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#53626 - 02/23/02 07:26 PM Re: Declining Standards, part 2
jmh Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/22/00
Posts: 1981
>the difference between schooling and education

I tend to think that the first is done to you, the second you do to yourself. As Mav says, if you are motivated at school you read around the subject, ask questions and sometimes disagree with the teachers, then you start to get an education. At times the process of getting through school (with the volume of work, tests, homework etc) seems to close doors to real learning meaning that it has to be deferred to a time when you can reflect.

Some years after leaving school I spoke to one teacher who I had so liked at school. She admitted that in my first year of science and her first year of teaching (she was really a physics teacher but had to teach all three at school) she was only a few pages ahead of us in the biology text book and was terrified that we might ask a difficult question. In some ways it was her own interest in learning about the subject for herself that inspired us. She didn't have to be an infallible pedagogue, just a fellow learner. It worked for me.


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#53627 - 02/27/02 12:12 PM Re: Declining Standards, part 2
Capital Kiwi Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/13/00
Posts: 3146
Loc: Northamptonshire, England
I remember my first tenative steps into the new math. After about the third I stepped into a whole number and failed to resurface for nearly 20 years. It's easy enough to look around for someone to blame, and by hokey (sorry, Selwyn, wherever you are) I had a prime candidate in my Form 2 (Year 8) teacher.

In those days, teachers were often expected to teach in subjects for which they were neither qualified nor suited. Poor Mr Bodkin (and no, he wasn't a prick!) had to teach new maths. Talking to him years later (you reminded me of this, Jo), it transpired that he'd failed math at school and had sworn and declared that he would never teach the subject. But needs must.

He was, quite literally, usually on the same page as us in the textbook. Every time he thought he'd be able to get ahead of us, he'd strike something he couldn't work out easily himself. By the time he'd managed to get it together, there we were, on the same page as him again. Well, at least, many other children in my class were. I never really got past the introductory chapter, the one with no numbers in it.

I got onto much better terms with math later in high school, although it was too late to pass the external exams, which I had to redo once I'd left school. The trick was, I found, not to think about the big picture at all, but to learn the little picture by rote. Still kinda works for me today.

But I don't blame Mr Bodkin, and I never did. It was pretty obvious to me, even then, that I was never going to be a mathematician. When I met him at a school reunion many years later, he was in his 80s, and still feeling very guilty about the bad job he thought he'd done at teaching maths in 1965 and 1966. I think that the group of us who were talking to him managed to alleviate some of that guilt. None of us had anything but respect for him. He was a good teacher - he just had one bad subject!

_________________________
The idiot also known as Capfka ...

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#53628 - 02/28/02 11:53 AM Re: Declining Standards -- bible translation
Keiva Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/04/01
Posts: 2605
As the New International Version of the bible is updated as Today's New International Version, changes include:
---"tunic" is changed to "shirt"
---"with child" is changed to "pregnant"
---"God does not judge by external appearance" becomes "God does not show favoritism"

Ah the [former] poetry of language!

How do our ladies feel about the change of
What is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? You made him a little lower than the angels; you crowned him with glory and honor.
to
What are mere mortals that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them? You made them a little lower than the angels; You crowned them with glory and honor.




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#53629 - 03/07/02 05:58 PM Re: Declining Standards, part 2
Rouspeteur Offline
member

Registered: 03/10/01
Posts: 163
At times the process of getting through school (with the volume of work, tests, homework etc) seems to close doors to real learning meaning that it has to be deferred to a time when you can reflect.

I heartily agree with you. When I was an undergrad I avoided arts courses because I did not want to have to give the professor's opinion back him (or her). In three years I took a two-semester course in music apreciation (A+) and one semester each of Greek history and Roman History in order to meet the degree requirements. I couldn't afford to have a low mark in an arts course affect my average and I just didn't have time. All of my electives ended up being in physics and math so I could get on with a career.

It was only after I finished all of my schooling that I was able to even start pursuing other interests. In 22 years, when I am ready to retire, I can then go and get the Classics degree I always wanted without having to worry that I woun't be able to get a job with it!




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#53630 - 03/07/02 06:17 PM Re: Declining Standards, part 2
Rouspeteur Offline
member

Registered: 03/10/01
Posts: 163
I too think that standards are declining, but I think it is a concern common to many cultures.

I remember a conversation I had with my fellow students when I was in Montréal. There were about eight of us, half French and half English. They were concerned about the declining standards of education in general and French in particular. They noted that universities were starting to have French proficiency exams for their francophone students. They were surprised to learn that a lot of English universities are doing the same thing for the same reason. The universities do not believe in the product they recieve from high schools any more.

We would prefer to put our children in a private school, but there isn't a French one where we live. Luckily though, there is a French Catholic Public school about 10 miles away that they will be able to go to. Because we are in a predominately English area, the school will function more like a private school because there is a lot of parental involvement. The nuns teach the children respect and expect them to work hard.




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#53631 - 03/08/02 06:56 PM Re: Declining Standards, part 2
jmh Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/22/00
Posts: 1981
>In 22 years, when I am ready to retire, I can then go and get the Classics degree I always wanted without having to worry that I woun't be able to get a job with it!

It is always possible to get a job with an arts degree. You must know the story of two friends walking down the street. One mentions that he met a friend who had gone away to study an arts course years ago. "What did you say to him?", said one friend. "Oh, just a Big Mac and a large fries," said the other.- Apologies for the old joke!



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#53632 - 03/08/02 07:20 PM .
Max Quordlepleen Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/12/00
Posts: 3409

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#53633 - 03/08/02 08:46 PM Re: Declining Standards, part 2
Angel Offline
addict

Registered: 12/28/01
Posts: 688
In a similiar vein, I guess that USns probably don't refer to a BA as a Bugger All.

No, I think that's Burger all here.


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#53634 - 03/17/02 02:36 PM Re: Declining Standards, part 2
Capital Kiwi Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/13/00
Posts: 3146
Loc: Northamptonshire, England
You're all full of it. Big Macs and large fries are served up by former Cobol programmers. Unless they're sweeping the floors, of course!

_________________________
The idiot also known as Capfka ...

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#53635 - 03/28/02 07:29 PM Re: Declining Standards, part 2
belligerentyouth Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/20/00
Posts: 1055
Loc: Berlin
> A sensitive mentor can help you light your own spark for subjects that might elude you otherwise.

Mmm.....
http://www.guardian.co.uk/Columnists/Column/0,5673,674732,00.html


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