Please feel free to answer these questions on your blog or in the responses. If you leave me a link to your post, I will re-post it on my blog. You can also feel free to forward these questions to anybody who might be interested. Thank you to those who have already shared their thoughts.
Can you name all 50 American states (territories are extra credit)?
I should hope so. I can. Every child and adult in America should be able to name the states. Which takes me to what our children are learning in school. Not nearly enough!
When my kids were in school they had one week of instruction on writing in cursive. One week!
But, then who needs cursive? Isn’t everything going to be on the computer anyway?
Here’s the deal. My kids can’t write in cursive beyond signing their names. And they can’t read cursive so if I want to leave them a note it has to be printed, either by hand or on the computer.
As a side effect of this, schools don’t seem to bother much with handwriting as a whole. Reading my kid’s handwriting is like deciphering a cryptogram.
By the way, my kids learned little grammar or punctuation either. I spend years (and still do) reminding them about capital letters and periods.
What about history? Science? What are kids learning in our schools?
Are we teaching kids or just trying not to offend anybody?
I am not knocking teachers. Teachers are heroes and should be treated as such. And paid as such. Teaches hold the future of our country in their hands. I’d be afraid to teach in this day and age, afraid of being hit or stabbed or shot.
Think about teachers in, say, Laura Ingles Wilder’s time. One room school houses. They still multitasked. Teaching several classes and ages at once, making sure the wood stove was heating the room, the children had quills and ink, filling lamps. They were also not allowed to be married, drink, smoke or even be around people with those habits.
According to one source, the following is an example of the knowledge students in the 1800’s needed know in order to graduate 8th grade.
(Time, one hour)
1. Give the nine rules for the use of Capital Letters.
2. Name the parts of speech and define those that have no modifications.
3. Define: Verse, Stanza and Paragraph.
4. What are the principal parts of a verb? Give the Principal Parts of do, lie, lay, and run.
5. Define Case. Illustrate each case.
6. What is Punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of punctuation.
7-10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show there in that you understand the
practical use of the rules of grammar.
(Time, 1 1/2 hours)
1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.
2. A wagon box is 2 ft. deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?
3. If a load of wheat weighs 3,942 pounds, what is it worth at 50 cts. per bu., deducting 1050 lbs. for tare?
4. District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?
5. Find cost of 6,720 lbs. coal at $6.00 per ton.
6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 per cent.
7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft. long at $20 per in.?
8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 per cent.
9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance around which is 640 rods?
10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.
(Time, 45 minutes)
1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided.
2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus.
3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.
4. Show the territorial growth of the United States.
5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas (Or which ever state you might live in)
6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.
(Time, 1 1/2 hours)
1. What is meant by the following: Alphabet, Phonetic, Orthography, Etymology, Syllabication?
2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?
3. What are the following, and give examples of each: Trigraph, Subvocals, Diphthong, Cognate, Linguals?
4. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.
5. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: Bi, Dis, Mis, Pre, Semi, Post, Non, Inter, Mono, Super
6. Mark diacritically and divided into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: Card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.
7. Use the following correctly in sentences: Cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane, vein, raze, raise, rays. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.
Could you pass this test? I couldn’t and not only because I am math-deficient. Or because I am so many years away from graduating. Some of these things I don’t remember learning.
So how does our children’s education compare today?
Are our teachers so busy being counselors, police, social workers, Ann Landers and a multitude of other hats to even have time to teach?
So, teachers, what do you think about the state of education today? Am I too influenced by media scare-mongering or are these things problems today?
What are our children learning?
https://www.education.ne.gov/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/Education_in_the_1800s.pdf. Spelling erros are from the original pdf.