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Old 07-26-2012, 11:57 AM
 
72 posts, read 224,742 times
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Not many people retain this information because it's completely irrelevant to their daily lives and is not something they need to know for 99% of jobs. Why would you bother remembering these facts if you are never required to recall them? Use it or lose it, and most people don't need to use this information. History teachers, people who want to get on Jeopardy, people who want to annoy others with random knowledge. That's pretty much it.
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Old 07-26-2012, 12:07 PM
 
3,670 posts, read 7,161,895 times
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i would agree with those who argue that most of this info is just not that important, but you have got to be pretty dull to hear this stuff over and over again and still not be able to retain it. scary. they should do a similar survey with college students

Last edited by brocco; 07-26-2012 at 12:40 PM..
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Old 07-26-2012, 12:17 PM
 
Location: The analog world
17,077 posts, read 13,359,835 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 313Weather View Post
These are the results of a telephone survey back in 2009. The percentages show how many students provided the correct answer. This is scary...

75 Percent of Oklahoma Students Can't Name the First President - News9.com - Oklahoma City, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports |
Interesting. Both my middle schooler and high schooler answered these questions easily. My elementary schooler was able to answer a few of them.
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Old 07-26-2012, 02:23 PM
 
2,603 posts, read 5,019,704 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brocco View Post
i would agree with those who argue that most of this info is just not that important, but you have got to be pretty dull to hear this stuff over and over again and still not be able to retain it. scary. they should do a similar survey with college students
I think knowing that we elect senators every 6 years and knowing the difference between the House and the Senate is pretty crucial stuff in a democracy. Unless we just want to keep raising generations who vote less and less. You can be sure the private schoolers and Ivy Leaguers are taking lots of history and government courses. It's really a recipe for an increasingly divided society.

I think one of the major reasons history and civics have been pushed out of the curriculum is that they are so highly politicized. History is incredibly political (look at recent debates over what to include in history books in Texas and Tennessee). If you strip all of the potentially controversial stuff from the history curriculum, you are left with a really boring and dry subject. History is taught completely differently in college than in high school - night and day really. Real historians don't just ask what happened, but WHY it happened; and that is where the real interest and value in history comes from.

Last edited by coped; 07-26-2012 at 03:15 PM..
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Old 07-26-2012, 04:34 PM
 
2,309 posts, read 3,848,623 times
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Having taught high school social studies now 8 years I've always questioned just what does a kid NEED to know. That's always the great debate if you will. I suppose it begins with determining why someone needs to be educated? is it to be a more well rounded person or is it to get a good paying job? If you choose the former then yes rote memo and reciting facts and pouring over text is a necessity. If it's the latter then I'm not sure a kid needs to memorize the Presidents in order.

My dad (41 year veteran in American Education) always poses this question to me. "Does a kid in inner city Detroit really need to know what the federalist papers were?" Now he never said it to convince me one way or the other. He just always brought it up as a means to help me understand that some kids do and some don't.

I'll be honest. If my car mechanic thought Happy Gilmore and Billy Madison were some of our earliest Presidents I'd be ok with that so long as he could fixed my car adequately. Knowing the Preamble verbatim is NOT a necessity for professional and personal happiness. Would it be nice to have all 330 million of us knowing all of these mundane facts about our nation's history and workings of government? most definitely. But is it a necessity? Not really.
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Old 07-26-2012, 05:42 PM
 
2,603 posts, read 5,019,704 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenvillebuckeye View Post
My dad (41 year veteran in American Education) always poses this question to me. "Does a kid in inner city Detroit really need to know what the federalist papers were?" Now he never said it to convince me one way or the other. He just always brought it up as a means to help me understand that some kids do and some don't.
But isn't that institutionalizing the class system through the educational system? We teach poor kids to work at McDonald's, lower middle class kids get trade school, middle class kids get accounting, and save all that government stuff for the wealthy?

I think a rigorous, well-rounded education is the way to go, with the option of more vocational training beginning at 14 years old. But I think we should be careful about typecasting kids because of where they come from.

We invested a lot of money in really good school systems in our big cities back in the day. Immigrant's kids in New York could get a quality education for free at one of the city schools, and many of them went on to become some of our best minds. [/quote]


Quote:
Originally Posted by greenvillebuckeye View Post
I'll be honest. If my car mechanic thought Happy Gilmore and Billy Madison were some of our earliest Presidents I'd be ok with that so long as he could fixed my car adequately. Knowing the Preamble verbatim is NOT a necessity for professional and personal happiness. Would it be nice to have all 330 million of us knowing all of these mundane facts about our nation's history and workings of government? most definitely. But is it a necessity? Not really.
Problem is, that guy gets to vote. If we focused only on what we need for jobs, we become easily controllable.
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Old 07-26-2012, 08:28 PM
 
Location: Beautiful Niagara Falls ON.
10,016 posts, read 12,574,700 times
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I have never yet met one single American who could tell me all the states that are on the Great Lakes or to name all the states on the Mississippi river.
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Old 07-26-2012, 09:02 PM
 
Location: Middle America
37,409 posts, read 53,553,761 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lily2204 View Post
Not many people retain this information because it's completely irrelevant to their daily lives and is not something they need to know for 99% of jobs. Why would you bother remembering these facts if you are never required to recall them? Use it or lose it, and most people don't need to use this information. History teachers, people who want to get on Jeopardy, people who want to annoy others with random knowledge. That's pretty much it.

Are people really annoyed by others' knowledge? How sad for them.
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Old 07-26-2012, 09:35 PM
 
2,603 posts, read 5,019,704 times
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Originally Posted by lucknow View Post
I have never yet met one single American who could tell me all the states that are on the Great Lakes or to name all the states on the Mississippi river.
Great Lakes - NY, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota

As far as the Mississippi River -- Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Louisiana and, of course, Mississippi
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Old 07-26-2012, 09:37 PM
 
Location: Middle America
37,409 posts, read 53,553,761 times
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I know my geography, too. However, the person who posted earlier will assume that all such knowledge has been googled.
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