We Are Losing Our History

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Annie, Jun 27, 2005.

  1. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    The only way for a country to have 'shared values' is to teach them. No, I am NOT speaking of religion, that should be taught also, at home and in Sunday School. Actually, parents also play a role in teaching their children history, more importantly "Civics" by voting, following and explaining laws, volunteering and explaining that is part of the American tradition, likewise staying informed.

    But the schools are failing to teach history in too many cases. I can't say exactly when, but the concept of teaching 'Social Studies' instead of history and geography was certainly part of the problem. Now mind you, "the social studies" are made up of: history, geography, sociology, political science, economics, anthropology, and psychology. I have degrees in 3 of those and endorsements in 2 more. They are all worthy areas of academia, but not in any depth until high school or college for the last 5. Nothing, least of all history, stands alone, applying psychology in the 'affective' discussion is going to happen in the lowest grades. So will economics, when speaking of pop culture, the depression, etc., which occurs in the middle school grades. Anthropology is going to be addressed in a cursory fashion also in middle school at the latest, when discussing World History/ancient cultures.

    What got me started on this? Oh yeah:

    http://www.opinionjournal.com/diary/?id=110006877
     
  2. ScreamingEagle
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    ScreamingEagle Gold Member

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    Agreed, this is a serious issue. If we lose our history, we lose America.

    How do we improve the teaching of American history and civics? Shouldn't there be textbooks that focus on this in detail? Why are textbooks being chosen that fail to teach our children our history? Or are they just not being taught?

    Do you think parents should have a say so in the choice of textbooks? It seems like the choices are being made by only teachers and some sort of committee. I'm sure that the teachers and the committee are made of mostly liberals. Why shouldn't a parent have some input too?

    Also, as it says in this article by the Education and Manpower Bureau, teachers don't have to really use a textbook. How do we know what the heck the teachers are teaching the children if they don't at least follow a textbook? I don't have a problem with supplemental materials, but if there is not some structure, anything could be substituted.
    http://cd.ed.gov.hk/cr_2001/eng/textbook/fqa_e.htm

    Evidently some people are becoming concerned about the issue of not using a text and are thinking some schools need more oversight and maybe some accountability.
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/05/25/AR2005052500050.html
     
  3. rtwngAvngr
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    rtwngAvngr Guest

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    The teacher's union must be destroyed.
     
  4. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    This isn't so much a teacher union problem, of which there are many, more of a National Council of the Social Studies and left wing teachers. It doesn't help that most lower grade teachers don't know history themselves and are thus "married to the texts."
     
  5. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    I know of no lower grade teachers that would 'leave' the text for long, they do not have enough subject matter knowledge on their own, to hit the standards. As the students progress to middle school and high school, the text often becomes more a reference point, as the teacher does have the specialties knowledge. I would be much more concerned about the 'teachers' than the texts. The texts by and large are lame, politically correct and often present revisionist history.

    As for text selection, in the public schools there are usually committees of subject matter teachers that review from choices provided by either the school board or department chair-then they state the consensus. The board has final say-as budget largely determines the choices.

    This coming year new social studies texts for my class are at $89 per student. I was lucky, I got to choose what we'll use-but I'm in parochial school. I stayed with Prentice Hall for American and switched to Prentice Hall for World History. They do the best-not a great job-of keeping down the revisionism, as well as providing good support materials.
     

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