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Rutabaga

An Unexpected Christmas by Cole Parker

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This is another dependably well-crafted story from Cole Parker and may even cause us to believe in Santa Claus.  

Presumably nothing will come of the threatened “F.”  Wacko teachers seem to be a continuing theme with Mr. Parker.   

I have to empathize with Cory’s boredom in history class.  What I can’t understand is why it has to be so boring.  I find history fascinating now, but generally hated it in school. 

R

 

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Perhaps teens dislike history because they live in the present moment, where the challenges and events that affect them personally appear to be so important that nothing that happened in the past to other people, all dead now, seems worth attending to.

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On 12/26/2019 at 12:37 PM, Rutabaga said:

I have to empathize with Cory’s boredom in history class.  What I can’t understand is why it has to be so boring.  I find history fascinating now, but generally hated it in school. 

R

I wasn't a big fan of my history classes when I was in high school. But I could see why we needed to study history. The problem was the focus was on memorization of things like dates and names of people and places that don't exist any longer. We had to learn the dates when the Peloponnesian War started and ended, and who the leaders of the Athenians and Spartans were etc. etc. instead of what was important. Like why was there a Peloponnesian War and what the objectives and results were for both sides and how it affected the people who lived on the Peloponnesian peninsula and who lives there now — things that are interesting and matter to people but apparently not to history books and high school history teachers.

The approach used in my history classes seemed to want to make historians out of us. That's why so many kids (like Cory, and me) think that history classes are boring.

Colin  :icon_geek:

 

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What with changes and reforms to the calendar, those dates are probably wrong anyway.

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And what's wrong with cuff links anyway?

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2 hours ago, Joe said:

And what's wrong with cuff links anyway?

Nothing… if you don't mind loosing one now and then.

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On 1/12/2020 at 4:35 AM, colinian said:

I wasn't a big fan of my history classes when I was in high school. But I could see why we needed to study history.

Colin  :icon_geek:

 

As we all know: Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it - George Santayana

I was fortunate to have a U.S. History teacher in high school who believed in learning through exploration. The only assigned text was a paperback version of Richard Hofstadter's The American Political Tradition, first published in 1948 but very much applicable today. We spent much of our time in the library writing essays on key topics that forced us to learn history, not as a series of events and dates, but as an interrelated series of causes and effects, explored from different viewpoints. It was one of my hardest courses, and one of my all time favorites.

Unfortunately, the only teacher for World History in our school had a reputation for destroying kids' self-esteem and I never did well under teachers like that, so I skipped the course, which wasn't required. I learned the subject matter on my own through extensive reading over many years. Unfortunately, there are gaps that persist to this day.

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I've never lost a cuff link and I used to wear them almost daily.

I quite agree with you on the subject of history.  There are far too few good ones out there.  I didn't get a great one until university.  My recurring history teacher in HS (small town) believed that the way to teach history was for her to read to us from the book; or for us to read the book ourselves, quietly in class.  I once asked her who Admiral Darlan was.  She looked at me blankly.

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