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  1. #11
    Senior Member piroska's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why School English Matters

    Quote Originally Posted by KenESmith View Post
    Students are not encouraged to read classic literature, which is a great source in improving an individuals own written expression
    I have not really read "classic" literature. What a snob thing to promote. I did read War and Peace, and my god was it boring.

    Far better and more interesting is A Song of Ice and Fire, currently 6 books and 2 more to come. Re-read them many times.

    I was an A+ english student back in school. What I read mostly was Science Fiction. Not fantasy, not "spacies" like the abominable Star Wars.
    But classic??? Oh really.

    So long as you read, and enjoy what you read, who cares what genre or not it is.

    My GD struggled a bit at school. They do teach spelling, maths etc at school. But if you slip behind, they don't have the resources to spend extra time with those kids.

    My son sent her to Kumon for a bit.
    She picked it up and went through it like lightning.

    Now she is doing OK. No classical reading....I gave her comics. Scooby Do was a favourite, and Garfield.
    Garfield is quite hard for a 8/9 yr old kid...it has some big words.

    Now she reads all sorts, Harry Potter was one.
    Classic? I hate that term.

    What do you call Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein ? Science Fiction. Classic enough? Or is that consigned to the rubbish bin too, because it's SF?
    Ex-pctek

  2. #12
    Senior Member piroska's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why School English Matters

    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Druid View Post
    And now they want to eliminate the teaching of Latin which is one of the building blocks of English and of immense use in determining the meaning of unfamiliar terms. .
    What? I never learned Latin.
    What for?
    English? Which one....Old, Middle or Modern?
    Modern english is a mish mash of what was spoken before, latin, Greek, German which is what Old English was originally, French, Norse.
    Because of the invasions and subsequent colonisation.

    So?
    Never hindered me in my schooling or career later.

    This is just a hold over from stupid english rich schools who taught nothing especially useful, just latin, greek and so on.
    I could point to plenty of famous people who despite it, went on to better things, and denigrated the system they came from.
    Ex-pctek

  3. #13
    Senior Member Paul.Cov's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why School English Matters

    Ooh, yeah, and Shakespeare. What a useless and utterly boring load of BS that was at school.

    If you could go back in time and eliminate one person from history, would you choose to X out Hitler, or Shakespeare.

    Joking, I know it's a crass thing to say, but Hitlers crimes are long since over, whereas Shakespeare continues to curse school kids more than 400 years after his passing... wot a bastard.

  4. #14
    amateur expert dugimodo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why School English Matters

    I've always hated literary snobbery myself. Always seemed like people congratulating themselves for their own preferences to me.
    I got told off in High school english for doing a book review on a western I read by Louis L'amour. People should be encouraged to read the things they like not disparaged for it. Pure snobbery.
    He's also a very successful author. No real drama for me I only started reading westerns when I finished all the sci-fi in the school library, but still irritating.

    But then high school english annoyed me in many ways, while being one of my best subjects. You learn to parrot what's expected rather than speak your actual mind if you want good marks.

    As to the original post, unless the original sender went back and reread his own txt his confusion is understandable. We don't know if he has poor English skills or just made a typo and didn't realise.

    My Idea of a classic novel is Isaac Asimov or Robert Heinlein
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  5. #15
    Senior Member piroska's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why School English Matters

    There is reverse snobbery too. A teacher told my high school son he was a "mature reader" because he read a couple of fantasy books.
    They are all stories, people should ignore what book critics and the like say.
    Read what you enjoy....
    Ex-pctek

  6. #16
    Rocket Dog WalOne's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why School English Matters

    At HS, when asked to critique some obscure or not-so-obscure author's work, I relied heavily on The Oxford Companion to English Literature. Most times, you could find a precis of the work you had to comment on, read the beginning and end perhaps a random reading in the middle, then pad it (the precis) out. Worked like a charm and thus I was spared having to read Wuthering Heights, Tom Brown's Schooldays, etc etc. These days of course, you're spared even that legwork because the internet does it all for you.
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  7. #17
    VoidMaster
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    Default Re: Why School English Matters

    Don't forget "Inverse snobbery" which is where you try so hard to not be perceived as a snob, that it becomes a snobbery in its own right, this is a common phenomenon in NZ in a race to the bottom to be seen as a "good bloke" and not "up yourself".
    It's not the least charm of a theory that it is refutable. The hundred-times-refuted theory of "free will" owes its persistence to this charm alone; some one is always appearing who feels himself strong enough to refute it - Friedrich Nietzsche

  8. #18
    pcsourcepoint
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    Default Re: Why School English Matters

    At HS we were loaded with Poems and Shakespeare to recite and analyse. This included reading books from UK Shakespearean actor Paul Scofield. I can still recite four verses of The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner Poem. Kind of feel cool about that. Though I think it means little, but then... Strangely I do refer to its entire lengthy poem online occasionally trying to understand the dozen of verses. Kind of a analysis thing I like. I found solace in reading my own books at HS, such as Ian Fleming's short James Bond stories - long before they became major 1970's - 80's Bond movies. and Adventure stories from Willard Price.

    But how much English do high school students need, and what type? Now with tons of foreign students, teaching could be vastly different than decases ago.
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  9. #19
    Senior Member piroska's Avatar
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    Default Re: Why School English Matters

    Quote Originally Posted by kahawai chaser View Post
    But how much English do high school students need, and what type? Now with tons of foreign students, teaching could be vastly different than decases ago.
    I had an english teacher who played us movies. Including Sleeping Dogs which he was in.
    And Don't Look Now. I liked that one.

    However the point was the angle/angel.

    Kids need the basics, including spelling and grammar.
    Not Latin, greek or a focus on boring old books. Any book will do.
    Ex-pctek

  10. #20
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    Default Re: Why School English Matters

    Quote Originally Posted by piroska View Post
    I had an english teacher who played us movies. Including Sleeping Dogs which he was in.
    And Don't Look Now. I liked that one.

    However the point was the angle/angel.

    Kids need the basics, including spelling and grammar.
    Not Latin, greek or a focus on boring old books. Any book will do.
    Why learn a language like that?

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