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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Adolf Whatshisname.


Some bugger with silly facial hair

Prior to being formally taught the details of World War II in class, I would hope that you knew a fragment or two of the details (except of course if you're educated at the Ahmadinejad School of Selective History, in which case that whole "Holocaust" thing didn't really happen) and that you'd at least know some of the countries involved, perhaps a leader or two, who won, etc...

It appears that this current bunch of freshman have not only never given any thought to this information prior to class, but continue to be as absorbent as cellophane diapers. After some weeks of discussing WWII, doing papers, worksheets, watching videos, etc. This question was asked:

Who was Germany's fascist leader during World War II?

In two different classes, the student asked this question did not know the answer. One student was even prompted with "he was the leader of the Nazi party." Nothin'. Not a sausage. Nada. B'doon saut. As tempted as I want to put a finger to my top lip and raise my right arm in salute, I didn't. I sat there and wept silently. I had just come from their math class in which they had collectively managed to forget everything they had ever been taught about the distributive property, so I was disheartened to say the least. It seems we had filled their heads with all that we could and reached capacity for now. If we could get them to forget a few vital functions, we could maybe make space for more knowledge, but then without the knowledge and memory of why breathing is important, the effort may be fruitless.

Sadly, the same thing happened last year too.

I wasn't the best student in school, by any means, but I could tell you who the short-arse with the ridiculous Charlie Chaplin 'tache was, and so could all of my classmates.

I could spend some time hypothesizing as to why they fail to retain some of the more obvious scraps of information, bringing into discussion cultural priorities, background knowledge, home environment, the almost infinitesimally small probability of reading for pleasure and independent knowledge acquisition, virtually nonexistent study habits, and the sense of entitlement without appreciation of what those before us have sacrificed in order that we may live the lives we do... But I just can't be bothered.

One of these days, I'm going to be carted out of the damn building screaming "HITLER! HITLER! IT'S FUCKING ADOLF HITLER!" and sent off to sensitivity training and/or the loony bin.

9 comments:

No_Angel said...

chunk norris didn't approve of your last posting, but chuck norris believes that they are walking on his path for chuck norris doesn't read books... he just stares at them and the information starts flowing into his head.

Welcome to the American "educational" system but am sure u've already been welcomed well a long time ago :P

العبيط said...

Now... i want talk much about education... coz i am not into it... BUT Adolf Hitler WAS...

I consider that man, a phenomenon... a genius, regardless of his thoughts about races...

but he had something, made germany a powerful nation in less than 10 years...

regarding education, and leading people. that man has something, and it is not wrong or forbidden to take his strategies and apply it on our situation,

as Sir Churchill said
One may dislike Hitler's system and yet admire his patriotic achievement. If our country were defeated, I hope we should find a champion as indomitable to restore our courage and lead us back to our place among the nations.

* Winston Churchill

as for the holocaust thing, did Europe had 6 million jews alive at that period of time... not including the evaders and the one who didn't captured (later they all traveled to Palestine)...

i really doubt that

by the way... how should i give u my email ???

TeacherLady said...

No_Angel, Haha! I love those. Hey, the system could be worse... I've written a huge paper on how I'd like to see it evolve, but I'm guessing no one will care to read it.

Al Abeet (not sure how to write your nick in English), on this topic, our opinions will differ and will probably never come to consensus. I would rather my blog didn't become a war zone on the topic, so we should probably move on.

I don't wish to disrespect any of my readers, but should I cause any offense, I would rather the person approach me calmly as you have done, even if our beliefs are polar, or else that person also has the option to avoid my blog.

Can it be possible for people to not descend into raging arguments if it will lead to no where? Live and let live? Or am I too naive?

All I hope for is that my readers value ALL human life and maybe learn something from TeacherLady along the way.

My e-mail address is teacherladyblog@hotmail.com

Hani Obaid said...

lol, how frustrating. Maybe a ww2 movie would help. An exaggerated German accent. Maybe it's better if they know Ghandhi than Hitler :)

humble simpleton said...

Indeed Mr. Al Abeet, that achievement of Hitler is impressive, but he did not make Germany a powerful nation in less than 10 years. Germany always was a powerful nation, only exhausted after WW1. He could unite and inspire the people, yes, but Adenauer did pretty much the same after the war, and no speech of Hitler's was as powerful as "We shall fight them on the beaches".

As for the Jews, no need to doubt, when you are one mouse-click away from the answer. Try and google "jewish population in europe", voila.
Jewish town in Prague remained intact after the war, which is strange if you know that everywhere else Germans torn down anything Jewish before you could say "Buddha statues". That is because Hitler planned it to become a "Museum of an extinct race." If Prague Jewish town doesn't interest you, you can go and see the ovens in Auschwitz-Birkenau.

"As soon as the remains of the bodies fall from the grate to the space below, it is necessary to move it near the ash-door using the rake. There it may stay up to 20 minutes before complete decay. Then rake it to the ash-pan and put aside to cool down. In the meantime fill in new bodies."
-Excerpt from the oven operation manual.

I will fulfill Teacherlady's wish now, therefore I end.

TeacherLady said...

Humble, that was a well worded response. Thank you so much.

Bongi said...

i'm just a visitor here but thank you humble not-so-simpleton. your response was educated, for some at least, educating.

humble simpleton said...

Anytime

TeacherLady said...

I'm a very lucky blogger indeed to have Humble along for the ride.