Sunday, January 15, 2006

The Silver Chair in the Classroom

"It's all a lie," the beautiful lady said as she strummed her mandolin for Rilian, the children and Puddleglum. "There never were any important books." "There never were any important books," repeated the children, breathing in the magic perfume from the fire. "Your teachers told you lies," she murmured. "Your teachers told you lies." "A book may be important to me, but there's no reason it's important to you. Go and read your graphic novels," she hummed. At that moment Puddleglum stuck his webbed foot into the fire and all the others woke up suddenly. "Shakespeare! Dickens! Dead white guys!" they screamed in defiance, as the lady turned into an evil snake and hissed at them. The battle was an ugly one."
--with apologies to C.S. Lewis (The Silver Chair)

If you don't think this sort of battle goes on in our schools (I'm including Canadian schools in that "our"), please read this post at Tim Fredrick's ELA Teaching Blog. I found this through the 4th Literature Carnival.

To me it only emphasizes the huge gap between the education I want to provide for my children, and that "offered" (and only offered--and gingerly--one wouldn't want to impose one's standards) to the students in today's high school classes.


Headmistress, zookeeper said...

Well. That was depressing.

Let's think.... why would a child with no experience want to respect the collective judgment of centuries of collective wisdom of well read minds?

Anonymous said...

Come on. Don't you think you've mis-characterized his argument to suit your own purposes? Maybe just a little bit?
I'm genuinely curious -- not trying to be a pain or anything.

Headmistress, zookeeper said...

In what way?

Mama Squirrel said...

Bud, were you asking me, the Headmistress, or both?

Headmistress, zookeeper said...

Apparently that was only rhetorical genuine curiosity.=)

The Fourth Homeschooling Carnival is up, and this post is in it.=) I hope you don't mind.