Friday, 25 September 2009

LET IT BE (*small rant)

The Girl and I have one of two types of discussions:
a) Convoluted but entertaining or b) Controversial but necessary.
The majority of these are carried out sitting in the drive in the car after we’ve returned from somewhere and we don’t want to get out of our fuzzy little conversation zone – or else in bed at night when there’s a world to put to rights. Of course there’s still the ‘does my bum look big in this’ discussion (mainly me to her cos she’s a size gorgeous anyhow and her arse doesn’t even look big with a puffball hemline).
Yesterday she told me (in the car, in the drive – just back from school) that NOT ONLY has she got another series of Mock GCSE’s to prepare for in November in preparation for the Exams Proper next May (and November is also her Birthday month which has already led to some quite serious altercations) BUT there is also a pre-mock History test scheduled for Monday – this COMING Monday and they’ve been give exactly, what, four days notice to revise and prepare for this.
Which then obviously led onto the discussion of how crap History is and what the hell had possessed her to take History as one of her GCSE subjects and what the freaking freak have events leading up to and surrounding World War Two to do with relevance in terms of ‘Modern History’ – hasn’t the whole sorry episode been done (to death) and dusted for well over sixty years now? How bloody less Modern could you get? It’s becoming archaic. And not even in an interesting, what WW2 did for us type-thing.
I did exactly the same stuff she’s doing now, nearly 20 years ago (showing my age, but what the hey) and I didn’t like it any more than she does either. There’s the Treaty of Versailles, there’s the Maginot Line, the Three Powers, the Third Reich, yadda, yadda, yadda, can they not, for the love of god, find something more worthwhile to concentrate on and study for Modern History? Surely we’ve had a bit more Modern since 1939 to talk about? What about The Thatcher years? The Miners, the Falklands, the Twin Towers - and the whole punk revolution FFS!
As far as I’m concerned, Hitler was a freaking freakoid of freakishly freaky proportions who, simply because he was academically crap, socially inept and was shortsighted, decided to make everybody pay him some attention like a spoilt child by brainwashing them into believing everything he said even though most of it was utter boll*cks because people are basically sheep. Nuff said.
Why study something this miserable and soul-destroying and have to remember the dates they happened on too? Isn’t it enough that thousands upon thousands of innocent people got killed during these pointless years without perpetuating the “romance” of the whole thing by making students have to endlessly study it at school? And it hasn’t done much for German-British relations if towel-on-Spanish-sunbeds are anything to go by.
I empathise to the enth degree. I really do.
Why can’t kids today learn about HOW today works because of Great Events from the past? Instead of trawling through this bleak, depressing period in time for 24 months of their education – and it’s only 4 years of our own History – what about the other 2,005
The only thing studying WW2 did for me was to make me incredibly wary of Douglas Knox in the Lower Sixth because he had a very defined parting, wore NHS specs and demanded attention.
Wide berth.
BUT I wish I knew more about the way the Romans invented plumbing. About the creation of Railways, Flight, Leonardo da Vinci's insight, Animal Welfare, Emily Pankhurst, Miners Strikes, the Falklands War, The Monarchy, Third World Poverty, Penicillin, DNA, even fashion trends and monetary systems, the WWW, World leaders, Media, the list is so exhaustive it’s bewildering. Never have I ever found a consummate knowledge of WW2 to be in any way advantageous after leaving school. Never.
Even less so than having a simple grasp of Logarithms or being able to use a slide rule (now what the heck was all THAT about?)
Okay. *Rant over.

1 comment:

Deb said...

Oh, Debs, don't get me started on the State educational system! This is one of the reasons why I took my girls out of school.
And why not allow them to study subjects they really enjoy? How about ice-skating or kayaking for PE lessons, for example?
I don't think I've ever had the need to know how to make a metal clothes hook (Metal Work), nor (surprise, surprise) have I ever felt the need to work out the mass area of a parallelogram (Maths) and I've never, in my adult life, found it necessary to climb a rock in order to assess how much erosion has been caused by the wind (Geography). Funny that.