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Home :: Archive :: 2002 :: May ::
Re: Results of the Experiment
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.1393  Wednesday, 23 May 2002

[1]     From:   Sam Small <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 10 Apr 2002 02:39:43 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 13.1353 Re: Results of the Experiment

[2]     From:   Howard Toshack <
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        Date:   Thursday, 23 May 2002 07:04:43 +0700
        Subj:   Results of the Experiment Again


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Sam Small <
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Date:           Wednesday, 10 Apr 2002 02:39:43 +0100
Subject: 13.1353 Re: Results of the Experiment
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.1353 Re: Results of the Experiment

My statement regarding the teaching of Shakespeare to children was a
general one - and I still hold it to be true.  Larry Weiss, Brian
Willis, Kristine Batey and Marcia Eppich-Harris all took my remark to be
a personal affront.  None was intended.  That you had such wonderful
parents and teachers was a gift.  That you were so literarily precocious
was, I am sure, noticed by your friends.  If we think of the teaching of
Shakespeare as a problem then teachers will always be frustrated -
except with children of the most gifted homes.  I'm not suggesting a ban
on the Bard, but to selectively expose children and teenagers to the
language as plays, films or occasional readings.  If it is part of an
irrefutable syllabus I would guess that most of the children would
resent it.  Some of the population, and me included, would love the
stuff from the start.  But we touch on a widely held tenet in education
lore that states that the ideal is that all children score top marks in
all subjects.  I simply don't agree.  It is not necessary that all
children love Shakespeare.  That they do not is not the fault of
teachers but probably human biology.

I also have to take exception to Professor David Lindley who finds my
position depressing.  He attests that curricula should be based on worth
and not the instant gratification of 14 year olds.  But worth must be
defined for all to see.  He suggests the worthy 4 times table which, I
am sure, could be easily justified to a teenage class or younger.  They
too would give you their own sincere reasons for learning it.  However,
with 400 year old poetry-drama centring on middle-aged dilemmas, I would
think you would have a harder time.  Would the pursuit of happiness be
badly obstructed by a poor grasp of Two Gentlemen of Verona?  I think
not.

SAM SMALL
http://www.passioninpieces.co.uk

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Howard Toshack <
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 >
Date:           Thursday, 23 May 2002 07:04:43 +0700
Subject:        Results of the Experiment Again

[Editor

 

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