Tag Archives: School

Cursory Rhymes

The_egg-man

Taking forward my earlier tirades/rants/memories of/from school, I am going to rant a little more. About pre-school to be precise.

Pre-school and primary school are usually considered to be the most important years of our education. This is where the building blocks are laid towards the formation of a lifetime of learning and character building. One would consider each and every word taught in these years to be thought out extremely carefully. Wouldn’t you?

Read the below sentence:

Rock-a-bye baby, on the tree top. When the wind blows, the cradle will rock; when the bough breaks, the cradle will fall and down will come baby, cradle and all.

How factual. How practical. How real. I mean, this will be the exact sequence of events if the wind blows. We should teach our babies right at the outset that they should never tie a cradle to a tree top. Brilliant!

Let us observe another sentence:

There was an old woman who lived in a shoe. She had so many children, she didn’t know what to do. She gave them some broth, without any bread, whipped them all soundly, and sent them to bed.

Another practical statement to make to kids. Family planning. Or else, you as mom will have to whip your kids to bed! Less said the better about this.

These are such incorrect things to teach babies. Stupid sentences made up just so that they rhyme! I have not even reached the real violent ones:

London bridge is falling down, Falling down, falling down, London bridge is falling down, My fair lady.

OR

Jack and Jill went up the hill, to fetch a pail of water; Jack fell down and broke his crown, And Jill came tumbling after.

OR

Three blind mice, three blind mice, see how they run, see how they run! They all ran after the farmer’s wife, who cut off their tails with a carving knife; did ever you see such a thing in your life, as three blind mice?

OR the ever popular

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall; all the king’s horses and all the kings men, couldn’t put Humpty together again.

I did mention in one of my earlier posts, that we are taught too many impractical stuff in school. I now stand corrected. I mean, if we really have to make our kids aware of the violent and hurtful world, what better way to do it other than making up cute rhymes and make them learn it when they are 3 year olds.

I leave you with the cutest of them all:

Georgie Porgie, puddin’ and pie, kissed the girls and made them cry. When the boys came out to play, Georgie Porgie ran away.

Now you know what to blame for all things that go wrong with humanity.

 

P.S. Do notice the cartoon at the top by my exclusive cartoonist. Do give feedback. 🙂

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What we should have actually been taught in School

Oatmeal always comes up with the most brilliant comics to explain the most complicated stuff in the funniest manner. They have now come up with this new series about what we should have been taught in School. Below are a few of them. Go read the rest here. Go!

EnglishMathSex_ed

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Compass Box

I find this term really, really fascinating. Compass Box. 

It is an absolutely childish term. I for one, cannot ever imagine a grown up using this term regularly. And I really love the way it rolls out of your mouth. I mean, not YOUR mouth. I guess you got what I mean. Apart from how it sounds, it is one of the few terms which directly transports you to only one undisputed place – School. Back in school when all of us used to look the same. Same uniform, same shoes for all. It was so difficult to stand out. My school did not allow the girls to wear any kind of jewelry as well. 

All that we had to show a difference were our bags, and, our Compass Box. Of course, back then, there were no exposure to famous football clubs, or IPL teams. There were your usual Superheroes and the popular (and now classic) Cartoon Characters. So bags in short had limited options. So, it all boiled down to the Compass Box. 

Girls had these neatly kept simple boxes, with appropriate number of pens and pencils with erasers and sharpeners. Boys however, were spoilt for choice. From the usual and the original Geometry Set Box (which actually held a compass), to plain plastic boxes, to the ones which were ‘branded’ pouches. However, the ones which never failed to impress were the ones which were robotic. I kid you not! These were EPIC in the truest sense of the word. They had buttons which made the box look like Swiss Army Knives shooting out erasers and sharpeners. It was almost pornographic with the amount of ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ it used to demand from its audience. It was like the only way one could actually get a toy to school and play with it. It was a rocket launcher, a battleship, a launchpad, an airport and anything a boy wanted it to be.

I know I have rattled on quite a bit about something as simple as a Compass Box, but come on! After all, it is about our Compass Box!

So, how was yours?
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Don’t know what…

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Today, I had to drive my mom around (this is the weirdest way to start a post). Anyway, I will not get into the details of what and how and just get to the point: it involved going to a school. A very quaint old school in Chembur. It was just one storey tall and looked as if it could do with some upgrades. 

This was where I realised a couple of things:

  1. I have not seen a school from the inside in a very long time
  2. I do not know what upgrades schools have currently got compared to ten years back

Due to the above reasons, I could not decide if the school was good or bad (considering it was a Sunday and it was closed for the usual business). 

However, I did see a few things that made me think. Outside every class window, there hung these ‘sayings’ which are supposed to build a strong human character. These were the same lines which we were taught in school. And I was happy that they are still trying to instill them. The world seems so different than what it was when I was in school. It seems just more, layered. Everything is layered. Maybe it always was like this.

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I am practical enough to realise that nothing much has changed in the way humans interacted then and the way we do now. The means have changed. But we are still the same fools. Just that new means of interaction have allowed us to do our foolery faster than ever before.

I am sure the people who taught me in school knew about all this. They knew what the world is like. Why did they still tell me these things? I feel cheated by all of them. But I guess if they would have gave us a reality check at 6, all of us would simply dread growing up. 

Idon’t know what exactly went through my mind when I read these lines. I was not sure if these words hold true. If these words do not hold true, why do we use them to lie to kids? How much longer will we keep trying in vain to create ideal men? It is not possible to do it this way. 

I don’t know what the solution is. Or maybe, I don’t know what the problem is.

 

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