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Gove unveils Tory plan for return to ‘traditional’ school lessons


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#1 Dom_Giles

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Posted 06 March 2010 - 03:31 PM

Last week I got extremely annoyed by Cameron's speech - this week it's Gove's turn. In todays Times paper http://www.timesonli...icle7052010.ece he has said the following:


Children will be instructed to learn poetry by heart and recite the kings and queens of England, in a return to a “traditionalist” education planned by the Conservatives. Ok I don't have a problem with students learing "some things" off by heart, but is this the beginning and end of how History should be taught?


The historians Simon Schama, Andrew Roberts and Simon Sebag Montefiore will be invited to write the history section. Why?


History should be taught “in order — it’s a narrative,” Mr Gove said. Lessons should celebrate rather than denigrate Britain’s role through the ages, including the Empire. “Guilt about Britain’s past is misplaced. No I'm getting really annoyed.



“I’m an unashamed traditionalist when it comes to the curriculum,” Mr Gove said. “Most parents would rather their children had a traditional education, with children sitting in rows, learning the kings and queens of England, the great works of literature, proper mental arithmetic, algebra by the age of 11, modern foreign languages. That’s the best training of the mind and that’s how children will be able to compete.”



No No No and No again. This will NOT equip our students for the future, its a HUGE step backwards. Surely he doesn't mean this. Sitting in rows, learning things off by heart and studying the GREAT British Empire. OMG

Edited by Dom_Giles, 06 March 2010 - 03:33 PM.

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#2 Ms Ali

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Posted 06 March 2010 - 04:06 PM

Last week I got extremely annoyed by Cameron's speech - this week it's Gove's turn. In todays Times paper http://www.timesonli...icle7052010.ece he has said the following:


Children will be instructed to learn poetry by heart and recite the kings and queens of England, in a return to a “traditionalist” education planned by the Conservatives. Ok I don't have a problem with students learing "some things" off by heart, but is this the beginning and end of how History should be taught?


The historians Simon Schama, Andrew Roberts and Simon Sebag Montefiore will be invited to write the history section. Why?


History should be taught “in order — it’s a narrative,” Mr Gove said. Lessons should celebrate rather than denigrate Britain’s role through the ages, including the Empire. “Guilt about Britain’s past is misplaced. No I'm getting really annoyed.



“I’m an unashamed traditionalist when it comes to the curriculum,” Mr Gove said. “Most parents would rather their children had a traditional education, with children sitting in rows, learning the kings and queens of England, the great works of literature, proper mental arithmetic, algebra by the age of 11, modern foreign languages. That’s the best training of the mind and that’s how children will be able to compete.”



No No No and No again. This will NOT equip our students for the future, its a HUGE step backwards. Surely he doesn't mean this. Sitting in rows, learning things off by heart and studying the GREAT British Empire. OMG

:curse:
Let them try and make us.

#3 Giles Falconer

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Posted 06 March 2010 - 04:10 PM

I wonder how many of us history teachers actually taught fully the earlier versions of the NC - as imposed on us over the last 20 years...

About as many as will listen to Mr Gove, I suspect! :D

#4 Tony Fox

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Posted 06 March 2010 - 04:22 PM

as the kids say OMG, this has to be a wind up, surely someone from the opposition has hacked into the Tory speech writers wordprocessor and changed everything.

These are HUGE steps in the wrong direction.

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#5 Dafydd Humphreys

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Posted 06 March 2010 - 04:22 PM


Last week I got extremely annoyed by Cameron's speech - this week it's Gove's turn. In todays Times paper http://www.timesonli...icle7052010.ece he has said the following:


Children will be instructed to learn poetry by heart and recite the kings and queens of England, in a return to a “traditionalist” education planned by the Conservatives. Ok I don't have a problem with students learing "some things" off by heart, but is this the beginning and end of how History should be taught?


The historians Simon Schama, Andrew Roberts and Simon Sebag Montefiore will be invited to write the history section. Why?


History should be taught “in order — it’s a narrative,” Mr Gove said. Lessons should celebrate rather than denigrate Britain’s role through the ages, including the Empire. “Guilt about Britain’s past is misplaced. No I'm getting really annoyed.



“I’m an unashamed traditionalist when it comes to the curriculum,” Mr Gove said. “Most parents would rather their children had a traditional education, with children sitting in rows, learning the kings and queens of England, the great works of literature, proper mental arithmetic, algebra by the age of 11, modern foreign languages. That’s the best training of the mind and that’s how children will be able to compete.”



No No No and No again. This will NOT equip our students for the future, its a HUGE step backwards. Surely he doesn't mean this. Sitting in rows, learning things off by heart and studying the GREAT British Empire. OMG

:curse:
Let them try and make us.

He's certainly good entertainment value. Where's gorbash?
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#6 Harry FW

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Posted 06 March 2010 - 05:38 PM

I was just going to log on and post this and see what everyone thought - I'm glad that you're all ahead of me and you "are thinking what we're thinking"...

Does that mean that we all intend to subvert the curriculum then?
Would Ofsted be enforcing this? Yesterday I taught a lesson I titled 'How should we represent and remember WWI?" - would that be off limits...?

OMD indeed.

#7 gav

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Posted 07 March 2010 - 07:12 PM

Are those history teachers who are wishing for a Tory victory in the election still here? (Its gone rather quiet.)

If they are making public this kind of nonsense, just imagine what they are not telling us!

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Edited by gav, 07 March 2010 - 07:13 PM.


#8 JohnDClare

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Posted 07 March 2010 - 07:19 PM

Well!
I'm going to give this idea an 'A'.
Followed by 'R'
Then 'G'
Then 'HH!!'

ARGHH!! :curse:

#9 Giles Falconer

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 08:01 AM

Are those history teachers who are wishing for a Tory victory in the election still here? (Its gone rather quiet.)

If they are making public this kind of nonsense, just imagine what they are not telling us!


I could not, in any sense, support Mr Gove's version of education. But at the same time I cannot endorse with my vote the current Government, for many reasons, mostly outside education. I suspect I am not the only person with this problem!

#10 Ed Podesta

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 09:16 AM

Well!
I'm going to give this idea an 'A'.
Followed by 'R'
Then 'G'
Then 'HH!!'

ARGHH!! :curse:


It's long been the case ( and I hope you can back me up here John), that teachers (and history teachers in particular) have become expert in complying with the letter if not the spirit of restrictions like the ones proposed.

I bet there were many fantastic teachers working within the restrictions of the first version of the NC for History who were nonetheless teaching exciting, innovative and active history lessons a world away from the kind of tosh spouted by Mr Gove.

Even if we (and I mean the country here, not just us history teachers) suffer another long bout of conservatism then teachers will still use their professional judgement and expertise to teach good lessons, and if necessary to subvert the instructions they're sent from on high.

I think it's really interesting that the tories have lurched to the right in the last weeks - and that their rhetoric of economic freedom (especially for the richest) and self reliance is returning at the same time their social conservatism (they're the party of clause 28, of 'supporting marriage' of 'back to basics' of 'my little list') is rearing its ugly head.

Edited by Ed Podesta, 08 March 2010 - 09:17 AM.

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#11 JohnDClare

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 09:23 AM

I cannot endorse with my vote the current Government, for many reasons, mostly outside education. I suspect I am not the only person with this problem!

You'll all find out then what happens under a Tory government, won't you.

#12 Giles Falconer

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 11:37 AM


I cannot endorse with my vote the current Government, for many reasons, mostly outside education. I suspect I am not the only person with this problem!

You'll all find out then what happens under a Tory government, won't you.



Sadly I remember the 1980s all too well... But I also feel that the hopes many had in 1997 have been betrayed by the Blair/Brown governments since.

#13 JohnDClare

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 02:06 PM

Sadly I remember the 1980s all too well... But I also feel that the hopes many had in 1997 have been betrayed by the Blair/Brown governments since.

So it's out of the frying pan...?

#14 Jim Belben

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 05:43 PM

One common factor in the many posts about this topic in the Times online and indeed in much political posturing on the History curriculum is a general reluctance to base views on evidence - to go and find out for themselves what is going on in school history rather than recycling prejudices. This has been pointed out by Griffin and Smowton on the Times Online forum. And in the past even some of the great academics who in their day job would consider it a badge of shame to have uttered a historical judgement without absolute confidence they could back it up then let themselves down when it comes to pronouncements on school history. The need for evidence is a powerful control. Does anyone who was involved in the process of reacting and refining the first National Curriculum remember how long the prejudices survived once the group looked closely at what was actually happening in schools and how they changed their view. One of history's most powerful contributions to all round learning is respect for evidence and I think the current political debate - any political debate - needs a hefty dose of it.

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#15 dwiliamsmts

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 05:53 PM

I second your comments Giles. Anyone who can sit and say Labour have done a good job in the past term cannot be being realistic. This will be taught as a disasterous period of our History. A leader no one elected, residing over the worst economic crisis for years that will harm future generations, answering questions about an illegal war, the increasing cost of tution fees means higer education will be and remain as it always has been elitist, running the most corrupt and deceitful group of people in Parliaments MPs. Before people jump on the band wagon and say the Tories would do or have done it or it was not Labours fault. You cannot blame the institution when you are the institution. After 13 years of New Labour what is wrong with Britain falls on their shoulders and theirs alone.
I voted Labour in 2001 and 2005 but they have lost it now. For me it is time to let the frying pan know it is not doing a good job and must improve. There is one way for that.

Edited by dwiliamsmts, 08 March 2010 - 05:56 PM.





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