Monday, October 10, 2005

Baseball, anger toward Joe Buck and other things

I am currently watching the Yankees-Angels playoff game. I am not a fan of either team, but I love baseball. Although Joe Buck definitely thinks he's hot stuff, and it's irritating. I guess he can't help it, what with his name. Also, there's a guy on the Angels named Vladimir Guerrero. I said, Vladimir? Is he from St. Petersburg, Honduras? [I thought he was Cuban, thus explaining the name Vladimir as a leftover vestige of communist nostalgia. However, a more informed reader explained to me that Guerrero is Dominican. So now I have no explanation for the name Vladimir showing up. If someone else does, please contribute. Or else I might have to name my own child Trajan, or Juan Peron.]

[Ok I looked it up myself, and thus have to willingly bow down to the god of ignorance, who, by the way, fully supports constructivist learning. Apparently the Dominican Republic, like much of Latin America, flirted with communist ideology during the 1950s and 1960s. Don't worry, though, the U.S. invaded just in time to screw everything up even more. I guess Vladimir's parents were hoping things would turn back the other way when he was born, in 1976. Turns out they were kind of on the losing side of things. Except Vladimir, since the Angels won today. So I guess what goes around, comes around, right? Yes.]

These are just some thoughts to make your day brighter. As I've said, I'm here to serve.

Update:

Instantaneous Joe Buck quote: "The Angels are killing Mussina softly."
This guy needs to be taken down.

Update II:

The Yankees lost, and I'm sure many people are sad. I, however, am still angry with Joe Buck, and intend to do something about it. This might include going to his house, sitting next to his TV when he's watching something, and making annoying comments.

However, perhaps I should instead redirect my anger away from Joe Buck and toward important issues, such as education. Although anger regarding education is more exhausting than other types of anger, because anger regarding education exists every minute of every day, including today, when I was forced to do a pencil drawing of what I thought Hiroshima looked like after the United States dropped an atomic bomb on it during a "stations lesson" activity in my methods class. If this is not trivializing an important event and turning it into a pointless and aggravating activity, I do not know what is.

In the same stations lesson, we were also asked to write a short story about the burned military uniform of a Japanese soldier. We had to make up the person it belonged to, what happened to the person during the bombing, etc. I found it incredibly disturbing. Abraham Lincoln once said, "History is not history unless it is the truth." The point of studying history is not to create new history. The point is to learn about our own world, reality, the universe we do live in rather than the ones we create in our silly little heads. I found these activities somewhat of a betrayal, both to the people involved in the events and to the study of history as a discipline. You don't make up science, you don't make up math, and you don't make up history!

(By the way, I had to do an assignment where we looked up history quotes. I'm not one of those people who can quote legendary individuals off the top of his or her head. Although someday I hope to be, god willing. I like those people.)

I felt somewhat redeemed later when we took out some questions from the state history tests. We had to go through and answer some of the questions, and they were pretty tough! I was quite impressed. Our instructor asked us smugly, wouldn't we be able to answer these questions after that stations lesson? Everyone in the class said no, we hadn't learned enough. HA. EAT IT, CRAZY PEOPLE.

I hate the whole reasoning behind this smugness about "not lecturing" and "being creative" and "letting the students learn for themselves." It's like these people are saying, 'all of our teachers thought they were so great, but they didn't have all the answers. They tried to imprison us in their mental universe, but we wouldn't let them, cuz we're rebels! And now we're stickin' it to the man by saying that we don't know any more than the kids do because we all have good thoughts!'

I don't ever think I would say to a class, "I know everything, I have all the answers." [Actually, on a bad/cocky day, I might.] But I would say, "I don't have all the answers, but I do have quite a few more than you do, since I went to college for four years, and then graduate school, to learn all of this stuff, whereas you are 13 and don't know Greece from your ass. Fortunately, I feel generous enough to want to share some knowledge with you here today, and every day for the rest of the year." This is what makes traditional teaching generous, and new teaching stingy. In new teaching, we say we don't know the answers, even though we do, thereby keeping the answers for ourselves while trying to make the students "figure out" or "find" or "discover" things that would be more efficiently and effectively transmitted from us to them. That's why we have teachers in the first place. Granted, many teachers don't know the answers to things, including "Why are you such a bad teacher?" But I'm talking about a better world here, folks.

7 Comments:

At October 10, 2005 7:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Huh?
Vladimir Guerrero is Dominican.

 
At October 10, 2005 8:54 PM, Anonymous GuessImNotGoingToTheWorldSeriesAnymore said...

...and A-Rod was killing me brutally, yet slowly...kind of like in Stephen King's Misery, with each strike out another mallet blow to the knees...

Ugh.

 
At October 11, 2005 8:38 PM, Blogger "Ms. Cornelius" said...

1. Joe Buck is worshipped in St. Louis, because...

2. He is Jack Buck's son, and St. Louis is...

3. Incredibly inbred and xenophobic...

4. But if you think he's bad, try Al Hrabosky.

Shaddup and let me watch the game!

And, think-- now you're sticking it to the Man if you lecture, since it's now so passe. So carry on, my wayward teacher....

 
At October 12, 2005 7:27 AM, Anonymous Goldstein Gone Wild said...

Kids may not know Greece from their collective ass, as you say (paging Roz), but more disturbing is that many don't know Grease. Seriously, what will contribute more to college success - familiarity with Crete or Olivia Newton John?

 
At October 12, 2005 1:45 PM, Anonymous confused_parent said...

I linked to your blog from eduwonk and really enjoy it. Keep writing!

Stupid question from a parent who is tryng to understand education in America. I understand what Constructivism is- what are the alernative philosopies that are used in education? Ive heard cognitivism, behaviorism, and others- Im just trying to get my terminology straight and then work from there.
Thanks for your help

 
At October 22, 2005 8:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You sound like I was when I was in grad school in the 90's. I wish they had the internet then!

Unfortunately, kids who are average students and below cannot listen to a lecture anymore. I too believe it's the best way to teach, but after being the lone lecture supporter in my grad school 10 years ago, I've been forced to cross over to the hands-on school of teaching.

If I ask the kids to paint a model of a cell in a group, they will do it and learn something. If I stand up and give notes on the cell, I have to shush someone every five minutes. I have kids who cannot let anyone be the center of attention but themselves, and will do anything so the kids look at them and not you. And, no, verbal reprimands don't work, and you won't be backed up much by the admin. if you give detention or something. I do give lecture notes twice a week, and the other three days they do hands-on lab and art stuff, or maybe a worksheet or two. Those days go much better, believe me.

 
At November 09, 2005 11:00 AM, Blogger Karlos said...

Okay...so I'm a little late in the game, but I just had to chime in on Joe Buck.

I absolutely despise the guy as an announcer. The man has, at the most, very little to offer as a commentator of any game. I'm convinced the guy is in this business just to hear himself talk. Joe needs to shut the hell up every so often, and quit trying to "invent" cute one-liners that will inevitably never catch on.

Vin Scully is a great announcer in my opinion. He doesn't babble on about mindless crap, and knows that it's okay to let the game go on autopilot for a few minutes every so often. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that we’ve been watching sports without color commentary for much longer than we have been.

If you ever choose to go sit next to Mr. Buck while he watches a game, look me up and I'll join you. I’ll bring crunchy snacks we can chew on with our mouths open.

Joe Buck Sucks!!!! Someone start a web site!

Cj

 

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