Jasmine Becket-Griffith (jasminetoad) wrote,
Jasmine Becket-Griffith

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Public Schools... you get what you pay for...

Ah, memories. As high school and middle school were too traumatic, I'll reminisce about elementary school.

I attended public school here in Kansas City from Kindergarten - 12th grade. My parents taught me how to read, write, and rudimentary mathematics (up through exponents) before I ever went to kindergarten - and it's a good thing too. If I'd relied on the classroom syllabus I probably wouldn't have learned any of it!

It was first grade. We were learning about "greater thans" "less thans". My dad had long ago told me that > is the "greater than" symbol and that < is the "less than" symbol. He likened the symbol to an alligator's open mouth, used the analogy that the "alligator wants to eat the larger number of fish", which is of course true. BUT when I got to first grade, my teacher taught that < is the "greater than" symbol and that > was the "less than" symbol. She told us to think of the > and < symbols as being "little arrows that point to the bigger number"! Um, what? I tried to tell the teacher that she was wrong. I even helpfully explained about the little alligators. She wrote my name on the board for "talking back". Well, maybe I was just a little like Hermione (from Harry Potter) when I was younger, but dammit, I was right! When we took the first math test, I answered the questions correctly and they were marked wrong. I eventually swallowed my pride and purposely did the problems the WRONG way just so I could get good grades. It was then I realized how the world worked.....
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