Subject: Re: It jist ain't far!
Date: 10 Jan 1997 00:00:00 GMT
From: "Myrkury" <MyRK@VOICENET.com>
Organization: voicenet bad advertises itself if i leave this field blank
References:1 , 2 , 3
NENSLO <email@example.com> wrote in article
> In alt.slack Myrkury <MyRK@VOICENET.com> wrote:
> : head right up on down to the skool bored meetin an get telling them
> : how Uncle Sam back on up in Washin'ton will get up and send y'all
> : hire up a whole new passel of Bubbonics teachers to learn tha pups
> : speakin'. Them skool bored folk can git them cuntry cuzzins of theirs
> : some gummint work
> You know whats funny though is I heard a statement from somebody
> official at the school that whole "ebonics" flap came out of and they
> all they ever said about it was they wanted to train TEACHERS to
> that the dialect spoken by black americans was not a symptom of
> but a functioning alternative communication system,
But the problem was they created the program to be a part of English As a
Second Language in order to take advantage of government programs aimed at
kids who SPEAK FOREIGN LANGUAGES. So the Oakland school board, whatever
its intentions were, was asking for trouble (check the
headlines/editorials in the Spanish Language press on the matter ESOL is a
program they fought for, and BTW a good one.)
Also, I really don't believe that this "training" and "sensitization" will
involve anything other than hireing the brain dead relatives of some
political hack and sending the teachers to a couple of all expenses paid
seminars at the Nigahffrey Hilton in Palm Springs. Any competent teacher
should be able to deal with dialect and accent. ALSO IT SHOULD BE
STIGMATIZED BECAUSE IT IS A DEGENERATE DIALECT THAT CAUSES THE USER TO
LIVE AY THE BOTTOM OF A HIERARCHICAL SOCIETY! No, I am not a NAZI and I am
not implying that speakers are some how degenerate. Many impoverished
(economically AND culturally) groups speak debilitating and degenerate
dialects. But the following are well documented language phenomena:
1. Most languages spoken by complex societies have perfect and imperfect
forms of the past present and future tenses, some have even more.
2. Most have 20,000 (give or take 10,000) words that constitute an
educated speaker's vocabulary.
3. When colloquial forms of the language emerge, they are typefied by
minimization. Tenses dissappear, obscure vocabulary is replaced by clumsy
descriptive phrases, even the phonology collapses.
4. The greater the marginalization of any group the more pronounced the
degree of the change described in 3.
5. These "degenerate" dialects limit their speakers ability to comprehend
and consider abstractions. Ghetto school children perform as well as any
other group on math tests that are based on concrete examples like: Johnny
has 5 oranges and gives some to sue, Now johnny has 2 oranges..how many
did he give to sue. When the question is phrased 5-x=2, children with
"conventional" english do much better. If you don't have the words it is
hard to form the ideas.
> and that this
> knowledge should be used by the TEACHERS to assist in teaching these
> children the forms of conventional English.
But to do this all the teachers need to do is to be COMPETENT.
> In short, the idea was that
> the children's use of the communication system common in their home and
> community should not be punished, but used as a tool for positive
It should be discouraged, and teachers will need to understand it only as
necessary to communicate with students that they should be using proper
english. But it is still OK if everybody is all nice nice and hugs. Low
expectations are racist.
> The whole thing about teaching "Black English" as a language was
> IN ITS ENTIRETY by the "news" industry and its witless lackies, the
> American Public.
There was alot of confusion yes, but some of the criticism came from well
informed individuals who saw in Oakland's actions:
Basically calling their own kids dumb
Lowering Expectations for both Students and Teachers.
> It was interesting to see the annual Language Scare give
> some attention to somebody OTHER than STUPID HONKIES who want to force
> everyone to be like them. As I recall, we had to import our Language
> Scare from Canada last year.
"language scare" by this do you mean the "french/spanish are going to
overwhelm us thing" or the (usually francophonic) "Our language eeet iz
being contamiiinated" ?
****I believe it is valid to be concerned that the ability of people to
communicate their ideas, desires, and dreams is allowed to go undevelloped
in the name of "cultural diversity"*******
Anyway, I have designed and tought for 3 years a summer/fall course to
get students from "underprivileged" backgrounds (atheletes.) I am a total
hard ass, I assign 4 or 5 HUNDRED pages of reading a week, make them write
constantly and criticize mercilessly. I EXPECT ALL MY STUDENTS TO BE ABLE
TO READ HIGHLY SOPHISTICATED LITERATURE AND WRITE INTELLIGENT ESSAYS.
This makes it necessary for me to be available to them 24/7 and I have
taken many calls from students at 3:30 am, but any other level of
expectation is harmfull to the students. The kids who go through my class
and several others tought in much the same way by some other masochists
have a HIGHER THAN OVERALL GPA in all four years and graduate in four
years at a higher rate than the general student population.
mean teacher dude