US what do they teach you about WW2

Discussion in 'History' started by Asguard, Jul 6, 2013.

  1. The Marquis Only want the best for Nigel Valued Senior Member

    The subject itself has to be considered with regard to timeframes, which most school curriculums do not have an excess of.

    There are far too many considerations for the subject to be considered worthy of more complete study within the context of a school curriculum.

    I did say earlier that if one wishes to study any subject in its entirety, one needs to do so outside of a school curriculum.
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  3. quinnsong Valued Senior Member

    I disagree, if students did reports on different countries and their involvement and why then the time frame would not be a problem.
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  5. The Marquis Only want the best for Nigel Valued Senior Member

    Um hm.
    You've got 365 days in a year, more or less. About 2/3 of those will be spent at school. Most high school curriculums will only study a particular history subject for a single semester, at an hour a day (generous, most schools it'll be a half hour). You're claiming to be able to present a balanced, objective view of the entire war, in that kind of time frame, without concentrating on your own countries involvement more than any others.
    You'd barely manage to get past how it started, the major theatres and battles, and jokes about how many gears French tanks have.

    Not everyone is as interested as you. Your average schoolkid isn't going to give a rat's arse about the conference at Yalta, or who Winston Churchill might have been (unless they came from England).
    They might, though, give you a moments attention if you teach them whose butt your country kicked instead, and how - and give an overview of the other major players while you're at it.
    Like I said earlier, anyone who is interested will look it all up for themselves later. Teachers need to be able to give a framework of reference without boring the hell out of their charges - and the only way you're going to do that is to teach to points of interest, even if it is only mild interest.

    You've got three games of football on TV on a Saturday. One of them is the game your team is playing. You only have time to watch one game.
    9/10 people are going to watch their own games and check the results of the others on the Sunday sports roundup on TV.
    That's just how it is.

    When I was in high school, World War 2 wasn't even a subject in itself. Going from memory, we covered Australian history, Russian history (much more pertinent back in the 80's than it is now), and the unification of Germany, up to and including the de-unification following WW2 (I'm a little more vague on the school's reasoning behind that particular topic choice). Each topic covered a little about the involvement of these countries in both world wars, but not in any great detail - more as a side note when describing the effect of the wars on the countries involved. Thinking about it further, I'm not sure why you'd make world war two a topic in itself these days at all - unless as a precursor to a more in-depth study of Asia and the Middle East (particularly the latter). There are historical subjects of far greater relevance to the modern world.

    As to your idea - I'd prefer not to come out of high school only knowing what a bunch of school kids managed to dredge up on a Sunday, from Wikipedia most likely, on a topic few of them were particularly interested in, because they had to present a report on Monday for discussion.
    You'd end up knowing all about the involvement of India because the pimply war nerd drew that country, and almost nothing about Russia because the kid who got Russia was the high school football captain who couldn't even place Europe on a map, let alone Russia.

    I mean seriously, is your thought that because an subject is rather complicated when viewed in its entirety, the teacher should get the kids to teach each other?
    No thanks. Listening to teachers wasn't always the most entertaining thing in the 'verse, but it beat hell out of having to sit through a presentation by the aforementioned football captain.
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