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FR EXCLUSIVE: Class Syllabus of Bush-bashing Colorado Geography Teacher Jay Bennish
Cherry Creek Schools | 3-2-2006 | Jay Bennish

Posted on 03/02/2006 11:57:54 AM PST by doug from upland

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To: Restorer
find those with the "Question Authority" bumper stickers particularly annoying....

The thing is that their idea of "authority" and my idea of it are different things. They don't question the "authority" of the MSM; I do. They don't question the "authority" of Liberals in power; I do.

Very good point that authority is often legitimate and should be obeyed, too.

My list of most annoying bumper stickers, the ones that really just piss me off! --

Hate is not a family value.

and

Baby On Board

I always get an irresistable urge to stuff a tennis ball in the mouths of the drivers. Wankers.

I'll admit in my youth I had a bad bumper sticker that read: Save gas. Fart in a jar. *sigh*

101 posted on 03/02/2006 5:47:12 PM PST by Finny (God continue to Bless President G.W. Bush with wisdom, popularity, safety and success.)
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To: birbear

Wow! Sounds like a very cool teacher! Wish there were more like them!


102 posted on 03/02/2006 5:52:34 PM PST by Finny (God continue to Bless President G.W. Bush with wisdom, popularity, safety and success.)
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To: Finny

Some teachers are considered "cool" by their students, but their approach to instructing their pupils should not be governed by a desire to be popular with pimply-faced adolescents.

Teachers must guard zealously and impart enthusiastically the subject matter with which they have been entrusted and to which they have devoted their life's work.

They should never distort or depart from their subject matter just to facilitate some "fun" activity or to flog some personal viewpoint.

This "geography teacher" seemed to be doing both. He was souping up geography to stroke his own ego.

When I teach, I constantly remind myself, "It's not about me!"


103 posted on 03/02/2006 6:03:15 PM PST by Morose Musician
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To: Finny

The syllabus is academic spinach. If he could just make #3 happen: "Students understand how physical processes shape Earth's (note the cute capitalization of 'earth')surface patterns and systems," he would earn his money. But then he would have to call the course Physical Geography or Geomorphology. (FYI: For years introductory Physical Geography was the most difficult, but likely the best, undergraduate geography course taught at the University of California, Berkeley's renowned Geography Department.)


104 posted on 03/02/2006 6:06:34 PM PST by gaspar
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To: NZerFromHK

Thanks for posting a more intellectually honest syllabus for a geography class.

Those of you who are not in public education need to understand that one of the fundamental attacks on traditional teaching and learning is the assault on subject matter itself.

The idea that, within a given academic discipline, there is a universally recognized body of knowledge that must be mastered is the "authority" that is continually being "questioned."

Hence, geography need not include geography. It, instead, can be the launching point for the discussion of a hundred seeming unrelated (and often more interesting and less intellectually demanding) topics.

The comparison between a real geography syllabus and Mr. Bennish's syllabus reveals what is happening in all academic subjects in public schools.


105 posted on 03/02/2006 6:14:31 PM PST by Morose Musician
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To: Morose Musician

I think there are also cool teachers in the sense that he presents everything clearly and thoroughly and in an easy-to-understand manner. It must be noticed, though, that most adolescents may not "appreciate" such teachers!

I remember a few teachers in high school that I consider cool: one teacher always called back to basic foundational principles in 5th Form (equiv to US high school Sophomore) chemistry such as moles, empirical formulas, etc when we got stuck. He also extended the teaching materials and included something about acid-base concepts that were not examinable until 7th Form (senior) but which helped us immensely in understanding 5th Form materials (of course he didn't set any tests on these extension materials). Another teacher in maths taught all the common tricks in problems such as solving (2x - 1 = 2x + 3).

Of course, bad teachers are those that actually refuse to really teach anything, those who actually thought he had gone over a topic but in reality hadn't (I had one teacher like that when in high school - and it produced confusion in the class). I'm sure that most of the students in Mr Bennish's class would consider opinions like mine as from nerds.


106 posted on 03/02/2006 6:16:17 PM PST by NZerFromHK (Leftism is like honey mixed with arsenic: initially it tastes good, but that will end up killing you)
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To: Morose Musician

Thanks, and to be honest NCEA is already affacted by the postmodern theories of education that the modern Left is so fond of. My alma matar is so unhappy with the whole concept of standards-based education and "skills-based" learning that it single-handedly introduced Cambridge University's international exams to New Zealand's schools.

You can notice that the first syllabus is more hard-knowledge-and-skills-based, while the second one starts to look more Bennishized.


107 posted on 03/02/2006 6:22:50 PM PST by NZerFromHK (Leftism is like honey mixed with arsenic: initially it tastes good, but that will end up killing you)
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To: doug from upland

I love when we catch them doing stupid things like this. Makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.


108 posted on 03/02/2006 6:37:54 PM PST by mikemc282002 (Blood, toil, sweat, and tears.....Not Schumer, Clinton, Kerry and Kennedy.)
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To: NZerFromHK

I was also one of those nerds who considered "cool" those teachers who could teach their subject matter in such a way that I could both understand it and feel motivated to learn it.

I had several excellent, many mediocre, and a few flat-out bad teachers in my academic career.

To this day, I cherish the memories of those teachers who really inspired me to learn.


109 posted on 03/02/2006 6:46:18 PM PST by Morose Musician
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To: doug from upland

There are a couple of interesting bits at the Denver county court. Nothing big, though.


110 posted on 03/02/2006 6:46:47 PM PST by HighWheeler (The liberal dinosaurs bellow defiantly while sinking deeper into the swamp.......)
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To: beaversmom; doug from upland
some of his "students"


111 posted on 03/02/2006 6:58:49 PM PST by Deo volente
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To: Fred Nerks

Dude, she's not even cute.


112 posted on 03/02/2006 7:01:14 PM PST by Triggerhippie (Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.)
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To: doug from upland
The more times I hear the recorded diatribe by this ranting teacher the more disgusted I become. This guy is not much different than a sexual predator that preys on young kids. He gets off by spouting off his left wing, anti-American views to young students that can't defend themselves. Finally someone just happened to record what unfortunately is being presented to many of our kids in schools all over this nation. Maybe now they will be a little more aware that they are being exposed.
113 posted on 03/02/2006 7:08:39 PM PST by OregonTide
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To: mak5

"One of the students recorded it on his mp3 player and took the audio home to play for his father."

I'm sure audio recorders (even used to record class lectures for later studying) will be the next thing added to "zero tolerance" contraband.


114 posted on 03/02/2006 7:40:33 PM PST by bigdcaldavis ("HYAHHHHHHH!!!!!!!" - Howard Dean; Xandros - Linux Made Easy)
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To: beaversmom
I know most everyone at FR knows it, but this is what we are dealing with folks. Our public schools are toilets and they are churning out crap.

Twenty years ago when my brother decided to home school his two children I thought he was nuts. Now, 20 years later, I would do it also if my life were to be re-lived. Public schools absolute cesspools. I am pointing things my daughter needs to watch for in my grandkids public school - so far fairly good school system and excellent teachers in grades 1-6. Next year (grade 7) should get interesting.

115 posted on 03/02/2006 8:02:50 PM PST by p23185
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To: Andy from Beaverton

I spoke to the school district today and asked about the curriculum and his class. The woman volunteered to fax me the syllabus.


116 posted on 03/02/2006 8:21:27 PM PST by doug from upland (A dead body means a chance for Democrats to have another funeral-op)
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To: doug from upland
This very little man is very lucky that he did not hold my child captive, like he did with the students in his classroom, because I would spend my free time making sure this jerk was imprisoned for child abuse.

I am furious enough over the abusive treatment of these children (and the destruction of their safe learning environments), let alone if one of them were my very own.

117 posted on 03/02/2006 8:23:38 PM PST by Diva Betsy Ross (Embrace peace- Hug an American soldier- the real peace keepers.)
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To: doug from upland

Actually it is quite well written. I have no problem with any of it, unlike his recorded rant, which is at tension with the above.


118 posted on 03/02/2006 8:32:30 PM PST by Torie
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To: doug from upland

This from the Ward Churchill School of Government


119 posted on 03/02/2006 8:55:31 PM PST by TheEaglehasLanded
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To: Phsstpok
but I don't ever accept the "first cut" of any story.

That's reasonable.

120 posted on 03/02/2006 9:23:06 PM PST by beaversmom
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To: doug from upland
Check out that grading scale.

Back in my day, any percentage in the 70s was failing.

121 posted on 03/02/2006 9:24:38 PM PST by Extremely Extreme Extremist (We're Americans, we can do anything)
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To: doug from upland

Well listing this site (www.indymedia.org) as an extra credit source, really says it all... Portland's Moonbat Parfait Deluxe. A unique mix of Stalinists, Anarchists, Psychopaths.


122 posted on 03/02/2006 10:31:42 PM PST by Mr.Atos (http://mysandmen.blogspot.com)
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To: Billthedrill

I disagree, as a Conservative I pride my self on critical thought. Critical thought is why i am a conservative. People SHOULD question what they read. Be it God and Man at Yale or the Communist Manifesto. I like professors that question my views and make me think. I have had several Left wing professors and their classes were some of the most enlightening. If for no other reason because they made me come up with reasons for my views. The problem with this teacher is that he did NOT encourage critical thought instead he lectured. I did find one part interesting though, he admitted that the student had a good point about Israel. That is good.
I would also like to point out that teachers make say some nutty things to get their students to think. My 8th grade history teacher was nuts, or so i thought at the time. It turns out that he did not believe most of what he said but instead wanted the class to think and then argue with him. He did not hold grudges either. I questioned almost every thing he said, and hardly did any work. I got an A+ in his class even though i deserved a B. He said he gave me an A because i was valuable to the class and because the fact that i argued showed him i understood the material far better than what a test could. This is what a teacher should be. I think this teacher may have tried to do the same thing but went overboard. This does not mean i agree with him comparing The Commander in Chief to hitler.
I am rambling so i will shut up now LOL.
Semper FI


123 posted on 03/02/2006 10:45:56 PM PST by Icemanstever (Joining the Marines or Army)
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To: birbear

I LOVED teachers like that. They make it easy to learn, because it's fun.


124 posted on 03/02/2006 11:27:28 PM PST by Just Lori (To everything, there is a season.........Ecclesiastes, 3:1-8)
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To: doug from upland

His lawyer was on cable last night spouting that the name of the class was HUMAN Geography! What in the world is that?
The fact that this thing is teaching our children is definitive of what the 'RATs have done to destroy our country!
They're trying their best to make our children as anti-American as most of them are and I hate them for it.
My only gratitude now is that because of my delaying childbirth as a professional woman, I could have none, so I don't have to watch their being destroyed too!


125 posted on 03/03/2006 4:44:44 AM PST by SouthCarolinaKit
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To: Freee-dame; Travis McGee

Ping


126 posted on 03/03/2006 5:34:09 AM PST by maica (You are being lied to. By elements in the media determined that Iraq must fail. - Ralph Peters)
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To: Phsstpok

That doesn't mean I won't come to that conclusion, but I don't ever accept the "first cut" of any story.

@@@@

Something that we all MUST train ourselves to do.

We each, individually, know that when we read a news item with which we have first hand knowledge, we see errors in the reporter's work. Yet, when we read or see or hear a report on something that is unfamiliar, we believe that we are reading facts. Questioning everything these days has to become our default attitude.


127 posted on 03/03/2006 5:48:47 AM PST by maica (You are being lied to. By elements in the media determined that Iraq must fail. - Ralph Peters)
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To: NZerFromHK

Looks like a much more reasonable and interesting course.


128 posted on 03/03/2006 5:50:52 AM PST by maica (You are being lied to. By elements in the media determined that Iraq must fail. - Ralph Peters)
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To: Finny

In a Very Upscale neighborhood, that I drive through every day, there are lawn signs in UN blue: -- WAR IS NOT THE ANSWER

I dream of walking there someday and add a sticker that says

--- to what Question?
or

What is your Question?


129 posted on 03/03/2006 5:55:59 AM PST by maica (You are being lied to. By elements in the media determined that Iraq must fail. - Ralph Peters)
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To: Spanaway Lori

After listening to the whole tape....this was more of a "nation studies" class that you'd take in college. I was rather surprised that you'd be bringing this into a high school environment...and especially with 10th graders. In fact...if this is the norm...then why bother with the last two years of college? I'd say that they were already preping them and four years of university is totally unecessary.

The amusing thing to this...is that this guy actually writes that views of other students must be respected...in order to be in the class...and by his own chit-chat...he violates those rules. If I were the director of the school...I'll be scrathing my head...this guy has to go but how do I terminate him? I'm betting that this fool wants to stick it out and the union stands by the teacher...and the whole district probably will be asking if peer review of teachers might have to be brought in to termiante teachers in the future.

I'm sure if the dimwit was dropped off in Cuba for four weeks...he'd proabably be begging to leave at the conclusion of the "trip"...and keep his mouth shut over liberal stuff. Once you go to foreign country's and see how things run...you really come to appreciate what the US offers. I doubt if this fool has ever been anywhere much.


130 posted on 03/03/2006 5:56:08 AM PST by pepsionice
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To: doug from upland
The following materials are required for every class meeting

1. 3-ring binder/fold for handouts and readings
2. Lined paper for notes and class work
3. Pencil and pen
4. Textbook and/or readings

5. Copy of the Communist Manifesto
6. Copy of Mao's Little Red Book
7. Copy of the New York Times

(Note: Numbers 5, 6 and 7 are interchangeable.)

131 posted on 03/03/2006 5:59:26 AM PST by Tokra (I think I'll retire to Bedlam.)
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To: Icemanstever

My thoughts exactly. Teachers like this create the deepest conservatives and the shallowest liberals subject to enlightenment later on.


132 posted on 03/03/2006 8:04:16 AM PST by metalcor
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To: SteveMcKing

Yep, this teacher's syllabus is positively Orwellian. The following could result from educators like this guy:

"Nearly all children nowadays were horrible. What was worst of all was that by means of such organizations as the Spies they were systematically turned into ungovernable little savages, and yet this produced in them no tendency whatever to rebel against the discipline of the Party. On the contrary, they adored the Party and everything connected with it… All their ferocity was turned outwards, against the enemies of the State, against foreigners, traitors, saboteurs, thought-criminals. It was almost normal for people over thirty to be frightened of their own children."

George Orwell's 1984


133 posted on 03/03/2006 8:21:42 AM PST by Darnright (Remember that a lone amateur built the Ark. A large group of professionals built the Titanic.)
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To: Icemanstever
I don't have a problem with critical thinking - I have a severe problem with the academic "discipline" that calls itself Critical Thinking. In fact it is nothing of the sort. It's one arm of the entire Postmodern application of sociological principles to fields far outside the latter's normal limitations. Law, for example - I quote you from Cornell's curriculum in Critical Legal Studies:

Proponents of this theory believe that logic and structure attributed to the law grow out of the power relationships of the society. The law exists to support the interests of the party or class that forms it and is merely a collection of beliefs and prejudices that legitimize the injustices of society. The wealthy and the powerful use the law as an instrument for oppression...

Well, you get the picture. HERE is the source if you want to see just how far this body of thought has wormed its way into academia.

The upshot of this "Critical" approach to thought is that everything is political, no one is objective, and that all of Western intellectual life is anchored around the vested interests of privileged classes. Don't try to talk its proponents out of it - even objecting to it is a sign that you are protecting your own class interests. You can't win at this game because they've set the rules that way.

134 posted on 03/03/2006 9:45:18 AM PST by Billthedrill
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To: doug from upland
Great Website Links Chosen by the Freespeech TV staff from Freespeech.org
135 posted on 03/03/2006 10:06:02 AM PST by b4its2late (Terrorists will either succeed in changing our way of life, or we will change theirs. - Rummy)
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To: Spanaway Lori
I had the same teacher for 7th, 8th, and 9th grades. (Small private Christian school). The first day of class in 7th grade he picked on me to go to the map and point out the Isthmus of Panama. I had never heard of the word Isthmus, but I had a general idea of where Panama was.

He made me get a dictionary and look up the word. To this day I still remember the textbook definition of an isthmas.
136 posted on 03/03/2006 1:06:33 PM PST by birbear (You know what? This is crap. We're going to stop this.)
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To: birbear

NOW I have to look that up! LOL


137 posted on 03/03/2006 1:57:50 PM PST by Just Lori (To everything, there is a season.........Ecclesiastes, 3:1-8)
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To: Red Badger

What is wrong with Cato, Heritage, NewAmericanCentury, and brook?


138 posted on 03/03/2006 6:57:17 PM PST by Carlo Gambino
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To: doug from upland

Funny... I read the Colorado State Standards for Geography Education today, and NOWHERE in it does it state that Stalinism will be a part of the curriculum!!

I'm wondering...
Do different ideologies look at how to read a MAP SCALE, or how to get DRIVING DIRECTIONS from a map in different ways??

Do Maoists list tunnels differently on a map than say, Chomskiites??
Exactly where does Bush-Bashing help you figure out the height of a Mountain Range?

IS there a Liberal way to look at an Ocean?
Inquiring minds want to know...


139 posted on 03/03/2006 7:05:21 PM PST by tcrlaf
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To: doug from upland

http://www.ratemyteachers.com/schools/colorado/aurora/overland_high_school/jay__bennish

We want you back Mr. Bennish.. when you give us a speech in the end you always tell us your opinion and that it is good we have the freedom of speech so what is all of this..?

Sometimes teachers forget their mission is OPEN-UP kids minds NOT to close them down. The arrogance of some teachers is to use thehir teaching post as a bully pulpit for their pro

Jay is a true American patriot exposing and standing up to tyranny wherever it exists in the world. I notice that none of his detractors challange the truth of what he is teaching.

It's just sad when I, as a student, am more intelligent, logical, informed, and intellectually ingenuous than the teacher. His college must've had high standards to graduate him!


140 posted on 03/05/2006 8:40:56 PM PST by ratemy (http://disaffiliates.blogspot.com)
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To: ratemy

I think it is important to do one's history research here; may i suggest we read William Shirer's book Berlin Diaries and the stuff on 1937 - 1939 in berlin.

Then we would be capable to assess that teacher's transgression, especially if we compare Hitler's propaganda machine as detailed by Shirer to the news leading up to Iraq.

Likewise with reports and documents of Nazi warfare and that in Iraq. Simple source research = reading and thinking. makes for much better arguments than gang ho forward march type dialog.

Just a thought ...

Hallo truth!


141 posted on 03/07/2006 12:28:34 PM PST by hallo truth (Historic evidence ?)
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To: gakrak
Not that I am defending this guy or anything, but...
I don't understand why you feel the need to bash public education just because you have issues with this teacher. If I am wrong, and you have issues with public school in general and not just this guy, then perhaps you will take a stand for paying teachers more money. An increase in salary would be an incentive for the USA's better and brighter to seriously consider teaching as a profession. If you pay more, then standards could be raised so that people like this guy wouldn't be certified in the first place. My daddy, a lifelong Republican, always said, "You get what you pay for."
142 posted on 03/07/2006 2:49:36 PM PST by RileyR
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To: doug from upland

Again, I don't understand why people have to bash public education in general because of this. How many people in this forum have ever tried to do something to get better qualified teachers in our schools? Everyone wants to blame education system. Like all other "systems," it is not perfect by any means. But in all fairness, there are some really great teachers, who, by the way, get paid very little for the tremendous job they do each and every day. Let's not forget that!


143 posted on 03/07/2006 2:57:38 PM PST by RileyR
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To: doug from upland

bttt


144 posted on 03/07/2006 2:58:26 PM PST by nopardons
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To: p23185
How can you say that public schools are absolute cesspools, but then say that your grandkids' schools are fairly good? Let's stop generalizing about public schools. Some of them are bad, some are excellent, most are somewhere in between. Isn't No Child Left Behind supposed to fix the bad ones? The real point is not to criticize our over-crowded schools with over-worked and under-qualified teachers, stand up and do something to make our schools better! This is America! There is no reason in the world that ANY of our schools should be looked at in a negative light. If you want better teachers than this one, pay them more so that more qualified people will enter that profession!
145 posted on 03/07/2006 3:31:34 PM PST by RileyR
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To: doug from upland

If you don't like what you see, let these folks hear from you:

Dr. Monte Moses, Superintendent
Cherry Creek School District
4700 South Yosemite Street
Greenwood Village, CO 80111
Email: rmcintire@cherrycreekschools.org


Dear Dr. Moses:

Jay Bennish instructs us in the urgency of school vouchers.

Bennish is yet another example of the political indoctrination running rampant in public schools, schools that too often see their mission as overruling the basic values of parents. The First Amendment is not a license for teachers to indoctrinate, or otherwise opine beyond the scope of the curriculum and school policy.

If teachers can't teach about 'controversial' issues without neglecting to present all major views fairly, then such issues need to be excised from the curriculum. Period.

The pervasive politicization of public education by teachers like Bennish is just another reason why freedom of choice through measures such as school vouchers is essential to a free society.

Regards,
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Copy: Governor Owens (governorowens@state.co.us)
Jana Frieler, Principal, Overland High School, (jfrieler@cherrycreekschools.org )


146 posted on 03/07/2006 7:08:07 PM PST by iHillary (iHillary Blog)
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To: doug from upland

I plugged this thread on the FoxTalkRadio -- John Gibson Show early this evening. Brought up that the rant was just the tip of the iceburg with this guy and that there was probably an entire distortion of the subject and the code words were easily known to the school administrators.


147 posted on 03/07/2006 7:16:30 PM PST by KC Burke (Men of intemperate minds can never be free....)
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To: KC Burke

Thanks for the input.


148 posted on 03/07/2006 7:40:47 PM PST by doug from upland (A dead body means a chance for Democrats to have another funeral-op)
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To: CROSSHIGHWAYMAN
I have serious problems with those who think that they are attempting to teach HOW to learn when in all actuality they are teaching WHAT to learn. To right the wrongs of what a child learns at school is taking away their ability to choose for themselves. If one wanted to teach how to learn, they would simply show both sides of the argument. I am a registered republican voter and believe in Bush. I am also a high school student in Colorado. I have serious reasons to believe that those who have posted in this forum have not heard the entire speech given by Jay Bennish. The media has done an extremely good job of taking his words out of context, only using those that benefit a story. At the end, he makes it clear to all of his students that he does not necessarily believe in the words he speaks, that they are merely ideas meant to inspire his students to think outside the box. This is a sophomore Advanced Placement class. That means that the level of thinking is advanced and the curriculum is more critical than that of a regular class. As a student having participated in many of these classes throughout my high school career, i am intrigued by a challenge. Mr. Bennish is not teaching his left wing principles to his students, although I do not know which party he is associated with, and he will not admit whether or not he believes in what he says. I compliment Mr. Bennish for being a teacher who stuck to what an advanced placement class should be; a place to expand a students understanding. He poses radical ideas not just to teach them, but instead to fire up the students conversation and spark critical questioning that leads to a healthy education. Mr. Bennish is not teaching Bush-bashing or any such thing to his students. Sticking to what it says in his curriculum, he is posing ideas to make his students think critically and spatially. And as far as his curriculum goes, I personally believe that the geography of our world includes much more than capitals and maps. Especially in an AP class. It entails everything from the history of how our world came to look this way to the relationships that form between countries. This has much to do with current events and how they shape our world. As far as the student who sent this directly to Mr. Rosen, I question his morality. The radical ideas seem to be a reoccurring issue in Mr. Bennish's class. This proves his concern in expanding the intellects of his students and not teaching left wing ideas. If a student were offended by this, why not take this problem up with the teacher or at least the principal where things are normally handled at school? Why go directly to the press? First of all, he invaded Mr. Bennish's privacy by recording him. It is required by law for businesses to post signs when they have surveillance in progress. Would you not feel violated if you knew that someone was recording your every word without your knowing and then had the power to take it to the media and thus bash you with your words taken out of context? The student should have had the respect and human decency to consult his teacher of his problems first. So in my view, Mr. Bennish is not a Bush-bashing ranter who was pushing his radical beliefs on his students. We don't even know if these are his beliefs. Instead, he is a fresh, cutting edge teacher who abandons the "traditional" methods of teaching (which from the past 11 years of experience I can tell you do more harm than good) and dares to make his students actually think and question everything around them, which is much more teaching them HOW to think than WHAT to think.
149 posted on 03/07/2006 7:46:45 PM PST by hsstudent
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To: MJemison

"Tolerance" and "respect for other's opinions" has long been liberal code for leftist group-think. "Open-mindedness" is another term that means anything but.


150 posted on 03/07/2006 7:47:11 PM PST by Junior_G
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