The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on January 5, 1986 · Page 21
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 21

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Salina, Kansas
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Sunday, January 5, 1986
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Page 21
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The Salina Journal Sunday, January 5,1986 Page 21 What's for lunch this week Here are the Salina public school district's lunch menus for the week of Jan. 6 to 10: Monday Chicken chunks, barbecue sauce, buttered mashed potatoes, broccoli with cheese, hot roll and butter, orange wedges, milk. Tuesday Taco and hot sauce, lettuce and tomato, corn, cinnamon twist, peach chunks, milk. Wednesday Managers choice. Thursday Orange juice, pizza, tossed salad with dressing, green beans, chocolate cake, milk. Friday Deli turkey on a bun, shredded lettuce, potato wedge, catsup, fruit cup, pudding pop, milk. Adults speak against children in weddings Elementary students study philosophy HONOLULU (AP) - To some, the study of philosophy conjures up images of long-drawn-out metaphysical discussions. But to a fifth-grader here it is "fun and easy as pie." Megan, a 10-year-old at Benjamin Parker Elementary School in nearby Kaneohe, is talking about "Philosophy for Children," a program that started on the mainland and is being introduced in Hawaii schools. The program teaches kids how to think, says University of Hawaii philosophy professor Roger Ames, project director. Ames, together with Drs. Thomas Jackson and Karen Lee of the UH philosophy department, developed Hawaii's program. "Kids are graduating and don't know how to think. They can give you back information they have memorized, but as soon as you ask them to think for themselves and give reasons for their answers they are lost," Ames says. Philosophy in this program is not the jargon-heavy discipline found in traditional philosophy classes. Students do not discuss Plato or Hegel's dialectic. However, through dialogue, they are using a dialectic approach to the discussion, Ames says. They are analyzing, refuting and questioning scientific, social and philosophical principles in the manner children understand. They are learning to think critically, Ames says. The idea is to get children to talk about things that interest them and they can relate to, says Evelyn Teramae, a teacher at Parker Elementary. For instance, while discussing something topical, like Halley's comet, students are also learning about logic in sentences, she says. Another aim is for children to apply the analytical skills acquired in class to their other studies and their personal lives, Teramae says. Children love to talk about concepts such as friendship, fairness, reality and truth, say teachers involved in the program. Class discussions are the most powerful tool for getting children to think, say developers of the program. Classes at Olomana School, a facility serving troubled youths, focus on social issues such as responsibility, sex roles, victims and the judicial system, says Lee, head of the Ol- omana project. The course, she says, enables students to openly talk about "taboo" subjects. The students are motivated, with some of the discussions approaching college level, she says. Honolulu District School Superintendent Claudio Suyat says the program is expensive and it is too early to tell whether it works. But others see the program expanding, believing that in an "information age" children need to go beyond the basics and develop a higher level of reasoning. Dear Readers: I was mistaken. I predicted the letter from the clergyman who was opposed to •flower girls and ring bearers at weddings would produce a flood of angry mail. The opposite happened. Take a look! From New Orleans: When I was 3 my aunt chose me to be her flower girl. I was a shy kid who had never left my mother's side. At the rehearsal I was uncooperative (terrified) and wouldn't follow instructions. Everyone said it was "normal" and I would be just fine at the wedding. Well, when the ceremony began I freaked out and refused to budge without my mommy. I began to wail in a voice that was drowning out the organ music so they decided mommy should walk with me—holding my hand. Mommy was 8.5 months pregnant. She was furious with me. This happened 20 years ago and I still remember it as the worst nightmare of my lif e. From Fort Worth: I say "amen" to the clergyman's statement that ring bearers and flower girls should be scrapped. As a professional photographer who has worked many weddings I can attest to the fact that little kids don't belong in the wedding party. They become impatient during group photo sessions and can be very disruptive. Children should be permitted to be children and not forced into roles that demand adult patience. From Atlanta: Count me among those who vote against flower girls and ring bearers. I have worked for a fine catering service for several years and seen too many beautiful dinners ruined by little tykes who are exhausted, under too much pressure and should be at home in bed. From Garden City, N.Y.: I didn't want a flower girl but my mother-in- law insisted her niece be in the wedding party. The child was not yet 3 and I just knew it would be a disaster. Sure enough, she wet her pants halfway down the aisle and ran screaming to her nanny, who was standing in the back of the church. It ruined my special day. That's all people talked about for two weeks. No City, Please: As a member of Ann Landers NEWS AMERICA By The Associated Press BOWLING GREEN, Ohio — Parents demand it, teachers rely on it and students learn it rewards sentences along the simple lines of "See Jane run." The English teacher's sidekick, the red pen that circles every spare comma, nixes extra nouns and changes "ain't" to "are not," is retarding children's ability to write, says education professor Robert L.Hillerich. The Bowling Green State University professor and author of several textbooks believes overzealous "red-penning" has created a generation of non-writers. In his latest book, "Teaching Children to Write, K-«," Hillerich tells teachers grammar has become an abused and over-used course of study, and the less elementary students are exposed to its formalities, the better they'll write. "I cannot find a research study that says if you mark the errors on children's papers they will do better," Hillerich said. "The findings are consistent that children who write and don't get corrections will write more, they enjoy writing more, and they express more creative ideas." Hillerich says writing notes on student papers and teaching grammar in day-to-day lessons are beneficial, but too much emphasis on writing mechanics kills young students' ambitions to write. One study that has influenced the teaching of English and which backs his views is an assessment of writing sponsored nationwide by the U.S. Department of Education, Hillerich said. The third assessment, in a representative sample of students nationwide, was completed in the early 1980s. In use of grammar, the tests found "above average" writing by third-graders had more errors in comma usage than the "average" papers, which in turn had more grammatical errors than the papers judged poorest based on criteria such as sentence structure, organization and word choice. In other words, the best writers had the poorest grammar. But by eighth grade, students had learned to simplify their writing in order to get a good grade. "At the eighth grade level, the above-average themes were mechanically perfect. The only problem is they were written in short, simple sentences with common, everyday words," Hillerich said. "The students learned if they used a common word instead of the more appropriate one, and used short, simple sentences, they got a better grade and their paper didn't come bafck looking like it had a hemorrhage from a red pencil." Hillerich concedes it is difficult for teachers to let their red pens dry up. Older teachers firmly believe in their use. Younger teachers are likely to teach the way they themselves were taught and concentrate on error-hunting. Also, teachers who apply his methods must be ready to explain their use to parents, who often believe a teacher isn't doing the job if errors are not marked, he said. Parents are right to believe in aiming for good grammar, but often don't realize that focusing on it in elementary school is largely futile. He believes too many teachers would correct a child who answers a question in the classroom using the word "ain't." The correction belittles the content of the child's answer and discourages the child from offering answers and risking chastisement in the future. "What we need to do is accept the language the child brings to school and encourage the use, then in middle school offer alternatives," said Hillerich. Awareness of language's social importance develops in the teen-age years and, like adults, students then model their language after that of people they admire. Everything WlLL BE SOLD to the BARE WALLS TIL Save 20%n 50% Our loss is your gain. Every single item must go. Hurry (or best selections. We are closing our doors (orever. SUNSt-:TPlv\ZA Young World ^^ Mon.-Sat. 9:30-5:30 Thurs. 'til 8 827-2132 Leaders the clergy I cheered when I read the letter from the minister in Rochester, Minn., who spoke out against children participating in the nuptials. I wanted to shout it to the world of brides-to-be and print it in my church bulletin. At a rehearsal recently the little ring bearer cried and refused to walk down the aisle. Several people pleaded with him but he kept repeating, "I don't want to." I tried to persuade the lad but failed. I then suggested to the child's parents that perhaps the youngster should be excused. They wouldn't hear of it. The next day he began to act up in front of the church, swinging at people who tried to calm him. Once inside, he continued to behave in an unruly fashion. He accidently knocked over one of the candles attached to the front pew. The glass covering shattered and the candle ignited the purse of one of the guests. The flame was quickly extinguished but I found it difficult to begin the ceremony amid shattered glass, a screaming child and angry spectators. Please, no names or city. I have to live with these people. Thanks for the ear, Ann. I've been holding this in for too long. Dear Ann Landers: A while back you printed an excellent definition of a well-bred person. I wish I had clipped it, as I do many of my favorite columns. Can you dig it up for me? —Lisa in Sacramento Dear Lisa: I remember it well. It goes like this: "Whoever makes the fewest people uncomfortable is the best bred in the group." (Write to Ann Landers in care of News America Syndicate, 1703 Kaiser Avenue, Irvine, Calif. 92714.) Teacher's red ink pen stifles creativity Brenda Christie and Morris Peterson recently were installed as worthy matron and worthy patron of the Harmony Chapter No. 2 Order of Eastern Star. Other officers include Alberta Paramore, associate matron; Melton Shelton, associate patron; Winona Hart, secretary; John Ford, treasurer; Frances Ziegler, conductress; Linnadelle Mudd, associate conductress; Roy I. Baker, chaplain; JoLynn Peterson, marshal; Drusilla Baker, organist; Kathryn Rooney, Adah; Elan Dye, Ruth; Ellen Andersen, Esther; Brenda Zurfluh, Martha; Ethel Shelton, Electa; Betty Randies, warder; and Hugh Rooney, sentinel. 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