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Are You Being Dumbed Down? Want to Take an 8th Grade Test From 1895 To Find Out?

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posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 06:47 AM
I will post a test that includes Grammar, Math, History, Orthography (specifies correct way of using specific writing systems to write the language), and Geography. Give yourself approximately one hour to complete each portion of the test. When you have finished, just submit your answers here. In fairness, I will take the test also. I have not looked at the answers, because I truly want to know just how dumbed down we have become since 1895. (yes, there is a page for answers).

After I display the test, I would like some feedback from you guys on how you would like to do this. Do you want a pre-arranged time for the testing to end for this thread? Do you want your answers by U2U? Please respond with some ideas.
Please do not let the test overwhelm you too badly, it is all in good fun and in interest of how things have changed in the past century +, Okay?

[edit on 3-4-2008 by sizzle]

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 06:49 AM

Originally posted by sizzle

Okay. is that all you were waiting for? Now post!

p.s. U2U would be nice, but if interested, I will help you setup an HTML page to calculate scores automatically.

[edit on 3-4-2008 by scientist]

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 06:57 AM
Here is the Grammar portion. There is a request for a 150 word written composition, but I think we can forego that one or shorten it.

8th Grade Final Exam: Salina, Kansas - 1895

Grammar (Time, one hour)

1. Give nine rules for the use of Capital Letters.

2. Name the Parts of Speech and define those that have no modifications.

3. Define Verse, Stanza and Paragraph.

4. What are the Principal Parts of a verb? Give Principal Parts of do, lie, lay and run.

5. Define Case, Illustrate each Case.

6. What is Punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of Punctuation.

7-10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar.

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 07:00 AM
Here is the math portion: Not sure how we will accomplish #10. Just be inventive.

1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.

2. A wagon box is 2 ft. deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?

3. If a load of wheat weighs 3942 lbs., what is it worth at 50 cts. per bu, deducting 1050 lbs. for tare?

4. District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?

5. Find cost of 6720 lbs. coal at $6.00 per ton.

6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.

7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft. long at $.20 per inch?

8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.

9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance around which is 640 rods?

10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.

[edit on 3-4-2008 by sizzle]

[edit on 3-4-2008 by sizzle]

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 07:07 AM
Here is the History section:

1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided.

2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus.

3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.

4. Show the territorial growth of the United States.

5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas.

6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.

7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton, Bell, Lincoln, Penn, and Howe?

8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607, 1620, 1800, 1849, and 1865?

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 07:11 AM
You guys better hurry! Scientist is almost through. Next we have Orthography. I won't define that again as I think that when you see the questions, it is self-explanatory:

1. What is meant by the following: Alphabet, phonetic orthography, etymology, syllabication?

2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?

3. What are the following, and give examples of each: Trigraph, subvocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals?

4. Give four substitutes for caret 'u'.

5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e'. Name two exceptions under each rule.

6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.

7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: Bi, dis, mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, super.

8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: Card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.

9. Use the following correctly in sentences, Cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane, vain, vein, raze, raise, rays.

10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 07:21 AM
Just been informed that the thread has been moved to Education and Media. I had hoped to attract a wider audience than those only interested in education. I thought it might be fun and then we could get to the conspiracy behind why it is being done. But... Oh well. Next we have Geography:

1. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?

2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas?

3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?

4. Describe the mountains of N.A.

5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver, Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon, St. Helena, Juan Fermandez, Aspinwall and Orinoco.

6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.

7. Name all the republics of Europe and give capital of each.

8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?

9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.

10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give inclination of the earth.

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 07:32 AM

Originally posted by scientist

Originally posted by sizzle

Okay. is that all you were waiting for? Now post!

p.s. U2U would be nice, but if interested, I will help you setup an HTML page to calculate scores automatically.

[edit on 3-4-2008 by scientist]

Thank you for your interest and kind offer of help. Since the new location of the thread, I am not sure we will get enough activity to mandate a HTML page. Being relatively new here, I could be wrong, but in the four months I've been here, I never knew ATS had an education forum. Didn't know there were any active conspiracies related to education, other than the term, 'Dumbing-down the masses.'

[edit ] I'll check back in later today. Sayanora.

[edit on 3-4-2008 by sizzle]

[edit on 3-4-2008 by sizzle]

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 08:23 AM
That's pretty neat to see what they thought was important. What was so important about 1800 and 1849? I bet there is some lost history waiting to be remembered.

According to a random search infoplease take on history

Napoleon conquers Italy, firmly establishes himself as First Consul in France. In the U.S., federal government moves to Washington, D.C. Robert Owen's social reforms in England. William Herschel discovers infrared rays. Alessandro Volta produces electricity.

California gold rush begins.

They also include this:

Theodor Herzl launches Zionist movement.

I thought that was a myth.

[edit on 3-4-2008 by stikkinikki]

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 08:39 AM
reply to post by stikkinikki

My Guess :

1800 - either first prez in white house OR first congress in DC
1865 - either Lincoln killed OR Civil War ends

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 08:41 AM
I think she is asking members to do the test and she will reveal the answers later.

I don't think she is looking for a debate of what the answers are.

Just do the test.....

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 09:22 AM
This is really interesting..

Really.. I have failed already but its cool none the less.

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 09:47 AM
reply to post by sizzle

I understand your point, and wholly agreee we are being dumbed down. However this question doesn't quite pertain, as do several others, due to the time period differences:

2. A wagon box is 2 ft. deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?

Bushel of wheat? We would of course NOT be familiar with exactly what a bushel of wheat dimensions are (we of course can look it up online
) something rural 1895 farmers would know off the top of there heads.

Also, many of the things that were important to education 'back then' are no longer held to such high standards or regards, or perhaps not even being taught any longer.

For instance, english grammar rules used to be strict and verbatim, now held to much looser standards, other things are more important like science, technology, learning to be creative, etc.

Also, ever notice how neat and elegant cursive script was in the past? Most of the people on average had about the same sort of flowy looking (beautiful) cursive style of writing. Now of course its kinda personalized, add to that the computer and text and type and well...its all changed.

[edit on 3-4-2008 by battlestargalactica]

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 10:09 AM
I like your thought behind this test, but how many people will really try?
I'll bet most just look the answers up on google.

I looked through the questions and have to admit, I don't know the answers to most of them, however I don't feel that makes me dumber than when I was an 8th grader.

To me it's either that I didn't learn some of that to start with or I just don't care enough to try to figure it out.

[edit on 3-4-2008 by elevatedone]

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 10:13 AM
I personally don't think the test is relevant. As others have pointed out, a lot of this is stuff that was more important back then than it is now. When you show me where a guy in the late 1800s made a global electronic network or built a stealth bomber, then we'll talk about us being "dumbed down". But I think no one can be prevented from debating the relevance of this test, nothing in the T&C's to stop us from doing that, to my knowledge.

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 10:22 AM
Sizzle, great thread. Makes me proud to say I'm coming up on 50. I received an excellent public school education at a time when public schools still focused on education instead of politics and feel-good PC BS.

Many thanks to all my teachers of yore. You did a terrific job.


posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 10:24 AM
reply to post by Sleuth

Politics? When did schools talk about politics? The schools I went to avoided it like the plague, it being such a hot-button issue.

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 10:37 AM

Originally posted by thought
But I think no one can be prevented from debating the relevance of this test, nothing in the T&C's to stop us from doing that, to my knowledge.

But the topic of discussion is Not "the relevance of this test", the topic of discussion is:

Are You Being Dumbed Down? Want to Take an 8th Grade Test From 1895 To Find Out?

Are You Being Dumbed Down? yea or ney
Want to Take an 8th Grade Test From 1895 To Find Out? yea or ney

Otherwise, and if one were so inclined, perhaps it would be best to find or start a thread specifically to discuss the relevance of testing, or to determine the possible extent of dumbing down and whether it actually exists within our educational system.

For now this discussion and it's intended focus would be:
Are You Being Dumbed Down? Want to Take an 8th Grade Test From 1895 To Find Out?

Please keep the responses focused on-topic.

Thank you.

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 10:40 AM
reply to post by thought

My ex-SIL is a public school teacher. They brought politics into the classroom at least two decades ago. Instead of building solid foundations in math and language they're allowing them to use modern tools like computers and calculators to speed up the process. This leaves more time to use the teacher's desk as a pulpit to espouse political and environmental views. All this does is undermine the goal of any educational institution, particularly K-12.

The classroom is not the place for politics. It is where young minds are trained to think and problem-solve in an objective manner. Subjectivity should come later in the process when the child is ready to think for himself. No one should be standing there feeding him their own personal opinions. He should be allowed to freely form his own views.

I could go on and on, but I'm not interested in flamewars.

Teachers should teach and allow the young minds they're teaching to evolve on their own. It's that intellectual diversity that we're missing in today's youth.

When I look at the youngsters I see everywhere today they remind me of canoes, precariously balanced and rudderless. When you spoon-feed for years, that's what you're going to get, a person who can't handle adversity or make wise decisions on his own.

Need evidence? In the US, all you have to do is people watch at a mall or some other area where there are large groups of people on the move. It's heartbreaking to realize where our country is heading.

posted on Apr, 3 2008 @ 10:40 AM
they teach stealth bomber building in schools these days? thats insane!

i really liked this thread! very interesting to read those questions. I agree that some of it is irrelevant, such as the bushels of wheat and what not, but in regards to grammar i think it's fascinating to see just how we've thrown language down the toilet. personally i'd love it if we still held the language and grammar in high regard. i like that we personalize it now, but there are some people who know how to say ten or twelve of the same sentences, and and thats the end of it. they don't know anything about words. i think that's sad. yes i realize that i used terrible grammar throughout this entire post.

anyways, thanks fr posting this, it was really enjoyable!

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