A study of five midwesterners and their educational needs and experiences in the language arts

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1975
Authors
Geisler, Lawrence
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English
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English
Abstract

Throughout six years as a supervisor in an English curriculum in Grades 7–12, where I have observed thirty teachers each year advancing communication skills in classrooms, a thought—or question—has recurred like an ache somewhere in the body. The question, never answered and rarely treated, has been, "Of what benefit will this study be to these children in life, particularly in adult life?" Attendance at six consecutive conventions of the National Council of Teachers of English has not produced much in the way of alleviation of the discomfort. Neither have four convention experiences as a program participant: programs which have dealt with writing essays (twice), duties of a department chairperson, and a session for supervisors and coordinators. In fact, the subject of adult needs has never been treated in those experiences. Much has been said of "relevance" in recent years, so much in fact that the word brings knowing smiles to the faces of teachers. "Relevance" always has seemed to mean materials of high-motivation, very much related or similar to the teen-ager's life and interests, with little substance to thrust the teen-ager out of his or her provincial world into something broader and closer to what is defined as education.

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