Monday, March 1, 2010

Thanks Heaps Education Queensland...

I was reminded this morning of all the things I was taught in school that were not entirely accurate. I always used to say there were three main things. In fact there were more.

Add to this the fact that I was not taught enough English grammar to be able to learn another language (and in fact none of the schools I was at ever taught another language anyway), and that we were not made to rote learn our times tables (thankfully Mum was pretty keen on that activity), I begin to wonder what I was doing for those 12 years at school?

Wrong Fact #1:
Taipans only live on the very tip of Cape York Peninsula.

Yes, the most deadly snake in Australia, the bite-first-and-ask-questions-later type of attack snake isn't a threat to you unless you live on the hardly-populated-at-all tip of the Cape.

Then I moved to Cloncurry.

This is the best advertisement for sending all the new graduate teachers into western or northern Queensland where they may learn stuff not relevant to SE Queensland. And maybe we will warn them about the taipans in advance. Neh... much more fun if we don't!

Wrong Fact #2:
We don't have earthquakes in Australia.

Okay, so we don't suffer as much as New Zealand or San Francisco, but hello...the whole Great Dividing Range is a result of plates shifting. There was even an earthquake in Newcastle when I was in high school.

Wrong Fact #3:
The Ancient Greeks believed "everything in moderation".

Then I did ancient history at uni.

Pardon me for laughing immoderately, and allow me time to collect myself for a minute...

The truth is that some Greeks of the upper classes talked about "everything in moderation" - usually as they drank themselves into a stupor at a symposium.

Fact that I'd forgotten about:
Menstruation lasts for 4-7 days precisely 28 days apart.

I don't think I need say more?

And finally the fact that they didn't manage to teach me because I already knew that they were wrong:
Draftsmen don't design roads.

At the time my Dad was a Design Draftsman at the Department of Main Roads. In fact he was in charge of the Design Office. I'm not certain what he was doing with his time, since he obviously couldn't design a road, but I'd like to thank the Queensland Government for paying him for nearly 40 years to do nothing!

Certainly engineers check things; engineers may design bridges; they may do some design themselves from time to time. But the majority of the design and checking was done by drafties.

But the chance that my teacher would take my word for it?

... Approximately None!

6 comments:

Givinya De Elba said...

Wow. Whatever schools WERE you at?

Well, I can't remember much of what we were taught at school, but I'm hoping that it taught me how to learn.

I shall now bamboozle everyone with my amazing knowledge. Reading your post made me worry that my general knowledge was going to be assessed at the end. I shall now provide my answers.

I knew taipans were everywhere because once I heard that fact I decided never to forget it, I remember when the Newcastle earthquake happened, I tend to learn everything I know about Ancient Greeks from you, and personal experience shows that the words "menstruation" and "precisely" don't belong together.

Draftsmen however, I know very little about which is silly because I SHOULD know, in that our buddy Swift Jim is one. He has often talked about designing roundabouts and The Brisbane Busway, but I don't know much more than that.

I hope that despite that, I pass.

Long dark hair, blue eyes said...

I think the only thing I learned at school was Clancy of the Overflow. I can recite it in full to this day, and sometimes I do, just to check I still can. Can not to my times table though.

Swift Jan said...

Yes Swift Jim is infact a "draftsman". They are now known however as Civil Designers. He certainly designs roads. Big important ones.

Crazy Sister said...

I rememer being shocked to learn in school that Robin Klein the author was a woman. My Mum had taught me that Robyn with a 'y' was for ladies, and Robin with an 'i' was for men.

Wendy said...

Are you right in blaming it all on Education Queensland? I mean what woman in her right mind would teach the 28 days thing?

Aleta said...

This is great. I love this post. Laughed out loud!!