Something They Will Not Forget: A Handbook for Classical Teachersby:
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With a foreword by Karen Swallow Prior.
Every teacher has suffered the demoralizing realization that most students quickly forget the content they are taught. Many sophomores, for example, could not pass a literature exam or history quiz which they aced during freshman year. While most teachers are too embarrassed to admit this, their students know it is true, which leads many students to think school is ultimately pointless. What is more, students know that most missed class periods can be made up with five minutes of homework, which leads them to believe that every hour-long class they attend is a fifty-five minute waste of time. This is not simply the state of American public schools, but many classical schools, as well.
But what if there was another way of conducting class? What if every class was vital, necessary, and worth going to? What if students no longer had to admit they couldn’t remember much of the material they studied in previous years? What if teachers could make the most of all their class time, including the first five minutes, when students are chatty and their brains are still stuck in their last subject?
In Something They Will Not Forget, Joshua Gibbs lays out a solution to these problems which is both elegant and effective. His solution caters to classical beliefs and presuppositions but is easily implemented in any classroom— elementary or secondary, public or private, traditional school or homeschool. If you have struggled with classroom management, dull exams (which you dread grading), or a feeling of helplessness when confronted by how quickly students forget, help is here.
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