Monday, January 5, 2009

This Is A Third Grade Question?

I don't like the question that was on my Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader calendar. The question for Saturday and Sunday read "What is another name for the Anasazi people who made homes out of rock in what is now the southwestern United States?" My friends who responded all guessed Hopi. My guess was Pueblo. The answer provided was Cliff Dwellers or The Ancient Ones. The category listed for this question was Grade 3/American History. Is this really being taught in third grade? When I went to school we didn't have an official American History class until seventh grade. Before that we had social studies, which covered more the culture than the history. I am going to ask a favor from my friend Jeff who is a fifth grade teacher. Jeff, will you please check with one of the third grade teachers at your school and see if they cover this? Thank you.

One thought I had about this question is that the producers through it into the show just to make the contestant look dumb. Maybe I am being too cynical, but it wouldn't surprise me for them to do that. After all, the more you can embarrass a contestant the better the ratings. I am skeptical of this being taught. Anasazi strikes me as being too hard a word for third graders. I am not suggesting they are incapable of learning it, I just think it unlikely.

I looked Anasazi up on Wikipedia and they did say that it refers to the ancestors of the Pueblos and the word means Ancient Ones. However the word Anasazi is Navajo and the Pueblos don't like it for that reason. The word can also be translated as ancient enemy. Unfortunately the Pueblos cannot agree on a Pueblo word for them.

I may not have liked the question, but I enjoy researching things so it helped give me a fascinating subject.

Today's question is:
The word "bam" is an example of
A) onomatopoeia
B) alliteration
C) personification.

The category is Grade 5/Language. I missed again so I stand at 2-2. I guess I need to go back to school. Got room for me in your class, Jeff?


Jeff said...

Onamatopeia, assuming I spelled it right.

Travis said...

What Jeff said. That was a "homework" assignment we gave ourselves at the comic book shop a couple of years back. Everyone had to bring an example of onomatopoeia to the shop the next week.

That is how my spell checker, spells it, Jeff,

Jeff said...

Ha! And I was so happy because I knew what it meant right away, being a teacher and all. You can't get me on stuff like fifth grade material!

Winthrop J. Quiggy said...

I don't know if you'll see this, Howard, but I'm posting anyway. I agree with you about the question. I saw one on the actual show that I couldn't believe. It was a 5th grade question, bt still I don'tknow how many high schoolers would have known the answer. "In what decade was Moby Dick published?" That's decade, not century. Incidentally, the answer was the 1850's.