The Saber-Tooth Curriculum
Chap. VI The Paleolithic Youth Problem
Dr. Peddiwell lectures Benjamin about the sad situation that young people were going through and that unfortunately was not susceptible to treatment by educators. Dr. Peddiwelll makes reference to a "wall of progress" and that the president of the First National Bank and secretary of the Chamber of Commerce always make believes that a ladder is the only way to climb over this "wall." But Dr. Peddiwell pointed out that there is more than one way to get over the "wall." His lecture talked about how this same problem persisted in Paleolithic days. Back then the desire of all young people was to go to college and become a medicine man, an engineer, a chief, but most young students could not afford going to school. However, those that were able to attend and finish school did not have too much luck finding employment. Because there was no work some of youngsters will turn to robbery, but found that was too risky. Others survived by the allowance given by parents. The young adults learned to amused themselves at the rock piles. Once there youngsters would arrange the rocks from small like the size of marble to as large as bowling balls. This kept the young people busy, whether by classifying rocks or by using this time as leisure to various games. The tribe's chief selected a committee to come up with a solution to youth unemployment problem. One solution proposed by a college professor was to help young people continue their education. The idea is to better prepare the youngster for the future. Another solution was to use the young healthy people to replace the older people that were no longer being effective at their jobs. Young people just wanted to be able to work; they felt like they would be more productive to the tribe if they were working rather than wasting their skills in leisure time at the rock piles. The committee decided to set up a special administration that would create new games, a better ways to improve the time at rock piles. This new administration would set up new rules and monitor the young people at the rock piles. Dr. Peddiwell ends his lecture by saying that a stranger showed up at one of the rock piles and asked a supervisor if there was any "education"? The supervisor answers the stranger by telling him that there is no education going on, just mere leisure time.
The main characters in this chapter are the young people during the Paleolithic days. These youngsters seemed motivated to continue their education, however the cost of higher education was too expensive for most to afford and also there were no jobs guaranteed for those that completed their education.
Current Math Issues
It is mentioned in the chapter that one of the reasons why some young people were unable to attend college was because it was unaffordable to most. This is en educational issue that still occurs nowadays. The cost of higher education is very expensive, even if a student takes out a loan, the student is in debt before he/she gets his/her first job. Another issue that is presented in this chapter is the need for young people to start working so that they are able to provide and help maintain the family. This is also currently happening right now. For example, newly immigrated families have to depend on everyone to bring some income home. Young children are forced to work so that everyone is helping out financially. One could argue that there is percentage of young adults that do not finish their high school education because their families need to work instead of going to school.
During the great depression everything was difficult about education. There were not that many teacher due to salary cuts, and students instead of attending school would rather go to work to help the family. John Dewey a PhD philosopher from the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences at John Hopkins University knew that things had to change. The only problem he encountered was how. He was an American philosopher, psychologist, and educational reformer, and he greatly changed the educational system in the United States. Dewey wanted facts to be taught, not just told to students. He also thought that problem solving should be studied rather than just memorizing lessons. John Dewey was trying to create educational reforms during the time. He mostly succeeded.