Sunday, August 28, 2005

History: It's All A Matter Of Perspective

Over at What It's Like on the Inside, they have introduced us to a unique resource from Beloit College called the "Mindset List" that helps us teachers put things into perspective by letting us know some of the environmental factors that have helped shape students' views about the world around them.

Here is
the complete Mindset List for the high school graduating class of 2006:

1. A Southerner has always been President of the United States.
2. Richard Burton, Ricky Nelson and Truman Capote have always been dead.
3. South Africa's official policy of apartheid has not existed during their lifetime.
4. Cars have always had eye-level rear stop lights, CD players, and air bags.
5. We have always been able to choose our long distance carriers.
6. Weather reports have always been available 24-hours a day on television.
7. The "evil empire" has moved from Moscow to a setting in some distant galaxy.
8. Big Brother is merely a television show.
9. Cyberspace has always existed.
10. Bruce Springsteen's new hit, Born in the USA, could have been played to celebrate their birth.
11. Barbie has always had a job.
12. Telephone bills have always been totally incomprehensible.
13. Prom dresses have always come in basic black.
14. A "Hair Band" is some sort of fashion accessory.
15. George Foreman has always been a barbecue grill salesman.
16. Afghanistan has always been a front page story.
17. There has always been an heir to the heir to the British throne.
18. They have no recollection of Connie Chung or Geraldo Rivera as serious journalists.
19. Peter Jennings, Dan Rather, and Tom Brokaw have always anchored the evening news.
20. China has always been a market-based reforming regime.
21. The United States has always been trying to put nuclear waste in Nevada.
22. The U.S. and the Soviets have always been partners in space.
23. Mrs. Fields' cookies and Swatch watches have always been favorites.
24. Nicolas Cage, Daryll Hannah, Eddie Murphy, and John Malkovich made their first major film impressions the year they were born.
25. The GM Saturn has always been on the road.
26. The "Fab Four" are not a male rock group, but four women enjoying Sex and the City.
27. Fox has always been a television network choice.
28. Males do not carry a handkerchief in a back pocket.
29. This generation has never wanted to "be a Pepper too."
30. Ozzy's lifestyle has nothing to do with the Nelson family.
31. Women have always had tattoos.
32. Vanessa Williams and Madonna are aging singers.
33. Perrier has always come in flavors.
34. Cherry Coke has always come in cans.
35. A "hotline" is a consumer service rather than a phone used to avoid accidental nuclear war.
36. The drug "ecstasy" has always been around.
37. Genetic testing and DNA screening have always been available.
38. Electronic filing of federal income taxes has always been an option.
39. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) has always been available to doctors.
40. Trivial Pursuit may have been played by their parents the night before they were born.
41. The U.S. has always maintained that it has a "clear right to use force against terrorism."
42. The drinking age has always been 21 throughout the country.
43. Women have always been members of the Jaycees.
44. The center of chic has shifted from Studio 54 to Liza's living room, live!
45. Julian Lennon had his only hit the year they were born.
46. Sylvan Learning Centers have always been an after-school option.
47. Hip-hop and rap have always been popular musical forms.
48. They grew up in minivans.
49. Scientists have always recognized the impact of acid rain.
50. The Coen Brothers have always been making films.

I agree with On the Inside's observation that these lists make me feel old. But then again, getting older is a lot more preferable than The Alternative.
View the latest edition of The Carnival Of Education as well as entry instructions for next week's edition right here.

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