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The Three I's: A New Educational Model for Children
                     By Martin H. Levinson


To meet the complex demands made by todays visually oriented, high-tech, fast-moving society a new educational model needs be put in place. In the past that model was the three R’s—reading, ‘riting, and ‘rithmetic. I propose the new model be the three I’s—Imaging, Interneting, and Integer-punching. Imaging’s inclusion in the curriculum is based on the notion that, since a picture is worth a thousand words, it’s wasteful to use language to communicate thoughts and ideas. Need to write a thousand-word essay? Show a picture instead. Have to deliver a lecture? Hold up a couple of photos. Assigned a term paper? Five to ten illustrations should do the trick.

Images have a big advantage over language since they can be grasped right away. For example, a photograph showing a Palestinian house being bulldozed and the family inside being evicted may evoke instant feelings of compassion and outrage that such an act could be perpetrated. An essay discussing the suicide bombing attack that caused that bulldozing to occur takes a lot longer to digest and may cause one to reflect on the matter. But who has time these days to reflect on matters? Only retirees, the unemployed, and people with nothing better to do! Images appeal to our emotions more viscerally than language does and that’s another plus in their favor, as most of us would rather feel something in our hearts than know it in our heads. Because images are processed by the emotional centers in our brain, they don’t confuse us with the facts. They simply bypass them.

To put the emphasis on image education in school, teachers of English and reading should be phased out and photography and cinema instructors phased in; the SAT exam should add a section requiring drawn responses to pictures; and comic books should replace textbooks in reading classes. Implementing these ideas would put our children in a much better position to meet the difficult challenges of the new millennium because in a world where TV, YouTube, and infographs are a major source of information it’s not what you know, it’s what you can show.

Interneting is the second leg of the three-I model. Before emails, people frequently communicated with each other by writing letters, which meant you had know something about the rules of grammar and correct spelling. But there’s no longer a need to master such archaic practices because spell and grammar checking can be done on the computer. And if that results in sentences such as “Eye halve a spelling checker that came with my pea sea that plainly marks four my revue miss steaks eye kin knot sea” that’s no big deal and may help readers to get a chuckle over what they’re reading. Because formal writing has become outmoded it should be jettisoned from the curriculum and Interneting, which includes the use of truncated expressions and emojis should take its place. Why waste time saying you’re “over the moon,” “in seventh heaven,” or “on cloud nine” when IMHO a  will do the trick. The last of the three I’s, integer-punching, involves striking the keys of a calculator to do arithmetic computations. The process is relatively easy to learn and once mastered a person can forget about math. The whole thing is as simple as one, two, and whatever number comes after that.

Imaging, Interneting, and Integer-punching==for effective education in the twenty-first century, the I’s have it!



Invest In Children
By Martin H. Levinson

Some Americans believe that the job of educating children should be shifted to the private sector because public school financing has become too expensive. A number of localities are already moving in this direction and scores of others are considering the notion. There’s dough to be made in school privatization and for those interested in starting up a school here are a few ideas on the subject.

The first thing you’ll need to do is to hire some teachers and that shouldn’t be a problem if the hiring bar is set at the right level. The level I recommend is anybody who has attended school. This will provide a hiring pool of nearly everyone. If you want to be more expansive, offer the job to anyone with a pulse. If you want to get rid of personnel altogether, simply buy a bunch of computers and have the kids learn on their own. In terms of educator salary, I suggest using the following formula: add the number of years a person has attended school to the person’s age, divide by the square root of four, subtract from the number of fish there are in the sea, and multiply by 1. The result will be a negative integer, which means your employees will have to pay you for the privilege of working. If they object to this arrangement offer them fifty cents an hour above the federal minimum wage and if they still complain pitch the job to parking lot attendants and fast-food cooks

Next you’ll need some students. A good way to attract learners is to pay them, and you won’t have to pay them much since they’re getting nothing from the public schools. But make sure you pay them less than their teachers because if you don’t the teachers will quit and enroll as students in your school. Also, since the kids are being paid, you won’t need custodial staff. Have the children clean the school as part of their stipend.

There are loads of ways to conserve on food costs. The best way is to have parents pack lunch for their kids. If this is not practical, have the children grow vegetables and raise beef cattle in the schoolyard. Don’t bother with a school cafeteria. Have the students and teachers eat in the classrooms. This will provide an opportunity for them to bond with each other and you won’t have to employ lunchroom aides.

To save on textbook costs, instruct students to download free educational material on the Internet when they go home. If parents insist that their children receive textbooks tell them these days very few people read books and reading is not essential for success. Watching television is, as Donald Trump has clearly demonstrated.

As far as student transportation, ask the parents to bring their kids to school. In cases where this is not possible have bicycles available for transport and rent them to the youngsters. Children too young to bike can be picked up by older students and placed in the baskets of their bicycles. And here’s a bonus: because biking is great exercise you won’t need phys. ed. instructors.

Your students will probably have to take standardized tests and your success, and theirs, will be determined by how well they do on these exams. To ensure everyone’s chances of succeeding, order the teachers to teach only to the tests and it they are allowed to grade the exams tell them to change incorrect answers to correct ones to make sure the scores are high. Hey, if the teachers haven’t taught the students well enough so that the kids could achieve good marks on their own, they owe this form of extra help to their charges.

Like any private enterprise, there’s always a chance you won’t make it in the education biz. If that happens do not despair. Your students can always go back to the public schools and your teachers, if you hired the group I suggested, can go back to their old jobs. The important thing is you gave it a try. You tried to make a buck off the kids, you tried to rip off your staff, and you tried to scam the system. The robber barons of the nineteenth century would have envied your efforts to make a profit from education and I’m sure the moguls around today would feel the same way. Besides, there are plenty of other ways to make money. For instance, privatizing the military. I know a great place where you can buy secondhand weapons and ammunition for a song.