Wednesday, December 13th, 2006
Coldwater teacher: state curriculum too difficult
By William Kincaid
COLDWATER - Sixth-grade students at Coldwater schools are not ready for the subject matter in the state's social studies curriculum, according to middle school teacher Dan Pohlman.
During a presentation for school board members Tuesday night, Pohlman and other social studies teachers said many of the sixth-graders have never heard of the concepts being taught, let alone how to pronounce them.
Pohlman, who is the social studies department chair, said fellow teacher Aaron Weigel is responsible for covering pre-history, ancient cultures, cultural practices, basic economic ideas, reasons for creating government, interaction between countries and citizen rights and participation.
"It's too much for kids," Pohlman said.
He said middle school language arts teacher Judy Bruns addressed the concern at the Dec. 2 Ohio Education Association Representative Legislative Committee Hearing.
"When she brought this up at the hearing, there was unanimous support, and she was assured by an Ohio Education Standards Board member that because of testing standards, the necessity for this change has already been addressed and that he expects the change to evolve over the next couple of years," Pohlman said.
Superintendent Rich Seas said he understands that some students have difficulty with the subjects, as trying to grasp such ancient and unknown cultures is challenging.
Pohlman did not ask board members to make any changes, but was just letting them know the teachers' concerns. Pohlman's presentation was part of an overall discussion on curriculum in the district.
In other news, high school Spanish teacher Tom Giesige said the varsity scholastic bowl team won the MAC tournament on Monday and ended up in second place for the season behind Versailles.
Giesige said the scholastic bowl team's success is a major statement about the education at Coldwater. He also said he has noticed that those who perform the best in scholastic bowl typically love to read and are somehow involved with music.