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Taught to Remove all Thought

Count your ideas. Be careful not to have too many. | And if a student dares to have four ideas, instead of three? . . . Toss one out. Only three ideas allowed. I’ve seen students fail assignments because they had the wrong numbers. | And they can’t stop writing that way. Many have told me, even in tears, that they try to write differently, but they can’t. | Brainwashing…

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Ladies and gentlemen [?] we got him.

“Ladies and gentlemen, we got him.” (The Australian)“Ladies and gentlemen — we got him.” (Time) “Ladies and gentlemen: we got him.” (Washington Times) “Ladies and gentlemen… we got him.” (ic Wales) –Ladies and gentlemen [?] we got him. (Google News) Interesting how the various news agencies are punctuating this catchphrase, which will probably soon be as overused as the “road map” metaphor in stories about Israel and Palestine. This will give…

On the Five-Paragraph Essay

Mike says that the five-paragraph format is a shortcut, and “short-cuts — whether a five-paragraph theme or a preemptive military strike — seldom offer lasting solutions.” Amanda says that “[w]hat it generates is more a list than an essay.” I agree with what Amanda says when she argues (implicitly) that it’s not so much the number of paragraphs as it is that the format doesn’t encourage connection-making, critical thinking, or…