General Debate 30/03/11

8th Grade Final Exam: Salina, Kansas – 1895

This is the eighth-grade final exam* from 1895 from Salina, Kansas. It was taken from the original document on file at the Smoky Valley Genealogical Society and Library in Salina, Kansas and reprinted by the Salina Journal.

Grammar (Time, one hour)
1. Give nine rules for the use of Capital Letters.
2. Name the Parts of Speech and define those that have no modifications.
3. Define Verse, Stanza and Paragraph.
4. What are the Principal Parts of a verb? Give Principal Parts of do, lie, lay and run.
5. Define Case, Illustrate each Case.
6. What is Punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of Punctuation.
7-10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar.

Arithmetic (Time, 1.25 hours)
1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.
2. A wagon box is 2 ft. deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?
3. If a load of wheat weighs 3942 lbs., what is it worth at 50cts. per bu, deducting 1050 lbs. for tare?
4. District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?
5. Find cost of 6720 lbs. coal at $6.00 per ton.
6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.
7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft. long at $.20 per inch?
8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.
9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance around which is 640 rods?
10.Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.

U.S. History (Time, 45 minutes)
1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided.
2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus.
3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.
4. Show the territorial growth of the United States.
5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas.
6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.
7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton, Bell, Lincoln, Penn, and Howe?
8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607, 1620, 1800, 1849, and 1865?

Orthography (Time, one hour)
1. What is meant by the following: Alphabet, phonetic orthography, etymology, syllabication?
2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?
3. What are the following, and give examples of each: Trigraph, subvocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals?
4. Give four substitutes for caret ‘u’.
5. Give two rules for spelling words with final ‘e’. Name two exceptions under each rule.
6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.
7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: Bi, dis, mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, super.
8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: Card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.
9. Use the following correctly in sentences, Cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane, vain, vein, raze, raise, rays.
10.Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.

Geography (Time, one hour)
1. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?
2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas?
3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?
4. Describe the mountains of N.A.
5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver, Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon, St. Helena, Juan Fermandez, Aspinwall and Orinoco.
6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.
7. Name all the republics of Europe and give capital of each.
8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?
9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.
10.Describe the movements of the earth. Give inclination of the earth.

April 13, 1895 J.W. Armstrong, County Superintendent.Examinations at Salina, New Cambria, Gypsum City, Assaria, Falun, Bavaria, and District No. 74 (in Glendale Twp.)”

27 thoughts on “General Debate 30/03/11

  1. I’d bet this would be well above grade for what’s examined today, while that would contain a substantial number of socialist relevant topics such as “human rights”, “climate change” and social studies with a good dose of cultural relativism and a serving of post-modern egalitarianism, topped of with some sex education.

    One doesn’t have to go back in time that long though for similar serious materials. Even in the 1960’s material at that grade level was up to a good standard, that is looking at good schools at the higher levels of the spectrum. (Note that in many countries secondary school starts at what the US calls level 6, and there may be huge differences between secondary school curricula).

    The rot really set in about the 70’s, and got progressively worse after that, to the extent that many 8th graders today wouldn’t even be able to understand the questions asked in this 19th century example.


  2. Fark me……back to the 7th grade!

    I know this one…..
    1. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?

    AGW and CO2 of course.


  3. Come on people ! These poor souls didn’t have a fucking clue as to what a quality education was back then:

    Where’s the fake environmental religion? Where’s the lionizing of the indigenous vs the dissing of colonial/Western culture? Where are the questions on wimmin in history? Where’s the material on diversity and tolerance? And worst of all, these students clearly haven’t been reading Heather Has Two Mommies or Daddy’s Roommate either.

    Very sad.


  4. mawm. Wrong, and 3 points off for smart-arsery. The correct answer is:

    Climate depends on man’s ability to tax himself back to the stone-age, to remove a sufficient amount of dangerous CO2 from the atmosphere and thus reduce the overall global temperature by a suitable amount. This is based on a scientific formula which will save mankind from the destructive and disastrous events of the 18th, 19th, 20th and (now) 21st centuries (collectively called ‘Progress’).

    A sufficient of CO2 removed from the atmosphere means a reduction of 0.00000000002 parts-per-million.
    A suitable amount of temperature reduction is 0.00005 degrees, centigrade.
    A reasonable level of cost for accomplishing this triumph is to multiple each of the elements (CO2 and temperature) by 1 trillion, then add a zero at the back end and a dollar sign at the front (ie 50,000,000 * 20 = 10,000,000,000. Add 3 zeroes to the end and a dollar sign at the front = $100,000,000,000,000 or $100 trillion dollars).


  5. I understand that the Law School at Victoria University has had to hold remedial classes for reading. Mind you I wager the new students can do a “mean as” haka, “eh, bros?”


  6. Another question which could have been posed in 1895 would be: “Is it remotely possible that a socialist of indeterminate birthright, with an Arabic middle name, will become President in 2008?” If “yes,” “will he be a success or a stinking failure with the gift of the gab?”


  7. Or perhaps: “write a 250 word essay on why the constitution mandates that a president of the USA must be a natural born citizen”


  8. Bez, that is one question that could be answered with a multiple choice

    Choose from:
    A -Yes;

    B -No


  9. RedBaiter,

    NZ’s history curriculum is much the same. I had a look at my son’s Year 9 social studies book and just about gagged. Thank goodness he has a good smattering of Greek and Roman history, though we didn’t get nearly as far as I wanted to before he started school.

    Recently, they studied Afganistan, and my son got the impression that his teacher was somewhat taken with Islam. He also said everything she said was very convincing, and he didn’t know enough to argue any point, but he knew the focus of what she was saying was wrong. Especially after discussing his lessons a number of times with me at home.


  10. Mawm- thanks for the link to that article. Great cartoon too. I’ve got three on Obama I’m going to run when I get a chance.

    Lucia- I see where Karen Sewell has resigned. Receiving much acclaim. Anyone involved with NZ education over the last forty years has nothing to be proud of. (IMHO)


  11. Yep! – the linked to article in your 13:20 comment got my blood boiling, Red!

    And Gillard & Macintyre have the gall to “argue that the new national history curriculum is balanced and that critics are wrong to label it left-wing.”

    Two faced lying bastards!


  12. Red,

    Not just the last 40 years. All the way back to when a number of Western Governments became enamoured of the Prussian experiment, that in a very short time lead to a predicable, easily manipulated society. Once education became compulsory, it became easy for the government of the day to mould it’s citizens. In spite of intense initial parental opposition.


  13. School time should never be wasted on such bullshit as social studies. It achieves nothing other than to provide a soapbox for the extreme left wing teachers’ union to peddle their poison onto children. The schools should teach nothing apart from that which is needed to be gainful-employment ready when they leave, i.e. well prepared for productivity and enterprise. These days they are being groomed for a life of laziness, stupidity, and blind obedience to the government and the media.



  14. I see where Karen Sewell has resigned.

    Karen Sewell, as Principal of Green Bay High School absolutely fucked the place from the early 80’s to the mid nineties . . kids smoking, wagging – no repercussions, uniform and grooming standards out the window, academic standards out the window, a focus on all of this “expressing pasifika culture” bullshit. It’s fitting that both she and her “partner” Frances Salt have occupied such high positions in that clusterfuck of a system.


  15. “(it doesn’t provide a bullet proof refutation though)”

    I don’t see that it does either. It basically just tries to attack the idea that education has declined since then. Snopes is a husband and wife team already known to be hopelessly Progressive and their partisan analysis of this document proves that when it comes to anything political they, like Wikipedia, cannot be trusted.


  16. “It’s fitting that both she and her “partner” Frances Salt have occupied such high positions in that clusterfuck of a system.”

    I’m a bit short on time today otherwise I would have written something on it. I suspected that some research would probably turn up that kind of info Angus, but I couldn’t find any in the short time I spent looking.


  17. Bez: The reason why the USA Constitution requires the President to be US born was to preclude the Poms coming back in after Independence and exerting their earlier Royal control. I initially thought this reason had now become outdated, but if it serves to disqualify Muslims, Poms or members of the NZ Labour Party from being President then it is indeed worthy! Mind you, I think the She-Beast hungers for world dominance and not simply US honours.


  18. Sorry for changing the topic out of the blue but I’m just watching some classic BBC TV and I’ve discovered something … Evil has a name and it is:

    Sir Humphrey Appleby

    I never realised ‘Yes Minister’ was a documentary!


  19. “I never realised ‘Yes Minister’ was a documentary!”

    Well, for all the chicanery, there was at least some evidence of principle.

    Brilliant scripts.


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