|by Flemming Funch|
Via BoingBoing, this is part of a eighth grade test from a 1895 Kansas schoolhouse:
1. What is meant by the following: Alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication?
OK, it is just the Orthography section. Not that the other sections are much easier. What the hell happened? In case you don't get the point, here's a sample piece of an 8th grade test from a U.S. school today:
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.
11. What feeling does the author try to communicate about the topic?
I'm not kidding. Most tests are multiple choice in the U.S. So, did major knowledge about education get lost, or were they really not as smart back then as it sounds like?
12. What question does this article try to answer?
E. Are Light Twinkies healthier than regular Twinkies?
F. Why do people like sugary, fatty foods?
G. Do Light Twinkies taste as good as regular Twinkies?
H. Why did the Hostess company invent Light Twinkies?