Why Teach the Future?

by Peter C. Bishop & Kay E. Strong


Subjects taught in school change with the times. Educated Romans learned Latin at home, but learning Greek as a second language enabled them to read the philosophy and science of their day. The medieval university taught seven subjects – the trivium (grammar, logic and rhetoric) and the quadrivium (arithmetic, geometry, music and astronomy) as foundations for the advanced study of philosophy and theology. Physical science entered the curriculum in the 17th and 18th centuries; biology followed in the 19th and social science in the 20th. Penmanship was an important subject for a long time, but now students learn keyboarding and computer literacy. Ideally, the curriculum prepares students for participation in the world they will join as adults.

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