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Thursday, June 14, 2007

Are You Ruder Than a 5th Grader?

Tonight I watched Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader while I sat on the couch writing wedding thank you notes. (Yes... still working on those. Sigh.) I have seen the show two or three times before, and I generally enjoy it. (Although I find it disheartening to see how many people are woefully ignorant - and sometimes I'm afraid I find myself falling into that category as well!)

Tonight's show featured a young waitress as a competitor. The first question was quite basic: "Alanna always ate anchovies" (or something like that) is an example of A) alliteration B) past tense C) compound sentence. The woman was able to answer this question correctly only through repeatedly attempting a process of elimination. The second question asked: if two boys on one anothers' shoulders measured 2 1/2 yards high, how many feet high were they? The answer, of course, is 7.5 feet. This young woman, however, was unable to solve the problem because she was completely unable to determine how many feet are in a yard. One guess she gave, was, in fact, "352 feet in a yard."

At this point, the host of the show asked where she had attended school, and then said, "Sounds like you were homeschooled!"

As a former homeschooler myself (K-12, all the way), I naturally find this comment extremely rude. Can someone really get away with saying something so offensive and and un-informed on network television? I hope he gets in trouble with his producers - and I hope a former homeschooler goes on that show and wins the big bucks sometime soon!


  1. Wow, I thought homeschoolers were starting to get a bit more respect in the public square. That comment was ridiculous, and I do hope someone calls him on it.

  2. It's really amazing how pop culture feels they have free reign when it comes to home schooling (and spelling bee contestants, for that matter). On the upside, you can always make a dramatic point by saying, "Well, actually, I was home schooled." People are then interested and ask a lot of questions... and if my two years aren't enough experience, I bring up my smart cousins who went all the way through :)

  3. Maybe you should write the network. Because he won't be called on it unless someone complains, and it would be nice if the one complaining was as articulate as you are. :)

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  5. That truly is an incredibly ignorant thing to say. The only problem with your hope that a former homeschooler will go on and win the big bucks is that I'm sure the show screens for the dumbest people they can find. That's probably how they found the host, actually. I second the idea of writing the network. If you do, post your letter on your blog!

  6. Anonymous8:47 PM

    Yegh, shocking. That's unkind.

    Well anyway Sarah I stopped by to get the link to that Pachelbel guitarist fun stuff =) but how apalling!

    (Did I spell that correctly? I wonder how many fifth-graders... nevermind)

    Charlie, finally off the T