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DDs teacher giving serious misinformation WWYD?

(343 Posts)
phantomnamechanger Thu 09-Jan-14 20:51:31

How to deal with this please......

DD has recently got a new English teacher. They are reading Pride & Prejudice (just started). Today in the lesson, the teacher has on several occasions referred to it being set in "the Victorian era"
that's a massive error to make, right? how do we point this out? DD was like hmm when she told me, but there will be other kids who believe the teacher and for whom that will stick.
DD did not want to correct the teacher for fear of being reprimanded/thought rude.

Ubik1 Thu 09-Jan-14 21:07:37

Yes -i'm always reminded of all the bath houses, when I read Austen.

RevoltingPeasant Thu 09-Jan-14 21:08:29

Well if you want to be really picky it was probably largely drafted in the 1790s grin

Which just makes the teacher even wronger...

JodieGarberJacob Thu 09-Jan-14 21:08:49

Sorry, that's correct. I was thinking he was Regent from 1820 to 1830 but that was when he was kingblush

ClaudiusGalen Thu 09-Jan-14 21:10:25

Yes, actually Regency 1811-1820. Regency era in terms of definite trends in architecture, literature etc is 1795-1837.

I'm a HOD, teachers make mistakes, we are only human. This one is worrying though, because if you are teaching a novel you should know it backwards, including the context.

Austen known generally as a 'Regency era' writer, rather than Georgian.

BettyBotter Thu 09-Jan-14 21:10:50

Just email her and let her know that somehow dd has picked up the wrong end of the stick and clearly wrongly believes P&P is Victorian. You're sure the teacher will want to know the class have this misconception so she can clear it up.

Ubik1 Thu 09-Jan-14 21:11:13

Yes Jane Austen died in 1817 (?)

ClaudiusGalen Thu 09-Jan-14 21:15:02

Austen of course was quite scathing about Prinny and was very unhappy about having to dedicate Emma to him.

Coldlightofday Thu 09-Jan-14 21:15:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

phantomnamechanger Thu 09-Jan-14 21:18:12

Why doesn't your daughter just stick her hand up and tell the teacher she's wrong?

Because DD is wary of a new teacher of unknown temperament. This teacher does not know whether DD is an A* student (which she is) or the class clown/trouble maker. Teachers do not always take kindly to being corrected in public, or react graciously to finding out they are wrong about something. They might even go for the deny deny deny option and insist they are right, leaving DD feeling like a fool. Or give her such a telling off for being so rude that she ends up in tears. Or bear a grudge and make DDs life a misery.

LRDtheFeministDragon Thu 09-Jan-14 21:18:56

My teacher taught us this, too! I felt like such a twit when I found out and feel a bit better now. For ages I had an image in my head that someone the clothes you see Vic wearing in her early portraits were completely separate from the clothes you saw in Austen films ... no idea why.

Coldlightofday Thu 09-Jan-14 21:19:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LRDtheFeministDragon Thu 09-Jan-14 21:20:09

Btw, if it were me, I think I'd go for the surreptitious nudge about dates, as others suggest. Tough on your DD though.

I don't think dd should tell the teacher she's wrong, for all of the reasons you say. Is the teacher fairly young/recently qualified maybe? I do think an email to the Head of English is the best way forward, just asking for clarification rather than guns blazing - "I wonder if dd has got the wrong end of the stick but she seems to think that Miss has saidX; can you check with miss what she was actually saying, as dd was hoping to do a bit of research and wanted to make sure she was doing the right thing" maybe?

phantomnamechanger Thu 09-Jan-14 21:23:42

So whatcha going to do then, OP?

I'm leaning towards Bettys suggestion atm....

Blanketsandpillows Thu 09-Jan-14 21:23:46

It does need to be addressed, and the teacher needs to be told; but I would just email the teacher and point out the error. I wouldn't email the Head of Department-it is a big mistake but I'm not convinced it's that big! (But if you spotted further, similar errors you could contact the Head of Dept)

ClaudiusGalen Thu 09-Jan-14 21:25:41

Can I say that only on MN do people seem to go out of their way to not just say 'I think this has happened, can you investigate?' I've never had contact from a parent in RL that was couched in so much obvious flannel. Just be direct and polite and let the HOD do their job.

harticus Thu 09-Jan-14 21:26:24

It is quite possible that the teacher may say "Oh yes you are right ... I am a useless tit.... thank you for pointing it out ... have 500 house points."

What kind of school doesn't encourage or expect participation and involvement of students regardless of whether the teacher is new and "of unknown temperament" (which makes her sound like a feisty Doberman puppy). Is it some kind of archaic private school where children are not expected to have a voice?

If the teacher reacts badly to your DD then take it further.

RevoltingPeasant Thu 09-Jan-14 21:28:19

See, when I was at school I would totally have raised my hand and said "but if PP was published in 1813 and Victoria didn't ascend the throne till '37, how is it Victorian?"

...and just waited for what she said.

But I appreciate that's a cultural thing maybe as I grew up in the States.

Also wouldn't worry about correcting her in public if she's making an error of that magnitude. If I talked crap to my students I'd expect to get called on it.

signet Thu 09-Jan-14 21:35:48

The Victorian era doesn't just refer to the time when Queen Victoria was on the throne. We use it to refer to a period of time within which there were Victorian sentiments. There is no actual start or finish time amongst academics. It's an ongoing argument, but its basically split into 3 periods with the early Victorian period beginning any time from 1800 onwards and the late Victorian period incorporating part of the Edwardian period. So academically speaking the teacher isn't wrong.

Ubik1 Thu 09-Jan-14 21:42:32

Oh well if DD is unsure of teacher then thr suggestion of a quiet email to HoD should sort it - and that way your DD stays out of it smile

Mim78 Thu 09-Jan-14 21:43:04

Please don't get dd to say anything as someone has suggested - teachers don't always take kindly to having errors pointed out by kids!

I would have a word either with her or HOD yourself though.

LRDtheFeministDragon Thu 09-Jan-14 21:51:07

But, signet, would you actually tell students Austen was writing in the Victorian period? Surely at GCSE you would need to be precise, even if academics don't go for end-stopped period boundaries?

clam Thu 09-Jan-14 21:51:58

teachers don't always take kindly to having errors pointed out by kids!

But they might take even less kindly to being bollocked by the HOD after a parental complaint. I'd give her the chance to be magnanimous about it, but if she's arsey to your dd about it, then you can contact the HOD with a clear conscience and serves the bee-atch right.

Caitlin17 Thu 09-Jan-14 21:52:09

signet if you told someone in Edinburgh or Bath who lives in a house built before Victoria came to the throne that it was Victorian rather than Georgian, well - good luck, I wouldn't chance it!

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