Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education

The American Dream at Groton
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Author:  Tracy Gardo [ Tue Oct 21, 2008 5:28 pm ]
Post subject:  The American Dream at Groton

The movie we watched today, “The American Dream at Grotonâ€

Author:  Heather Holland Crow [ Tue Oct 21, 2008 6:40 pm ]
Post subject: 

I agree with you Tracy. College has been a major stepping stone in my life. Some people come to college and completely change everything about themselves. They may change what they believe, how they dress, or what they want to do with their lives. However, my college experience has provided me with the opportunities to strengthen what I already believed and what I want to do with my life. Through different classes and talking with different people, I have been able to learn about other ways of life. Coming from an area where people are almost all the same, I have been exposed to some pretty eye-opening things. I can only hope he means that his college experience will only strengthen what he learned at Groton. It would be a shame for him to go to college and get nothing out of it, or worse, lose what he learned at Groton. We all need to learn about other things while in college, but it is ok to hold on to your beliefs and goals after attending college.

Author:  zach yokley [ Tue Oct 21, 2008 8:03 pm ]
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Personally college has been a huge stepping stone for me, but at the same time college was the first time that I lived away from home. So in that respect going from Groton to college does not seem like a big change in that respect. However, I will say that living on my own was not the only life changing experience in college so in that respect I think that the guy in the movie was wrong, and underestimated the personal growth that we all achieve in college.

Author:  Jennifer Redmond [ Tue Oct 21, 2008 8:39 pm ]
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I think the guy in the movie "American Dream at Gorton" was probably one of those students who saw Gorton as a "stepping stone" into college, and college as a checksheet of some sort that must be completed before entering the workforce. For me college has been a huge stepping stone in my life. I got to meet people outside of my class, major/concentration, and experienced many other things I wouldn't have normally experienced otherwise. I think college has been more than just an expansion of my education, but perhaps an expansion of my being.

Author:  Lloyd Walker [ Thu Oct 23, 2008 11:51 am ]
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I agree Jennifer with your conclusion about the guy from Groton. It did seem like he was completing his list. Groton, Ivy League college, high paying job, then on to wealth building. I think that is why is seems so different to us. For most of the class attending college has been a huge stepping stone, but we didn't have the social and cultural capital that most of the Groton students had. For most of us and maybe all of us success has been something we had to work hard to achieve. My impression was that for most of them success was never in doubt. They come from a long line of successful individuals.

Author:  Heather Rulifson [ Thu Oct 23, 2008 12:30 pm ]
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I don't believe the guy was saying College is unimportant. Rather, I think Groton served as college for him. In a sense, he is away from family. He's living in a learning community with peers his own age. So for him, his experience at Groton probably compared to our experience at College. Maybe he equates Ivy League schools with grades and Groton with growth as an individual and more of a life learning experience. But...then again, maybe I'm reading too much into it.

Author:  Carrie Barlowe [ Thu Oct 23, 2008 7:49 pm ]
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I have to agree with Heather. I don't think the guy in the movie was saying that college was unimportant. Yet, I do not believe that he has the same gratitude for his experience at college that most of us in our class have for ours. To me he was saying college was something he had to do because it was one of the last things that was standing between him and the power he wanted.

Author:  Jessica Mundy [ Fri Oct 24, 2008 8:09 am ]
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I agree that I don't necessarily think the guy meant that he didn't appreciate college or that he wouldn't get anything out of it. I think that he should have reworded or clarified it! I think college has been a stepping stone for me but I also think that high school was too! High school prepared me for what college may be like, especially my high school senior English teacher. Now college is that next stepping stone which is preparing me for what I have always wanted to do, teach.

Author:  Natalie Wolfe [ Sun Oct 26, 2008 10:56 am ]
Post subject:  Private School

I am going to start a new topic about the movie. While watching the movie and then hearing the discussion after I felt that there is a strong feeling of aversion towards private schools. I know that most, if not all of you plan to teach in public school, but have you considered if you are offered a job at a the private level? The film pointed out pretty much all bad points of private school and was slightly offended that this is the opinion that is suppose to accepted by the class. Like homeschooling, I'm going to be the one that pushes those buttons. I do not disagree with the common comment "its an option but not for everyone" but, I can say the exact same thing for public schooling. I guess because public schools have more students than homeschooling or private schools that the majority feel that public school should be where one makes a difference, yet it is the upper class (that we have seen in other videos) That make a difference in the general public of the USA. It is those generations that have expendable money that go on to become our bosses bosses and need educators like you and me. I want to clarify that I do not believe that students in public schools never go on to become the top of the top or make a difference (please don't take my words the wrong way). Although we are taught that the hardest work and the most "at risk" kids are in inner city public schools, what I have seen in private schools is just as many emotionally unstable and drug addicted kids as in public schools (and usually in a much higher concentrated amount). The rich are usually very lonely people and I feel that there is too much negative stigma for educating the rich versus the poor.

Author:  Kristen Bumgarner [ Sun Oct 26, 2008 12:45 pm ]
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In response to the prior posts about the young man's comment at Groton, I think I read into it differently. I felt like he probably viewed Groton as college already. Being a boarding school, he was already away from home and learning at higher levels than he might at a public school. Although, I disagreed with his statement because I don't think he was able to get the true cultural diversity at Groton that he would at college. Overall, Groton most likely consisted of upper class, white, alumni children who have been told their whole life that this is what they'll do. I don't think he experienced or empathized with anyone other than his friends/class because he hadn't been exposed to it.

As a response to Natalie's post, I sort of confused as to what you're stating. When you said "The rich are usually very lonely people and I feel that there is too much negative stigma for educating the rich versus the poor." I found myself confused. Could you or someone else possibly expand on that idea for me? Thanks!

Author:  Natalie Wolfe [ Sun Oct 26, 2008 1:42 pm ]
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What I meant was I feel that in all my ed classes we quite over look the other types of education (private, charter schools, etc) and I feel its because there is a general opinion that kids in public school need more help, more education than private schools because they are usually in the lower classes. I just feel a general sense that rich kids can handle themselves and it is the poor ones we need to concentrate on educating.

Author:  Kimberly Smith [ Sun Oct 26, 2008 9:35 pm ]
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to the original topic:

I agree with most of you that have said the guy feels like he already had a "college experience" at Groton. I agree with Kristen about the cultural diversity that this guy missed out on. Unfortunately, I think his experience at college would not have been much different. Maybe this is wrong of me to stereotype this guy, but I feel like he would have stuck with the same type crowd when he went off to his ivy league college.

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