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TomF
05-22-2015, 11:13 AM
Or at least, 8th graders.

Apparently a third of American 8th graders think that Canada is a dictatorship (http://www.cbc.ca/news/trending/one-third-of-american-8th-graders-think-canada-is-a-dictatorship-1.3082239). The researchers put this down to ignorance about our democratic systems, and about the world outside America in general. A simple knowledge gap seems like the Occam's Razor explanation for thinking your closest ally and biggest trading partner is a dictatorship ...

Alternatively, maybe these kids have been paying attention to Canada's polity over the last decade, and are pretty astute. :D

S.V. Airlie
05-22-2015, 11:16 AM
Heck, I'm surprised they know WHERE Canada is!

Phillip Allen
05-22-2015, 11:17 AM
school doesn't seem concerned with education anymore...

S.V. Airlie
05-22-2015, 11:20 AM
Just tests! Schools are now technically businesses!

Paul Pless
05-22-2015, 11:21 AM
There's a poster to this very thread who considers y'all to be subjects of the queen. :D

RonW
05-22-2015, 11:22 AM
TomF..
Apparently a third of American 8th graders think that Canada is a dictatorship.

That's just nuts, we sure weren't taught anything like that when I wen to school long ago...

We were taught, that canada is a frozen wasteland to the north with a lot of trees and it was ruled by a monarchy, and was part of the Queen's land and the people that lived there are subjects of the Queen's...

S.V. Airlie
05-22-2015, 11:24 AM
As in England, the Queen has subjects but, her only responsibility is to advise! She can't dictate!

paulf
05-22-2015, 11:24 AM
When I was a kid I was going to run away to Canada and become a fur trapper. Then I found out in Sarinia (my grand parents lived in Port Huron) that they are just as goofed up as the US.

Phillip Allen
05-22-2015, 11:24 AM
and they speak a kind of pigeon English...

S.V. Airlie
05-22-2015, 11:26 AM
and they speak a kind of pigeon English...Ya, probably the Queen's English.:)

RonW
05-22-2015, 11:27 AM
and they speak a kind of pigeon English...

They eat tree bark too...and they do the same thing in the woods that bears do.....

TomF
05-22-2015, 11:27 AM
and they speak a kind of pigeon English...Now that's messed up - our pigeons can't talk.

TomF
05-22-2015, 11:28 AM
When I was a kid I was going to run away to Canada and become a fur trapper. Then I found out in Sarinia (my grand parents lived in Port Huron) that they are just as goofed up as the US.I know a couple of folks who run traplines in the Winter. But then, I live in small town New Brunswick, not Toronto.

Phillip Allen
05-22-2015, 11:29 AM
Now that's messed up - our pigeons can't talk.

how do you explain stool pigeons then?

TomF
05-22-2015, 11:30 AM
TomF..

That's just nuts, we sure weren't taught anything like that when I wen to school long ago...

We were taught, that canada is a frozen wasteland to the north with a lot of trees and it was ruled by a monarchy, and was part of the Queen's land and the people that lived there are subjects of the Queen's...So education in some parts of America has been in decline for a while then? :D

TomF
05-22-2015, 11:32 AM
how do you explain stool pigeons then?If you keep your pigeons active instead of letting them laze around on stools all day, they're too busy to learn how to talk.

RonW
05-22-2015, 11:32 AM
So education in some parts of America has been in decline for a while then? :D

I wouldn't say that, it is just that no one cared or thought there was any importance to canada...It was considered kinda like siberia is to russia..

Michael D. Storey
05-22-2015, 11:33 AM
Or at least, 8th graders.

Apparently a third of American 8th graders think that Canada is a dictatorship (http://www.cbc.ca/news/trending/one-third-of-american-8th-graders-think-canada-is-a-dictatorship-1.3082239).

It's Elizabeth on the money. They think she's the dictator.

TomF
05-22-2015, 11:35 AM
I wouldn't say that, it is just that no one cared or thought there was any importance to canada...It was considered kinda like siberia is to russia..Pretty much. Our standard metaphor is the mouse in bed with the elephant.

Apparently things like Keystone have changed a few minds on that "importance" thing on your side of the border, but it's too soon for Social Studies classes to have caught up.

TomF
05-22-2015, 11:35 AM
It's Elizabeth on the money. They think she's the dictator.We just think she's cute.

S.V. Airlie
05-22-2015, 11:40 AM
Queen Victoria on a coin
http://thumbs2.ebaystatic.com/d/l225/m/mtee-n8KT8zoHp-IhvwclZg.jpg

Canoeyawl
05-22-2015, 11:50 AM
Ya, probably the Queen's English.:)

Probably French, which it was.

S.V. Airlie
05-22-2015, 11:52 AM
In parts, certainly!

Canoeyawl
05-22-2015, 11:56 AM
Canadian coin, 1721

http://img.ma-shops.com/sesambestcoins/pic/89496.jpg

Michael D. Storey
05-22-2015, 12:01 PM
We just think she's cute.

So, that great medical system of yours does not cover vision?

TomF
05-22-2015, 12:03 PM
So, that great medical system of yours does not cover vision?Never said she was a roaring babe. :D My granny was cute at that age too, though she'd lost a few more marbles by then.

Michael D. Storey
05-22-2015, 12:15 PM
My personal experience with Canadians has come from three main sources
1. Yacht racing on The Lakes
2. My Mother's second husband's ancestral home on the South Coast of Nova Scotia
3. Stan Rogers

I do not feel that that 'poll' of eighth graders reflects the U.S.' opinion of Canada. Jokes about beavers aside, I do not remember ( I still have my memory) ever hearing an insult meaningfully slung from this side of the border northwards. We, in fact, in my opinion, like you guys more than we like anyone else. Somedays ourselves included.
The real test is what we feel about the food of foreign lands. We use the name of foods to describe nationalities. Why is 'limey' ok, but 'beaner' not? Why is 'Brit' okay but 'Jap' not? (I happen to have in my considerable collection of ephemera, a cover of Variety Magazine from the 1920's, describing a Japanese Jazz Pianoman who was performing in Boston with the headline 'Hip Nip in Hub.' But I digresssss) Why is American cheese known as Canadian cheese in Canada? If you are so smart, why do you call it food? It serves best as an emergency plug for radiator leaks.

If those Canadians are so smart, why did they pick us for neighbors, is what I wanna know!

TomF
05-22-2015, 01:13 PM
...Why is American cheese known as Canadian cheese in Canada? If you are so smart, why do you call it food? It serves best as an emergency plug for radiator leaks.

If those Canadians are so smart, why did they pick us for neighbors, is what I wanna know!Brilliant questions. There's no acceptable answer to the first one; one might as well ask why many of our respective countrymen drink something they call "beer" which is nothing like an accurate description.

I figure that we picked you pretty well as neighbours, actually. Incredible access to the 2 IMO all-redeeming cultural blessings America's brought to the world: jazz, and rock & roll. Barbeque would get into that list too if the real thing were exportable.

Michael D. Storey
05-22-2015, 01:30 PM
Brilliant questions. There's no acceptable answer to the first one; one might as well ask why many of our respective countrymen drink something they call "beer" which is nothing like an accurate description.

I figure that we picked you pretty well as neighbours, actually. Incredible access to the 2 IMO all-redeeming cultural blessings America's brought to the world: jazz, and rock & roll. Barbeque would get into that list too if the real thing were exportable.

The word 'barbeque' comes from an Arrowak word for bed, describing the shape of the structure make out of green branches, underwhich a fire was make and on top of which was placed meat.

Thatsed, you are too gracious, Sir.

Gerarddm
05-22-2015, 01:32 PM
Whatever happened to the Mackenzie Brothers, eh? :-)

As a kid my view of Canada was formed by National Geographic articles with titles like Friendly Giant To The North. Etc.

johnw
05-22-2015, 07:10 PM
Or at least, 8th graders.

Apparently a third of American 8th graders think that Canada is a dictatorship (http://www.cbc.ca/news/trending/one-third-of-american-8th-graders-think-canada-is-a-dictatorship-1.3082239). The researchers put this down to ignorance about our democratic systems, and about the world outside America in general. A simple knowledge gap seems like the Occam's Razor explanation for thinking your closest ally and biggest trading partner is a dictatorship ...

Alternatively, maybe these kids have been paying attention to Canada's polity over the last decade, and are pretty astute. :D

That's an interesting interpretation of the result.


Back to sample questions (http://www.nationsreportcard.gov/hgc_2014/#civics/questions)
204 - Identify similarities between three governments (What are civic life, politics, and government?) What do the current governments of Canada, France, and Australia have in common?


A. They are controlled by the military.
B. They have constitutions that limit their power.
C. They have leaders with absolute power.
D. They discourage participation by citizens in public affairs.



Correct Answer: B
Question Commentary:
This question from Theme 1 (politics and government) requires students to recognize contemporary examples of particular types of government.
Option B is correct. Canada, France, and Australia each have constitutions that limit the power of the federal government. Options A, C, and D are incorrect. Canada, France, and Australia each have limits on the power of the military and the powers of their leaders. Additionally, in these countries the participation of citizens in public affairs is not discouraged by the government.

Percentage of eighth-grade students
in each response category: 2014
Choice A
Choice B
Choice C
Choice D
Omitted


10
54
23
12
1


NOTE: Detail may not sum to totals because of rounding.



It would appear that more than half got it right, the rest were guessing. Still a distressing result.