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Thread: Remember when

  1. #1
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    Remember when

    Remember when grandparents and great-grandparents stated that they only had an 8th grade education? Well, check this out. Could any of us have passed the 8th grade in 1895?

    This is the eighth-grade final exam from 1895 in Salina , Kansas , USA . It was taken from the original document on file at the Smokey Valley Genealogical Society
    And Library in Salina , and reprinted by the Salina Journal.

    8th Grade Final Exam: Salina , KS - 1895

    Grammar (Time, one hour)
    1. Give nine rules for the use of capital letters.
    2. Name the parts of speech and define those that have no modifications.
    3. Define verse, stanza and paragraph
    4. What are the principal parts of a verb? Give principal parts of 'lie,''play,' and 'run.'
    5. Define case; illustrate each case.
    6 What is punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of punctuation.
    7 - 10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar.


    Arithmetic (Time,1 hour 15 minutes)
    1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.
    2. A wagon box is 2 ft. Deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. Wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?
    3. If a load of wheat weighs 3,942 lbs., what is it worth at 50cts/bushel, deducting 1,050 lbs. For tare?
    4. District No 33 has a valuation of $35,000.. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?
    5. Find the cost of 6,720 lbs. Coal at $6.00 per ton.
    6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.
    7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft.. Long at $20 per metre?
    8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.
    9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance of which is 640 rods?
    10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt


    U.S. History (Time, 45 minutes)
    1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided
    2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus
    3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.
    4. Show the territorial growth of the United States
    5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas
    6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.
    7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton , Bell , Lincoln , Penn, and Howe?
    8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607, 1620, 1800, 1849, 1865.


    Orthography (Time, one hour)
    [Do we even know what this is??]
    1. What is meant by the following: alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication
    2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?
    3. What are the following, and give examples of each: trigraph, subvocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals
    4. Give four substitutes for caret 'U.' (HUH?)
    5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e.' Name two exceptions under each rule.
    6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.
    7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: bi, dis-mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, sup.
    8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.
    9. Use the following correctly in sentences: cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane , vain, vein, raze, raise, rays.
    10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks
    And by syllabication.


    Geography (Time, one hour)
    1 What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?
    2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas ?
    3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?
    4. Describe the mountains of North America
    5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia , Odessa , Denver , Manitoba , Hecla , Yukon , St. Helena, Juan Fernandez, Aspinwall and Orinoco
    6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S. Name all the republics of Europe and give the capital of each..
    8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?
    9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.
    10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give the inclination of the earth.

    Notice that the exam took FIVE HOURS to complete.

    Gives the saying 'he only had an 8th grade education' a whole new meaning, doesn't it?!


  2. #2
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    this is VERY interesting. thanks for sharing
    Nancy in western NY
    before you speak T.H.I.N.K.
    T is it True? H is it Helpful? I is it Inspiring? N is it Necessary? K is it Kind?


  3. #3
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    You ask whether we could pass the 8th grade exam ... heck could any of the University Grads today cut it?
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Sew many ideas ... just sew little time!!
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  4. #4
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    I am from Salina Kansas, and my grandfather took that test as a young boy and at the 8th grade level he was considered graduated. When I graduated after 12 years he tld m e I had the world by the tail.....

  5. #5
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    Oh my, I bet some people with much higher grade levels can't answer those questions.

  6. #6
    Super Member b.zang's Avatar
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    I think it's the language that's making people think the test is harder than it actually is. Most of those questions are still asked but in a way that requires the student to demonstrate knowledge rather than regurgitate memorized items. Of course, in BC we don't ask about US history although the kids do learn about Morse, Whitney and Fulton. The biggest difference is the 5-hour test block (we don't go over 3 hours for exams at grade 8).
    Barbara

    Samuel Johnson - Few things are impossible to diligence and skill. Great works are performed, not by strength but by perseverance.

  7. #7
    Super Member mountain deb's Avatar
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    Yikes, I am speechless here. Just glad I did not have that test.
    ABCDEFG

  8. #8
    Super Member Quiltaddict's Avatar
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    What I noticed right away was that students had to really know the subjects, no multiple choices for them to guess.

  9. #9
    Super Member Caswews's Avatar
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    so right ..many scholars today would be hard pressed to get it all right. Makes one thing how the school system has changed over the years.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member be a quilter's Avatar
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    WOW!!! Guess they actually TAUGHT kids back then, maybe we should take a new look at our schools today!

  11. #11
    Super Member Rose Marie's Avatar
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    Education has been steadily going downhill. I noticed it when raising my kids.
    What an eye opener that test is. WOW

  12. #12
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    While some of the questions are indeed standard knowledge still required today, quite a few of the responses did not require any thinking or problem solving just demonstrating acquired taught information. Howefver, I liked it very much that students were expected to know regional and national history. I am amazed at the length of the test if it was given all in one day. If it was administered over several days the time limits were actually generous.
    Base on my own classroom experiences, most students responded they prefer multiple choice tests, when actually given free response and multiple choice questions about the same subject, students did better with the latter. Thanks for sharing.

  13. #13
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    I went to one year of college and I can't even begin to answer these questions!

  14. #14
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    My dad was raised in Tennessee and only had an 8th grade education. My mother completed high school in Florida. My mom always said my dad had a better education that she did ... I guess she was probably right!


  15. #15
    Senior Member Meme2six's Avatar
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    My dad had "only" an eighth grade education and was one of the smartest people I every knew.

  16. #16
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    Very interesting indeed. Teaching was a bit different back then. My first hubby made it to the Eight grade and had to quit to support his family. He did fine though.

  17. #17
    Super Member chips88's Avatar
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    wow. very interesting. amen to look at the schools today.

  18. #18
    Super Member chuckbere15's Avatar
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    Wow! I have a high school deplomia, 12 grade, and two associates degrees, one in business and the second in computer science - software engineer and I think I might pass that by by the hair on my chin if the teacher was in a good mood and feeling generous.
    The Quilting Bear

  19. #19
    Super Member jeaninmaine's Avatar
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    I grew up in Halifax, Nova Scotia and we learned a ton of British history, they have a LOT of dates to remember and even back then my memory wasn't that great but at the time I did really well in English and Math. I'm in my 70's now and my use of the english language has deteriorated. At one time I could have done halfway decent on that test but not when I was in grade 8.
    Last edited by jeaninmaine; 07-19-2012 at 05:10 AM.

  20. #20
    Super Member Latrinka's Avatar
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    Good googa mooga! I'm feeling pretty dumb right now!
    If a woman's work is never done....why start?

  21. #21
    Super Member caspharm's Avatar
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    I would have liked taking that test when I still remembered what some of those questions meant. I doubt a lot students now could pass it, even at college level.

  22. #22
    Junior Member Raine's Avatar
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    QuiltE, you are so right on!
    Believe, it can be done!

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