The Saber-Tooth Curriculum, Classic Edition

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Press:McGraw-Hill McGraw-Hill Education; 1 edition (March 19, 2004)
Publication Date:2004-05-01
Author Name:Harold R. W. Benjamin


The 65th-anniversary edition of an educational classic proves its relevance in examining today's educational quandaries McGraw-Hill first published The Saber- Tooth Curriculum in 1939, and it has remained a classic bestseller to this date. 
The book is just as relevant and applicable to the key questions in education today as it was when it was first published.
With tongue firmly in cheek, Peddiwell takes on the contradictions and confusion generated by conflicting philosophies of education, outlining the patterns and progression of education itself, from its origins at the dawn of time to its culmination in a ritualistic, deeply entrenched social institution with rigidly prescribed norms and procedures.
This fascinating exploration is developed within a fanciful framework of fictional lectures, given by Professor J.
Abner Peddiwell, doyen in the History of Education at Petaluma State College.
In a humorous fable, Peddiwell illustrates the progress of education and give valuable insights into how it could continue to develop in the decades to come.

About the Author

Abner Peddiwell was doyen of the History of Education at Petaluma State College.
Harold Benjamin was an academic, author, and publishing professional, and a prominent figure in 20th-century education.


Humor & Entertainment,Humor,Business & Professional,Education & Teaching,Schools & Teaching,Education Theory,History,Philosophy & Social Aspects

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Comment List (Total:17)

  •     This book should be required reading for anyone involved in education--particularly administrators and officials. No "big" words or educational jargon here, just a simple fairy tale which points out all the basic flaws in educational systems.
  •     True the and true now...we are not all susceptible to the same teaching and learning methods...we humans have a "grain" which if the teaching considers, will allow more effective learning...the reason "Allie (the alligator)" cannot do well climbing trees is because she is an alligator--not because she needs to better apply herself. The students and teachers are as capable as they've ever been...we just need to get the Unions and Administrators back to their necessary levels.
  •     An excellent book, amazing that it has been written so Long ago. Everything worked out nicely (shipping).
  •     This is a must read for those of us who struggle to deal with the frustrations of constant education reform dictated by administrators and executives who have never worked on the field. It makes us take a look at why we continue to do what we do!
  •     Excellent source of ideas for reform and counter reform of educational philosophy and practice.
  •     Life is far too short to waste time reading this mind-numbing drivel. Consider instead a root canal--or perhaps in-grown toenail removal.
  •     Amazing book! A critical look at education that needs to be heard. It's a bit snarky and sarcastic in places, but it adds to the experience.
  •     This is a wonderful expose on some of the stupid reasons for our curriculum choices. Every educator should read it.
  •     Very old language. Hard to keep up to topics and sarcasm, but very good points which requires mind work to understand.
  •     This is a very funny book, which could even be enjoyed by somebody without a specific interest in education or curriculum. It purports to be based on a series of one-on-one lectures by Professor Abner Peddiwell, who has been loosened up by tequila. It is really by Harold Benjamin, who writes a foreword. The point of the book is, should education be of time-honored subjects, or should it have relevance to the here and now? It is told as a story of Paleolithic life, in which the subjects in school are Saber-tooth Tiger Scaring, Horse-clubbing, and Catching Fish with the Bare Hands. The controversy arrives many years later, when there are no saber-tooth tigers, or horses, or is it possible to catch fish with the bare hands anymore. However, these same subjects are still taught in the school for philosophical reasons. I'm sure you can guess where this is going, and I don't want to spoil it for you. The illustrations are appropriate for the text. You will like this, regardless of your educational philosophy.
  •     I was teacher of the year in both high school and college. Then I was drafted pretty early into our US Military.
  •     Interesting read
  •     Although written in the 1940s, this book is extremely relevant today. There are those that want to make the Common Core standards political. This book puts them—and any other standards document—into perspective by using the allegory of cavemen who want to teach the saber-toothed curriculum long after they become extinct.A real classic.
  •     When I found this book on my list of items to read for a graduate course, I did not believe the reviews that stated a 70 year old book could still provide enlightenment on todays' issues. Coming into the education field with a background in business, I found myself not only laughing throughout parts of the book but agreeing with the author. This book brought education and business together for me.The author is correct, today we spend too much time focusing on what worked yesterday and not wanting to change. As a result, we make excuses on why what was still could be the answer. We are all realizing that yesterday's education is no longer effective for tomorrow's students. This book is one every stakeholder should read before voting on the latest "get fixed-quick" plans for education are initiated. While this book does not offer any suggestions on how to fix the system, it does offer an interesting viewpoint on how everything went so wrong. The question thus becomes who can come up with an answer to the questions this book poses.
  •     As satire goes, no one could shine a light on the backward traditions of educational perennialists. Just as relevant today as it was all those decades ago.
  •     This book was required for one of my classes and i was glad because the book was very informative and beneficial. it will be very useful.
  •     A very funny view of learning during pre-historic times.

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