Thursday, October 19, 2006

1956 and all that.......

So what's so special about 1956?

Well for starters:

  • That was the year Elvis recorded his first hit, Heartbreak Hotel, followed quickly by Don't Be Cruel and Hound Dog.

  • It was the year Lennon and McCartney first met.

  • The '56 and '57 Chevys would forever vie for America's top nostalgic car spot.

  • In God We Trust became the US National who did 'we' trust before 1956?

A lot of interesting things happened in 1956 that can be checked out at the link; however, none of this has anything to do with the story......but:

  • George Miller, in the journal, Psychological Review, wrote of being persecuted by the number 7, of the limitations of processing information, and of the span of immediate memory.

  • It was mid-career of the primary reader series, Dick and Jane (and don't forget Spot), which was used in schools from the '30s to mid-'70s. "See Dick Run", "Run Dick Run".......
    (I considered Jack and Jill, but that was too political, they didn't have a dog called Spot, and "Let them eat cake!" didn't seem to have any relevance whatsoever.)

  • Ball-point pens were not permitted in primary school (That's funny because the much messier student's fountain pen was permitted). The ball-point pen became a status symbol: it meant you had moved on up to secondary school where the ball-point was to become the predominant writing tool to this day.

  • Highlighters had not yet been invented.

1956, Dick and Jane are simply symbols, representing an era when teaching and learning styles did not change very much. I probably could have chosen any year within a decade or more of it.


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