Don’t think that walking the streets of Paris is all just for fun. No. This is a business trip. Today I visited a famous learning-related site. East of the Louvre pyramid is a lovely little arch Napoleon had built to celebrate the victories of his Grande Armee.
The Kaiser, infuriated, vowed that this would never happen again. He created the Normal Schule to teach the obedience for which the Prussians became famous. They followed orders so well that the Kaiser enjoyed great success hiring them out as mercenaries. Needless to say, the military and social elite were spared these common schools.
An American school board official from Boston, Horace Mann, visited Prussia and concluded that this was just what America needed. America wasn’t fighting Napoleon; rather, it was building railroads and factories which required a discipline of their own.
Anyway, today’s pedagogical parable is that Napoleon is one of the root causes of American’s dumbed-down schools.
With more work to do today, I continued walking, through the garden of the Tuileries, where I stopped for a snack. (These folks took the next table.)
From the Folies, it’s only three or four blocks to the office of Didaxis, the company I’m working with on prospering in multicultural environments. It’s almost 11:00 pm here but I am tethered to our fast Internet connection.
30 Poppy Lane
Berkeley, California 94708
1.510.528.3105 (office & cell)
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