Europe at School: A Study of Primary and Secondary Schools in France, West Germany, Italy, Portugal & Spain (Routledge Library Editions: Comparative Education)

Originally published in 1977. This is a lively account of the day-to-day running of European schools based in five countries – France, West Germany, Italy, Spain and Portugal. It outlines the organisation of education in these countries, and examines aspects of curriculum, teaching methods, examinations, attitudes of teachers and pupils, buildings, equipment, out-of-school activities, pastoral care, discipline and rules and depicts what it is like to be a pupil or teacher in a European school. The schools discussed are mainly primary and lower secondary grades – the basic compulsory education of each country. Details of working hours, programmes and curricula which are, notably, often government controlled, are given in Appendices. But the author stresses that his aim throughout has been to show how individual schools work and adopt these rules to their own situation. He discusses the relative advantages and drawbacks of different educational systems, and draws his own conclusions about the favourable impressions he gained from many schools and the Awful Warning he saw in a few. This survey throws as much light on schools at home as on those in Europe and suggests that we have a good deal to learn from our neighbours.

Community Review

  • Are you a returning learner? Has it been years since you were in school? Do you fear going into a class with kids half your age? It is okay. There are many in the same boat. Read this article to learn more about others like you. You will understand that you can do it, too.Pack your enough of your essential toiletries when you go off to college. These are very important and will run out quickly with all of the times that you will be using them. Buying toiletries in bulk saves you time and money.Be realistic when it comes to your work and school loads. If you aren’t a night person, avoid scheduling night classes. Learn your body’s natural rhythm and schedule around it.If you recently entered college, one of the first things that you should do is purchase your books from the bookstore. This will help you to reduce the stresses that you will face as the year begins, as you should always come prepared with the right materials and texts for school.Help created a study group or get a study buddy for classes and subjects that you may need more help with. Everyone has different learning styles, and you may learn and retain more while working and discussing with your study partner and group, instead of from the fast-paced lecture form your professor.Develop good study habits while in high school. College professors normally expect that students in their classes know the proper way to study for exams, write term papers and how to research information. By learning this while in high school you can ensure success in college. If you do not have good study habits, ask for help.When you are planning your schedule, do your best to refrain from scheduling classes that are too early in the morning or too late at night. These classes can be very difficult, as you will often miss these classes due to the time. Schedule classes back to back in the middle of the day.If possible try to live for your first year in campus housing. By taking advantage of room and board you can give yourself more of a chance to focus on getting accustomed to the campus and community. Then in following years you will have a better idea of where you might prefer to live on your own.You must study everyday to be successful. Distractions will be everywhere, but you should make studying a priority. Promise yourself that you will study each and every day. Make yourself do it even when you don’t feel like it. It will help you cement the behavior into a habit.If you are having difficulty in college, begin a study group. A study group will offer many choices, including one on one time and group time. If you do not want to begin your own study group, there are many study groups available on most colleges. To find one, ask your classmates and professors.Get to know the people in the financial aid office. If you make friends with them, they will appear more friendly to you. Then, when you have questions, they can assist you more easily. While they are all professionals, it never hurts to grease the social wheels when it comes to your financial needs.Make friends with at least two people in each class. It may make you feel strange to talk to a person you don’t know, but in the end it’s totally worth it. You’ll be able to get caught up more easily after any absences if you can confer with a couple of classmates. Also, you can get together with them for study sessions.When studying for exams, try setting goals. Like anything else that has time-restraints, setting goals can keep you focused. In this case, your main goal would be to pass the exam. To accomplish that, try listing small goals of what you want to accomplish at certain times in order to be ready in time for the test.If your campus library offers a workshop on research skills, sign up for it. Developing your skills in researching for information will make your life easier as you tackle difficult assignments in your courses. The information that you find is of better quality that what you can find by just searching through a search engine on the web.Take advantages of the different services your college provides. Meeting with your academic counselor can help you to be successful in your college courses. Most colleges have career placement counselors who will help you to find a job once you finish college, or internships you might need for credits.Now that you have read this, you should know that a degree is attainable. It does take hard work and discipline. But, if you have taken time off from school for kids, you already have that. You deserve to treat yourself to the education you have always dreamed of having.

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