Twelve Things l Wish They Taught at School
1 I attended junior and senior high school, public institutions in New York and New Jersey, just after the Second World War. It seems a long time ago. ①The facilities and the skills of the teachers were probably well above average for the United States at that time.Since then, I've learned a great deal. One of the most important things I've learned is how much there is to learn, ②and how much I don't yet know.③Sometimes I think how grateful I would be today if I had learned more back then about what really matters. In some respects that education was terribly narrow; the only thing I ever heard in school about Napoleon was that the United States made the Louisiana Purchase from him. ④(On a planet where some 95% of the inhabitants are not Americans, the only history that was thought worth teaching was American history. ) In spelling, grammar, the fundamenta ls of math, and other vital subjects, my teachers did a pretty good job. But there's so much else I wish they'd taught us.
①The facilities and skills of the teachers were probably well above average for the United States at that time.
above/ average：高于或低于一般的标准水平。well：adv 相当地，大大地
The facilities and skills of the teachers were perhaps much better than those in most schools in….
②…..how much I don't yet kn ow.
how much I don't know up till now.
③Sometimes I think how grateful I would be today if I had learned more back then about what really matters.
I would be grateful today if I had learned more at high school about things that are really important.
④On a planet where some 95% of the inhabitants are not Americans, the only history that was thought worth teaching was American history.
where some 95% of the inhabitants are not Americans：是定语从句，修饰a planet
that was thought worth teaching：也是定语从句，修饰the only history
The population of the US accounts for only about 5% of that of the world. But in my high school days school taught American history only because it was thought that the history of other countries was not important for Americans to learn.
2 ①Perhaps all the deficiencies have since been rectified. It seems to me there are many things (②often more a matter of attitude and perception than the simple memorization of facts) that the schools should teach — things that truly would be useful in later life, useful in making a stronger country and a better world, but useful also in making people happier. Human beings enjoy learning.③That's one of the few things that we do better than the other species on our planet. ④Every student should regularly experience the "Aha!" — when something you never understood, or something you never knew was a mystery, becomes clear.
3 So here's my list:
①Perhaps all the deficiencies have since been rectified.
Perhaps schools have overcome all the shortcomings and improved greatly since I left school.
② ...often more a matter of attitude and perception than the simple memorization of facts...
more + 名词+ than + 名词：与其说……不如说是……
Students should not merely be taught facts to memorize, but they should also be taught to cultivate their ability to judge what is happening around them and take the right attitude towards this.
③That's one of the few things that we do better than the other species on our planet.
In most things man's fellow creatures on earth are better, but in
learning man does better.
④Every student should regularly experience the "Aha!" ----when
something you never understood, or thing you never knew was a mystery, becomes clear.
Students should be constantly learning new things so that they can experience the joy of learning and of discovering things they didn't know or understand before.
Pick a difficult thing and learn it well.
4 The Greek philosopher Socrates said this was one of the greatest
of human joys,and it is. While you learn a little bit about many subjects,
make sure you learn a great deal about one or two. It hardly matters
what the subject is, as long as it deeply interests you, and you place it in
its broader human context. After you teach yourself one subject, you
become much more confident about your ability to teach yourself another. You gradually find you've acquired a key skill. The world is changing so rapidly that you must continue to teach yourself throughout your life. ①But don't get trapped by the first subject that interests you, or the first thing you find yourself good at. ②The world is full of wonder s, and some of them we don't discover until we're all grown up. Most of them, sadly, we never discover.
①But don't get trapped by the first subject that interest you, or the first
thing you find yourself good at.
But you shouldn't limit your study to anything that attracts you immediately or anything you first find yourself good at
②The world is full of wonder, and some of them we don't discover until