English

Identify the main ideas of the indicated paragraphs of this article. (Paragraphs with the asterisks are indicated.)

My choices are in parentheses.

Our pitiful knowledge of geography has been well documented for the last decade. Among the most notable studies was the 2006 Roper study sponsored by the National Geographic Society, a copy of which is linked here. I will spare a detailed analysis, but some of the highlights include that “most young adults between the ages of 18 and 24 demonstrate a limited understanding of the world beyond their country’s borders, and they place insufficient importance on the basic geographic skills that might enhance their knowledge.”

*(What is even more disturbing–even as a three-year old study–is the declining attitude towards geography.) 21% of respondents said that knowing where countries were in the world is “not too important.” 38% of respondents said the same about learning another language. As our ability to understand the world grows more and more, we want to know less about it. The results are scary.

*(One need not look further than my own students to see the results of such thinking.) Many of my fifth graders, even as late as December, still thought the Bronx was a country. Many didn’t even know how many states comprised the United States, where our capital is located, or even its name. One kid even alleged that Puerto Rico was a borough of New York City–though considering the demographic, he may be on to something.

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  1. I agree.

  2. Thanks! There's another one too:

    *(Geography is essential to our education.) Not just knowing how to read a map, but at least a basic understanding of where countries, states and continents are located on a map. Yet the study of our world has many other implications as well:

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  3. Right.

  4. *Yet they all knew where the Chuck-E-Cheese is located. Most have an encyclopedic knowledge of the shops in Co-Op City, or the amusement possibilities of New Rochelle (dubbed “New Roc City”). They also have exact bearings on where to find the nearest McDonald’s, Burger King and KFC, which would also become their future employers, if they’re not careful.

    *Students should have access to as much geography as humanly possible. The more kids understand the world, the more curious they get about how the world works–especially its problems. The geography problem, in many ways, is the most urgent problem, as it colors almost every other aspect of social studies. Extending knowledge of world geography will help our students make a positive mark on that same world later in life.

    I don't get the first one, and I'm confused if it is the first or last sentence in the second paragraph.

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  5. Last sentence

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