NCERT Class 9 English Solutions: Chapter 1 The Fun They Had-Part 3
Answer each of these questions in two or three paragraphs (100-150 words)
Q. What are the main features of the mechanical teachers and the schoolrooms that Margie and Tommy have in the story?
A. Margie and Tommy had mechanical teachers. They had large black screens on which all the lessons were shown and questions were asked. They had a slot in which students had to put their homework and test papers. They had to write their answers in punch code and the mechanical teacher calculated the marks immediately.
Their schools were in their respective homes. They did not have any classmates. They learnt geography, history, and arithmetic. They had regular days and hours for school. Margie’s school was right next to her bedroom. The mechanical teacher always turned on at the same time every day except Saturdays and Sundays. She was ok with this because her mother said that little girls learned better, when they learned at regular hours.
Q. Why did Margie hate school? Why did she think the old kind of school in the story? Give reasons for your answer.
A. Margie hated school because it was not fun. She was doing badly in the geography tests that her mechanical teacher gave her. When her mother sent for the County Inspector, she hoped that the inspector would take the mechanical teacher away. She was disappointed when the County Inspector manages to assemble all the parts of the mechanical teacher. She hated inserting the homework and test papers in the slot on the mechanical teacher. She did not like the fact that she had to write her answers in punch code. She thought that the old kind of school must have been fun- she imagined all the kids from the entire neighborhood coming together, laughing, and shouting in the schoolyard. She imagined that they would sit together in the classroom and go home together at the end of the day. They would learnt the same things and could help one another with the homework and talk about it. In addition, the teachers were people. All these aspects made her believe that the old kind of school must have been fun.
Q. Do you agree with Margie that schools today are more fun than the school in the story? Give reasons for your answer.
A. Yes, schools today are more fun than the school in the story. In the story, there is no interaction between students, which limits learning. There is a lot more learning in school then studies- interacting with friends & teachers, playing, and helping each other. Just studying and answering questions is a very boring idea. It would be a drag to do the homework mechanically without interaction and that too in punch code. Moreover, children develop a better understanding about each other and of their surroundings when they go to a school and interact with each other. It is a healthier way of learning.
Listening to teachers explaining lessons is always more interesting than reading the entire lesson on a mechanical computer. In addition, if any student faces any problem with the subject or in homework, he can discuss it with the teacher and other kids. The excitement of waiting to know the marks scored in exams is greater when one is sitting in a classroom with other students. It does not have the same effect when the marks are calculated immediately after a test. Therefore, schools today are more fun than the school in the story as they are more interactive. They promote a healthy environment for the students to study, learn, and have fun.