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Education in Great Expectations
Transcript of Education in Great Expectations
A dame school consisted of a woman who
would be in charge of a large group of children.
This lady would have more experience in taking
care of the children rather than teaching them.
Most of the children who attended these schools were poor. Their parents would simply drop them of at the dame's house and pay the dame a couple of pennies a week, so the dame could take care of the children and teach them the alphabet or how to sew.
Education in Great Expectations
From Within Pip's World
“Mr. Wopsle's great-aunt kept an evening school in the village; that is to say, she was a ridiculous old woman of limited means and unlimited infirmity, who used to go to sleep from six to seven every evening, in the society of youth who paid twopence per week each, for the improving opportunity of seeing her do it.” (chapter 7)
What This Means....
This quote demonstrates that class really determined whether a person got a good education or not. The main character of Great Expectations, Pip, was enrolled in a school where even though money was being paid for his education; it lacked quality and clearly a proactive teacher.
The Reality: Dame Schools
The Reality: What it was like in the 19th century
At the beginning of the century very few children went to school. A majority of them came from poor families and so work was prioritized over school. Girls also got very little education since they did not go to school during the beginning of this era. Instead, most schools were set up for boys.
The Reality: Ragged Schools
Ragged Schools were schools for poor
children, they would often take place in
one room and consisted of older children teaching the younger ones. As of 1883
factory owners were supposed to provide
at least 2 hours a day for children to be
able to learn, but many children were not granted this. Most of the times, they
didn't even get lessons.
The Effects of a Victorian-era Education
On a Young Pip
“With an alphabet on the hearth at my feet for reference, I contrived in an hour or two to print and smear this epistle:
"MI DEER JO i OPE U R KR WITE WELL i OPE i SHAL SON B HABELL 4 2 TEEDGE U JO AN THEN WE SHORL B SO GLODD AN WEN i M PRENGTD 2 U JO WOT LARX AN BLEVE ME INF XN PIP."
Dickens did indeed accurately portray education in Victorian England through his novel,
Great Expectations. Precisely
through showing Pip's schooling, and how he was on the unfair side of the spectrum. It was only the rich who got a quality education, while the poor didn't. Instead, the money the poorer parents paid was exploited and the children suffered for it.
Works Cited Page
"BBC Primary History-Victorian Britain: Children at school." BBC. BBC. Web. 12 Nov 2013. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/primaryhistory/victorian_britain/children_at_school/>.
Dickens, Charles. Great Expectations. United Kingdom: Everyman's Library, 1907. Print.
Smith, Lauren. “Hard knocks in Great Expectations.” Victorian Web. N.p 09 2010. Web. 13 Nov 2012
Victorian Britain: Children at school. N.d. Photograph. BBC, England. Web. 12 Nov 2013. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/primaryhistory/victorian_britain/children_at_school/ >.
By Ardhys De Leon and Nicole Valencia