Letter: An Awe-Inspiring Teacher

To the Editor:

As a sophomore in Windsor High School in 1962, I received a scholarship for a summer program at Mount Hermon School, the “elitist” school to which Philip Glouchevitch refers in his April 11 letter (“The Grammar Was Proper, But…”). My teacher for expository writing there was none other than Thomas Donovan, the English instructor whom Willem Lange remembers well. It was the first time that T.D. had taught girls. He was strict and clear and had standards. He would have had them, I suspect, wherever he taught. He questioned the thinking and structure of each essay and took time discussing what I wrote every day. I’m no doubt becoming self-indulgent here, but forgive me, sir, I believe that his approach, though tough and demanding, represents the direction schools need to take. Thank you, Willem Lange, for reminding me of that awe-inspiring teacher, as well as others who encourage careful writing.

Helen Taylor Davidson



Letter: The Grammar Was Proper, But ...

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

To the Editor: I don’t necessarily mind Willem Lange’s lament that proper grammar and usage are in decline, however tedious this refrain may be. But could he at least spare us the self-indulgent, elitist drivel about the demanding English teacher at his boarding school back in the day? Philip Glouchevitch Hanover …

Willem Lange: A Painful Apprenticeship in Mastering a Powerful Instrument

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

East Montpelier Woolley, Scott and Tressler. The names were synonymous with pain, oppression and tyranny. They appeared on the cover of the handbook of English that we were required to obtain for our studies at Mount Hermon School. It would have done no good to point out to our teachers that Edwin Woolley was a bit superannuated — he had …