The Cosby Show

Season 6 Episode 25

Live and Learn

0
Aired Thursday 8:00 PM Apr 26, 1990 on NBC
6.9
out of 10
User Rating
20 votes
1

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Episode Summary

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Denise becomes discouraged after learning that Medgar Evers College will only accept transfer credit for one of the courses she took at Hillman (archery) because it is the only class in which she received at least a C. When she goes to pick up Olivia at preschool, she is impressed by the teaching methods of "Uncle" Wilton, who uses rap to teach the multiplication tables. She decides that she can reach the children through alternative methods, and does not need to return to college. She ignores the advice of both her teacher friend Rebecca and Clair and decides to approach Wilton about becoming his assistant. She is crushed when Wilton tells her that she needs a master's degree, as he also employs traditional teaching methods. Rebecca convinces her that she still has a lot to learn about communicating with children. Cliff and Clair expect Denise to find yet another calling, but she surprises them by enrolling in college as a freshman.moreless

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Denise Gets A Reality Check

    5.0
    This isn't a great standout episode but the sage advice Rebecca gives Denise about the profession is SO TRUE. Teaching is more than just glorified babysitting with clever production techniques. Olivia's preschool teacher who thinks outside the box and has the resources to create innovative lesson plans really does make teaching look like the best job in the world!

    I was once like Denise, except I actually HAD the bachelor's degree in elementary education and was ready to mold young minds and influence lives. What I wasn't prepared for was having to compete with thousands of other teachers for a handful of openings. Being a substitute teacher was very rewarding at times but I finally crashed and burned. I feel sorry for Denise already. "Don't do it!" Rebecca"s demonstration of "teaching in the real world" was absolutely spot on. I met plenty of balky children who claimed stupidity just to get out of doing an assignment and parents complaining because their child wasn't given special treatment. Anyone who is considering a future career in teaching needs to watch this episode.moreless
Lisa Bonet

Lisa Bonet

Denise Huxtable Kendall

Bill Cosby

Bill Cosby

Dr. Heathcliff "Cliff" Huxtable

Keshia Knight Pulliam

Keshia Knight Pulliam

Rudy Huxtable

Phylicia Rashad

Phylicia Rashad

Clair Huxtable

Raven-Symone

Raven-Symone

Olivia Kendall

Suzzanne Douglass

Suzzanne Douglass

Rebecca Shorter

Guest Star

Max Roach

Max Roach

Dr. Gordon Darton

Guest Star

Wilton Banks

Wilton Banks

Uncle Wilton

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (5)

    • Goof: When Denise is talking to Clair about Olivia's teacher, she calls him Uncle Wilkin instead of Uncle Wilton.

    • When Denise is sitting at the drums trying to get her "pupil" Rebecca to rap with her, she says, "3 times 3 is 3."

    • In this episode, Olivia called Denise "Mommy" for the only time in the series. It may have been a mistake by Raven-Symone that wasn't caught.

    • Denise complains that only one of her courses at Hillman will be accepted for transfer because it has a grade above C, and Clair remarks that it must be in Archery. Whatever happened to the Modern Cinema class Denise was getting an A in from Denise Gets a D?

    • Denise gripes that she went to college for three semesters and it did no good. Her math skills really fail her here. If you follow the timeline for A Different World, the first season profiled her sophomore year in college, which she completed in the last episodes that dealt with her taking finals. If she completed two years of college, that's four semesters, not three.

  • QUOTES (2)

    • (Discussing using rap for teaching) Denise: Like English, History...I wrote one for history. (Drumming on the kitchen table) Colombus sailed the ocean blue in fourteen hundred and ninety-two. When he got to the shore, he said, "Let's dock" on the place he called Plymouth Rock.
      Rebecca: Denise, Colombus sailed to the Carribean in 1492, the Pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock in 1620.
      Denise: Oh.

    • (After Denise accuses Clair of "pouring cold water" on all of Denise's ideas)
      Clair (to herself): "Maybe when we were making the decision to have *that* child, somebody should have poured some cold water on Cliff!"

      (After "Uncle Wilton" tells what Denise needs for a teacher's aid job)
      Denise: "Gosh, you know, all I want to do is help children and no one will let me!"
      Rebecca: "Denise, why are you so hardheaded? The man didn't say that; he said you have to get an education to be of help here."
      Denise: "Well, I am ready now if Uncle Wilton would work with me!"
      Rebecca: "Uncle Wilton already has enough children to work with; he doesn't need one as old as you! Denise, why don't you want to go to college? Why are you so afraid to go to college?!"
      Denise: "Because! I am ready now!"
      Rebecca: "You know, a lot of people think they can just walk in off the street and do something because it looks easy! But they don't realize you have to work hard to make something look easy."

  • NOTES (0)

  • ALLUSIONS (1)

    • Rebecca: "Denise, I am more than grateful to Sesame Street and Mr. Rogers and all the television shows that use music and animation and clever production techniques to dazzle children into learning, but it won't work for me; I don't sing and dance!"
      Matt Robinson, the writer for this episode, was the original actor who appeared as Gordon on Sesame Street for the show's first three seasons (1969-72).

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