Going Her Own Way
When she was twelve, Maria made her first important decision about the course of her life. She decided that she wanted to continue her education, Most girls from middle-class families chose to stay home after primary school，though some attended private Catholic "finishing" schools. There they learned a little about music，art，needlework，and how to make polite conversation. This was not the sort of education that interested Maria —or her mother. By this time，she had begun to take her studies more seriously. She read constantly and brought her books everywhere. One time she even brought her math book to the theater and tried to study in the dark.
Maria knew that she wanted to go on learning in a serious way. That meant attending the public high school，something that very few girls did. In Italy at the time，there were two types of high schools: the "classical" schools and the "technical" schools. In the classical schools，the students followed a very traditional program of studies，with courses in Latin and Greek language and literature，and Italian literature and history1. The few girls who continued studying after primary school usually chose these schools.
Maria，however，wanted to attend a technical school. The technical schools were more modem than the classical schools and they offered courses in modern languages，mathematics，science，and accounting2.Most people — including Maria's father — believed that girls would never be able to understand these subjects. Furthermore，they did not think it was proper for girls to study them.
Maria did not care if it was proper or not. Math and science were the subjects that interested her most. But before she could sign up for the technical school，she had to win her father' sapproval. She finally did，with her mother's help，though for many years after，there was tension in the family. Maria's father continued to oppose her plans，while her mother helped her.
In 1883，at age thirteen，Maria entered the "Regia Scuola Tecnica Michelangelo Buonarroti" in Rome. Her experience at this school is difficult for us to imagine. Though the courses included modern subjects，the teaching methods were very traditional. Learning consisted of memorizing long lists of facts and repeating them back to the teacher. Students were not supposed to ask questions or think for themselves in any way. Teachers were very demanding，discipline in the classroom was strict，and punishment was severe for those who failed to achieve or were disobedient.
discipline /'disiplin/ n. 纪律，学科，训练，惩罚 punishment n. 惩罚，严厉对待，虐待
1. In the classical schools，the students followed a very traditional program of studies，with courses in Latin and Greek language and literature，and Italian literature and history. 在传统学校中，学生们都依照一种非常传统的教学方式学习，包含拉丁语、希腊语与文学课，还有意大利文学与历史。
2. The technical schools were more modem than the classical schools and they offered courses in modern languages，mathematics，science，and accounting. 技术学校比传统学校要现代得多， 他们提供的课程有现代语言、数学、自然科学，以及会计学。
1. Maria wanted to attend________.
A) private “finishing” school
B) school with Latin and Greek
C) technical high school
D)school for art and music
2. In those days, most Italian girls________.
A) went to classical schools
B) went to “finishing” schools
C) did not go to high school
D) went to technical schools
3. You can infer from this passage that________.
A) girls usually attended private primary schools
B) only boys usually attended technical schools
C) girls did not like going to school
D) only girls attended classical schools
4. Maria’s father probably________.
A) had very modern views about women
B) had very traditional views about women
C) had no opinion about women
D) thought women could not learn Latin
5. High school teachers in Italy In those days were________.
A) very modern
B) very intelligent
C) quite scientific
D) quite strict
1. C 本题的问题是：Maria想去个怎样的学校?由文中第三段可明确得出结论。“Maria, however, wanted to attend a technical school .” A, B, D项均有明显错误。
2. C 本题的问题是：在当时的意大利大多数女孩的选择是什么?由文中的第一段可知“Most girls from middle–class families chose to stay home after primary school ,”所以本题的正确答案为C。
3. B 本题为推理题，问题是：从全文可以得出什么样的结论?A选项未提及。C选项错误，原文只说大多数女孩子都选择呆在家里，并未说她们都不喜欢读书。D选项错误，原文只说就算是上学的话大多数女孩子都选择传统学校，而并非只有女孩子可以去。所以正确答案为B。
4. B 本题问的是：Maria的父亲对女性的态度是什么?由文中第三段倒数第二句“Most people—including Maria’s father —believed in the girls would never be able to understand these subjects.”可以得出答案，父亲和大多数人一样都持传统观念。
5. D 本题的问题是：当时的意大利高中教师是怎样的?从文中最后一段可以得出结论“Teachers were very demanding, discipline in the classroom was strict, and punishment was severe for those who failed to achieve or were disobedient,”故正确答案为D。