Recently some families from our home school group found an amazing field trip. A travel back in time to the 1800's. November 3, 1896 to be exact. We attended school for a day in a one room schoolhouse complete with a schoolmaster and lessons from the 1800's. Our children from my 3 year old up to our high schoolers all sat for lessons in reading, writing, and ciphering (or arithmetic as I know it). They used slates, old chalk and proper manners including curtseying and the use of "sir" after every answer given. They read from McGuffey readers and even used inkwells and old fashioned pens.
The children were given a "recess" in which they were introduced to old fashioned games of the imaginative sort. There was the game "graces", pick up sticks, hopscotch, jump rope, stilts, and the hoop and stick. The amazing thing was watching all of the children who were completely "unplugged" from all of their devices, phones, tablets, etc. They were having a ball!
The day lasted for about 3 hours and the children were shown how things were done back in times past. They were even educated on the wood burning stoves that kept the schoolhouses warm. I found myself revisiting the question I often hear when people find out that I homeschool..."How do you teach all different grades at once?" I am thankful I only have 4 grades and 4 students to teach, teachers back then had many more than I.
I believe much about what the schoolmaster said, it was respect and discipline and it was a time when children understood that people had authority over them and they were to obey, if not then after getting into trouble in school, they would likely get into trouble again at home with their parents. Learning was a privilege and was considered as such, I wish it were more like that now. In fact, I will even go so far as to say that aside from the lack of indoor plumbing and electricity I would all but jump back in time to any simpler day.
An 18th century Schoolday
11/10/2015 03:06:48 pm
That's just stinking awesome!!! What a treat for those kids!!! When I was a kid in the fifth grade....the year before your mom came to Fayetteville, we went to school in three separate buildings and they each had a coal burning pot belly stove in each room, us boys had to keep the fire going in the winter. The restrooms were about twenty yards away from the three little buildings....and they were cold!! I loved it and have never forgotten it. When you went into the sixth grade you went "big time" to the "real" school. And yes, if I acted up at school my parents knew about it before I got home and yes I got double punishment. My mother was a beautician and she knew everything that happened. I got away with nothing. One teacher even told me she felt a bit sorry for me. Your kids are blessed to have such fine parents.
11/10/2015 05:36:36 pm
Thanks so much for sharing! I love hearing my grandmother's stories of her days at school too.
Leave a Reply.
Wife to a wonderful husband, Daughter of the King, Mother of 6 (one with an xtra chromosome), and an incidental farm girl.