Wednesday, March 7, 2012

When I was your age...Mailey and Alena!

Kindergarten Cousins...
Two sweet little girls in their Easter finery...Alena on the left, and Mailey on the right.   Kindergarten!  The word means "garden of children" in German.  And there couldn't be two prettier flowers.  I couldn't wait to turn five and go to school with the older kids on my street.  You are just starting out on an exciting adventure in the Great Big World.  There is so much to see and so much to learn.  What was kindergarten like when I was your age?  Let's find out.


I couldn't find my kindergarten pictures, but I remember wearing a little red cardigan sweater on picture day.  The picture on the left was taken when I was five years old.  The little boy is my brother Mike, and the little girl is Patti.

The Old Alpine School and Gymnasium

This was my school in Alpine, Utah.  Alpine was a very small town when I was a little girl...maybe 500 or so people.  But it was nestled against the mountains and was very pretty with lots of little farms and orchards. My daddy also went to this school.  He lived in Fort Canyon and when he started kindergarten he rode a horse to school!  No school bus for little Tad!

A Kindergarten Day...

The Pledge of Allegience

My teacher was Miss Greenwood.  She also taught first grade.  Our school had only four classrooms so they split the younger kids. Kindergarten came in the morning and first grade in the afternoon.  When the bell rang, we lined up in front of the flag pole and followed our teacher inside.  The first thing we did was say the prayer and recite the Pledge of Allegience.  Even then we were taught to respect our flag.

We learned to count and do our ABCs.  There wasn't any pre-school then, so most of us learned these things in kindergarten.  See the funny wooden shoe?  That was how we learned to tie our shoelaces.  Kindergarten was much simpler then.  After our lesson we played with toys...the playhouse in the corner was the most popular thing for both the girls and the boys.  After the toys were put away...

...we all gathered around our teacher sitting in a circle on the floor while she read us a story.  My favorite was Peter Pan.  At some point we could hear the clank of bottles.  One of the lunch ladies would come in bringing the milk for snack time.

Nice cold bottles of milk!

In those days, school milk came in little bottles with a straw.  I have always loved school, I could never seem to get enough of it...sometimes I would drink 3 containers with my lunch.  Our snack was usually graham crackers.  After snack time came...

...Nap Time!

We spread out our mats and lay down for a little rest.  This was the hardest part of the day for me.  I was a wiggly worm!  I don't know how long we were supposed to lay there, but it seemed like hours!  I just couldn't hold still that long.  Miss Greenwood would watch for the least wiggly child...and that child would be chosen to be the "Wake-up Fairy."  The wake-up fairy was given a magic wand and he or she would touch each child on the head with the wand and say "wake-up."  I dearly wanted to be the wake-up fairy...but since I was so wiggly I only got to do it once!


Out in the school yard we had a merry-go-round.  We held on tight and spun around and around until we were dizzy!  Our old school yard was paved in asphalt which was crumbly and full of gravel.  If I ever took a tumble off the merry-go-round I would spend some time in the school nurse's office having gravel picked out of my scraped knees.  Another fun...but dangerous...playground item was...

..."Tricky Bars"

Also known as a Jungle Gym...we spent many recesses hanging upside down on the highest bars.  We wore dresses to school in those we had to hold onto our skirts with one hand sure to wear clean underwear!  I had a pair of...
...culottes that I wore on "Tricky Bars" days.  No one was going to sing "I see London, I see France..." when I hung upside down.   There were swings....of course...and a weedy old tennis court, used mostly for rollerskating.  There was no padding under played at your own risk.

This was Kindergarten 1960...
When school was over, I would walk home with my friends or just dawdle along by myself.  Sometimes I would stop by Grandma Zetta's house to see if she had any cookies.  Sometimes she did, but most of the time she would shoo me out the door and tell me to "get on home!"  I was never in any hurry to "get on home."  There were too many things to explore on the way!  I hope you are having fun in your kindergarten classes.  I am so proud of my two smart girls...Alena and Mailey!

Grandma Shirley

My Favorite Little Golden Book
I learned to read from this book!


LBP said...

Such a sweet post! The area where I lived didn't even have a kindergarten! We went straight to first grade at age 6!



LBP said...

Such a sweet post! The area where I lived didn't even have a kindergarten! We went straight to first grade at age 6!



Sarah said...

Once again, I've loved reading about the past through your post. These stories remind me of many of my mom's stories about her early school days. I think she got gravel in her knees too because at her elementary school I think they played on blacktop!

Betsy said...

Hi Shirley,

I have so much fun reading your posts and sharing in the memories, even though they were in different places. We called them monkey bars and I was the biggest monkey! I was always hanging from something, preferably upside-down. We also wore dresses in those days, but on gym days or days when I thought I'd be "hanging around" we wore shorts under them. I remember wearing culottes when I was a little older--what a great invention! Our milk crates were left out in the hallway by the custodian, and we had little cartons instead of bottles. I still remember the smell. And it was graham crackers every day. It's so much fun to relive these memories. Sometime I think my memory isn't very good, but your posts are reminding me of things I haven't thought of in a long time.


Little Susie Home Maker said...

You kindergarten memories are so lovely the way you are telling them to your grand daughters. I remember many things about my kindergarten days, what a great way to hold on to the memories!
I think my favorite thing about my kindergarten class was my teacher used a huge abacus to teach us to count past 100!