Sunday, June 10, 2007

Field Trip to a One-Room Schoolhouse

Feast of Blessed Edward Joannes Maria Poppe

The end of May, the local Catholic homeschoolers got together for a wonderful field trip (hat tip goes to Jodi – Thank you!) It was almost an hour drive, but well worth it! We went to a one-room schoolhouse – Mt. Gilead School in Kearny, MO.

This is what the Clay county government site has to say about it:

Mt. Gilead School, Kearney, Missouri, operated for over 100 years until it closed its doors in 1946. The original school was a log structure built in 1835. The present two-story schoolhouse, built in 1879, replaced the log structure.

Mt. Gilead School had two teachers until the 1920s. The younger children were taught upstairs, while older students made use of a classroom on the first floor. Historians believe that Mt. Gilead was the only school west of the Mississippi River to continuously hold classes during the Civil War. Accounts of life at the school suggest that teachers would dismiss classes to watch marching soldiers. Mt. Gilead functioned as an academy for several years after 1860, offering courses in Latin, Greek, and music. Classes continued until 1946 when Mt. Gilead was consolidated with the Kearney School District. Clay County acquired the historic site in the mid 1980s and restored the school in 1998.This popular field trip requires advance reservations. For information on fees or to schedule a field trip, contact Clay County Historic Sites at (816) 628-6065.
Here is another site that mentions the school, and with a picture.

The schoolhouse is as authentic as it can be, and still meet modern day health & safety codes. The teacher dresses in period garb. The children are encouraged to come authentic too – from garb, to their lunches wrapped in wax paper & carried in a tin bucket. The school was run as if it was the late 1800s. When a student answered a question, they had to stand next to his/her desk. The boys & girls were seated separately. There was even a dunce cap! The parents sat in the back of the room – we were called the “school board”.

The teacher incorporated the history of the time period into the lessons for the day. The day started with the clang of the school bell.

She asked them how they got to school (and “by car” was not an acceptable answer as there were no cars then.)

She recited a poem while one of the students played puppet master.
They had music class in the church next door – and one of the dads was recruited to “direct” the band. (By the way, she can play a “mean” flute!)

After lunch they played some old-fashioned games. Here King Peter & Queen Lucy are in a race to see who can roll barrel hoops the fastest.

There was even a scavenger hunt – the children looked for symbols on the gravestones in the historical graveyard.

At the end of the day, they had a spelling bee. King Peter won for the boys. “No big deal! He was the oldest one there.” – some may say. But spelling is his hardest subject, and one he struggles with a lot! The joy on his face was priceless! One I will always remember. I had tears in my eyes (and I do every time I think of it, even now.) His prize was an old-fashioned Quill pen. He does not have as many opportunities for success as his sister does, so this was a HUGE deal!

At the end of the day, everyone posed for pictures.

Thank you Miss Green for a WONDERFUL day!!!

1 comment:

Donna said...

I love these kind of places - my girls did something a couple of years ago here: