Tuesday, February 15, 2011

E IS FOR...

...ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

These are photos of my elementary school in the village of Flamborough, UK., shortly before it was torn down sometime in the 70's and replaced with a new, modern building on the other side of the village.  It was called the St. Oswald's Church of England Elementary School and was the only school in the village.  I attended there from 1947-1949

I never look at the playground in the first picture without remembering the day the milkman was crossing the yard carrying milk bottles in a metal crate in the midst of a heavy snowstorm.  Suddenly there was a brilliant flash of lightning and clap of thunder simultaneously.  The milkman was struck by the lightning  --  that one flash.  There were no more. Of course, he didn't survive.  I was in Standard 6 and it was 1948.  My classroom was behind the windows on the right hand side.

Across from the school was the large village green, nothing fancy.  Just a large grassy area with  what we called the Mere on it;  rather like a very shallow lake.  The Green was too marshy most of the time to play soccer or cricket on it.


This is my class with the Headmaster and our class teacher, Mr. Wall.  I am on the back row standing next to him.  I remember the names of about four of these students. I also remember the boy who is standing in front of Mr. Wall was really, really good at Math and I wasn't!


Fast forward 30 years or so and cross the Atlantic and most of the U.S. to Oceanside, CA.  This was one of my third grade classes I taught in the 70's.  About four of these students became my pupils again in High School after I moved on to teaching high school.  It is interesting to me that of these four, none of them had changed very much at all in personality, abilities or quality of work by the time they were in High School.  My point is, that kids don't change much over the years until they hit 15 or so.... then look out!  :}

25 comments:

MorningAJ said...

I'm quite lucky really. When they moved our village school to a new building they converted the old one to a sort of community centre so it's still there. Village schools were wonderful places.

Mike said...

Nice reflections of the UK... that poor milkman! oh gosh

AutumnLeaves said...

It makes me sad to know that your old school building was torn down. As it was, I was disappointed to see the windows boarded over. It looks like quite a nice building and would have been wonderful had someone lovingly restored and re-used it. How come you aren't in the photo with your students? Love seeing old photos!

Honest Abe Lincoln said...

I must say your class photos are much better than those people gave me for our country school. Nice looking bunch of kids.

Sad about the milkman being struck by lightening.

Honest Abe Lincoln said...

This is the link to see the whole illuminated manuscript as you requested. Just copy and paste. I am afraid the picture is not that good but gives you an idea. I wasn't interested in photography in those days except to make a record. I often used Polaroid.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/oldmanlincolnphotography/5447296067/

snafu said...

I will be sending you a whole disk full of pictures from that era as soon as I have sorted and scanned the huge pile I have. Lots of Flamborough and your/our family and many much older. It may be a while yet. That is terrible about the poor milkman I did not know about that.

Elizabeth said...

It's really lovely for me to see these old views of Flamborough, Chris; thank you. I'm glad I got to hear the outcome of the milkman story - I've been wondering about that ever since you told me about it, but how tragic.
Your final paragraph reminds me of the Jesuit saying, 'Give me a man when he is seven and I will show you the man'. x

Elizabeth said...

That should of course be, 'Give me a child when he is seven and I will show you the man' !!

mrsnesbitt said...

Gosh what a memory of the poor milkman! I still have memories of school - primary too.

Thanks so much
Denise
ABC Team

Sylvia K said...

That is so sad about the milkman!! But such an interesting post for the E Day and look at those days! Have a great week!

Sylvia
ABC Team

Wanda said...

That is so interesting Chris. Love your school pictures, and as all the other, what a sad memory of the milkman.

What a treasure you are to these children. Know you were a wonderful teacher influencing these young lives.

Great post for "E"...but then you always give us great and interesting post for ABC Wed.

photowannabe said...

What a scary memory from your younger years. Poor milkman.
Isn't it strange how kids don't change but alas we do?

Roger Owen Green said...

my elementary school was razed in the 1970s; still makes me a bit sad.
ROG, ABC Wednesday team

kaybee said...

My goodness, Chris, I never heard the story of the milkman - but then I was only about 4 or 5 at the time, I guess.

Unfortunately,I don't enjoying seeing Mr. Wall; he was never a favourite of mine.

Just imagine the legacy you have deposited in the lives of all the children you taught - wonderful!

Tumblewords: said...

Terrific story - glad you shared it. Astoundingly unfortunate for the milkman...that was surely a shame.

Beverley Baird said...

Being a teacher - loved your choice for E! Isn't great to look back and remember! I know hwat you mean about kids tho. What a sad tale about the milkman - it's odd sometimes what we do remember!

claude said...

Good memories, Chris, excepted for the Milkman.
My elementary school was in Paris.
I do not know if it is always a school.

jabblog said...

Lovely ABC post:-)Happy memories, mostly. I can imagine seeing someone struck down by is an image that would never fade. Poor man!
I read your earlier post about 'Jose' - it's amazing what drive some children have and most inspiring.

Jose said...

Wow the power of pictures is that memories are constantly being re-lived. Even now I hate seeing old buildings being torn down to make room for the new look, I think when it comes to architecture it is nice to preserve and restore but that's just me.

helenmac said...

Wonderfully nostalgic post, with both the good and the bad. I love old photos like these. My elementary school still stands --yeah!
HelenMac, ABC Wednesday Team

Carver said...

Great post. I enjoyed the photographs and memories. That is terrible about what happened to the milkman. It's the kind of thing that would definitely stick with you. I went to elementary school in a small old stone building. It wasn't torn down but it's a community center now (church owned) and a much larger school was built on a different site. Probably part of what saved the elementary school building I went to is that it was an historic building and had a chapel.

chubskulit said...

Lovely old photos!

E is for Eyes that Glow

Gattina said...

How sad that the old school was torn down, they could have used it for something else.
My elementary school was a quickly built metal box, where we were 80 kids in one class, because the school had been bombed and from the city there was only 80 % left. That was in Bonn Germany. That's why I am always sad when old buildings are destroyed without a real reason.

The Weaver of Grass said...

I do love old school photographs - your brought back so many memories of my own school days.

Rosy said...

"Its fun to look at old school pictures" What a sad memory of the Milkman. I think kids are getting a much earlier start way before 15 at turning into little wild machines these days. ha ha ha