1967 – We moved from Grand Mound and back to the family-owned farm in Zenkner Valley just north of Centralia just before school started. Attended Oakview Elementary School. Second grade teacher was Mrs. Steele and third grade was Mrs. Olson. We had a large amount of students that they had to have 2 classrooms. It stayed that way all the way through 4thgrade. All the other grades were only a single classroom.
I struggled as things were totally different from Grand Mound. One thing – you didn’t have workbooks to write in. It was actual textbooks. Another was the method of teaching – there was a change in Math (that through me for a major loop and struggled all the way till 6th grade). Even reading was taught differently – no Dick & Jane but SLR Reading (this is where you read a story and took tests. If you past the test, then you got to move on to the next card. It seems like if you passed x number in that section, you got to move up to the next reading level). I was placed fairly high.
Each of the classrooms had pianos that the teachers played for our “music”. Every morning started out saying the pledge of allegiance and singing a patriotic song. We took turns leading and choosing the song. Our day started at 9 am and ended at 2:30 (an hour less than what I had in Grand Mound, so I was more tired). We had a morning and afternoon recess. We had to stay at our end of the playground (unless it was raining, then we can use the playshed). Lunch was eaten in the gym in shifts (right after our lunch, we had recess).
I started in Girl Scouts as a Brownie. The boys loved taking our “beanies”. There was a “dress code” – girls couldn’t wear pants although some rebelled. By the time 6th grade rolled around, we could wear slacks but not jeans.
I can remember memorizing a very long poem called “Trees” for a school-wide program to our parents. Our whole class did various poems. There was one about boys & girls. Another about the number of days in a month. My first experience on being on stage in front of a huge audience. I never saw my family but did see the neighbors that we were good friends with. I used them as my focus point. I returned to that stage several years’ later (high school doing a Shakespeare play for the school).
I believe I had perfect attendance in the 2nd grade but not so in the 3rd (don’t remember why).