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Old 09-16-2023, 10:25 PM
 
Location: Crook County, Hellinois
5,820 posts, read 3,802,207 times
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Let's hear about ingenious things your school did for its students. It can be educational/academic or it can be anything that made for a nicer school experience. Mine was this: a "fifth-grade practice day".

First, a little bit of background information. I went to a K-thru-8 elementary school, which are quite rare these days. Kindergarten was in it own self-contained classroom. We left only for lunch and gym. And even then, some gym classes were held right in the room; we went to the gymnasium only for things requiring extra space and/or sports equipment, like the parachute. (Remember those, folks? ) Grades 1 thru 4 were in a single classroom for all "main" subjects, like English or math. "Specialty" subjects, like art, gym, or computers (on Mac II desktops, no less) were in their own rooms and taught by their own teachers. Grades 5 thru 8 had their own classrooms for all subjects, with a homeroom where we started and ended most of our days.

Well, in late spring of 4th grade, the school did the "fifth-grade practice day". That's where the school simulated the daily experience we were to have next year. Our usual teacher taught the day's first class/subject, but we went to other classrooms for all other subjects. (One of them was library science, which required leaving our classroom anyway.) Each class was taught like it would be on any other day, with the usual classwork and homework, except taught by a different teacher. At the end of the day, we went back to our usual teacher. She led a discussion to give us an opportunity to debrief about the whole experience, and handed out candy. Things were back to normal the next school day.

While I took it as a mildly fun diversion at the time, looking back, I think it was pure genius! First off, it was a fun introduction to a upcoming new academic experience. Second, since there were multiple 4th-grade classrooms/teachers, coordinating a day like that, where each subject and its corresponding academic work had to be meticulously arranged, in a grade level not designed for it, must have been a hell of a challenge for the teachers and the principal. And for me, getting to see other classrooms was all the more interesting.

Last edited by MillennialUrbanist; 09-16-2023 at 10:42 PM.. Reason: text revision/clarification.
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Old 09-16-2023, 11:05 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
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I've never heard of gym for kindergarteners. Come to think of it, I didn't have gym at all in grade school, either. All subjects were taught in each grade's "self-contained room", as you called it, through 6th grade.

I guess my school wasn't very "ingenious" or innovative.
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Old 09-17-2023, 12:03 AM
 
Location: Crook County, Hellinois
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth4Truth View Post
I've never heard of gym for kindergarteners. Come to think of it, I didn't have gym at all in grade school, either. All subjects were taught in each grade's "self-contained room", as you called it, through 6th grade.
Well, my kindergarten grade didn't have proper gym classes on most gym days. We did things like walk around the classroom pretending to be animals as exercise. Occasionally, like when older grades weren't using the gymnasium, we ventured there for parachute and such, since the self-contained classroom wasn't big enough for it.

From 1st grade onwards, gym classes became more like what you'd expect: organized activities, like relay races or jumping jacks, or sports, like kickball or track and field, in an actual gymnasium. Play-pretend games were phased out within a year or so.
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Old 09-17-2023, 12:29 AM
 
Location: State of Transition
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MillennialUrbanist View Post
Well, my kindergarten grade didn't have proper gym classes on most gym days. We did things like walk around the classroom pretending to be animals as exercise. Occasionally, like when older grades weren't using the gymnasium, we ventured there for parachute and such, since the self-contained classroom wasn't big enough for it.

From 1st grade onwards, gym classes became more like what you'd expect: organized activities, like relay races or jumping jacks, or sports, like kickball or track and field, in an actual gymnasium. Play-pretend games were phased out within a year or so.
OK, now you're jogging some memories. I guess we did have that type of "gym" class: relay races, kickball, etc.
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Old 09-17-2023, 12:58 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
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Attending a country school, and being a farmer meant you were required to be ingenious and inventive many times / day, (Or you couldn't survive life in the country).

The school was the center of our community, and we all had to participate to keep the school funded, supplied, and make it work!

Such as, school was not in session during key harvest times, but everyone was working, including students and teachers.
During the deep of winter, the school served as a community meeting place for meals, fund raisers, and community support; including being a disaster relief center for flood, fires, tornadoes....and lessons and examples of providing care to your (entire) community, Often 3 generations of previous and current students were present. We used the gym for community sports, public meetings and receptions. Sometimes a hospital or shelter, and often community fund raising meals, or to feed the needy. (or those stranded in a blizzard),

Students in Upper grades were responsible for tutoring and mentoring the younger, or less capable.

There was a very obvious 'paddle' hanging on the wall of principal's office. And you knew when it was used. Seldom was needed

We have participated in similar schools when living on a remote island and on a ranch that hosted a rancher's community 'boarding school' during the week.

Our kindergarten wsa also 'stand-alone'. seperate building and seperate gym / play area.

You were thrown in with all the wolves when you arrived at first grade. (all grown up)!
There were no organized sports. You came to school to get some rest!
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Old 09-17-2023, 07:18 AM
 
9,952 posts, read 6,530,104 times
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I don’t know if I can recall anything specific. I went to what was basically a hippie private school on a former peacock refuge. At that time, the facilities were very basic- mostly portables and the bathroom was basically like your standard unheated/cooled park bathroom. We ate outside with the peacocks (who stole your food), ducks, snapping turtles, and possibly one alligator in the pond. We had PE everyday.

I guess the main/unusual feature was the 7th grade trip to backpack the Appalachian trail. Looking back, I feel like they didn’t prepare us at all, but to be fair it was THE school trip (school was K-8) and you heard about it the entire time you were coming up. I am pretty sure they had us marching around a lot in our hiking boots for weeks when we got them. I still ended up absolutely miserable on the trip because I was probably a whole 95 pounds and this was more than 30 years ago when equipment was HEAVY. My whole back was a big bruise, I had digestion problems, and it rained 90% of the time. I haven’t been backpacking since, but I may give it a whirl again now that everything is a more reasonable weight (including me).
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Old 09-17-2023, 08:48 AM
 
Location: southwestern PA
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https://www.glsd.us/apps/pages/index...REC_ID=1965521

One of the Greater Latrobe School District’s treasures is a unique art collection featuring over 200 paintings; it is the largest one in the United States that is entirely student-selected and, for the most part, student purchased.
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