THE GOOD OLD DAYS
RULES FOR TEACHERS 1872
* Teachers each day
will fill lamps, clean chimneys.
* Each teacher will
bring a bucket of water and a scuttle of coal for the day's session.
* Make your pens carefully.
You may whittle nibs to the individual tastes of the pupil.
* Men teachers may
take one evening each week for courting purposes or two evenings a week
if they go to church regularly.
* After ten hours
in school, the teachers may spend the remaining time reading the Bible
or other good books.
* Women teachers who
marry or engage in unseemly conduct will be dismissed.
* Every teacher should
lay aside from each pay a goodly sum of his earnings for his benefit during
his declining years so that he will not become a burden on society.
* Any teacher who
smokes, used liquor in any forms, frequents pool or public halls or gets
shaved in a barbershop will give good reason to suspect his worth, intention,
integrity and honesty.
* The teacher who
performs his labor faithfully and without fault for five years will be
given an increase of twenty-five cents per week in his pay, providing the
Board of Education approves.
RULES FOR 1915 SCHOOLTEACHERS
Truly, the life style of
a schoolteacher has changed radically in the last 50 or 60 years.
For example, a 1915 teachers' magazine listed the following rules of conduct
for teachers of that day.
* You will not marry
during the term of your contract.
* You are not to keep
company with men.
* You must be home
between the hours of 8 pm and 6 am unless attending a school function.
* You may not loiter
downtown in any of the ice cream stores.
* You may not travel
beyond the city limits unless you have the permission of the chairman of
* You may not ride
in a carriage or automobile with any man unless he is your father or brother.
* You may not smoke
* You may under no
circumstances dye your hair.
* You may not smoke
* You may not dress
in bright colors.
* You must wear at
least two petticoats.
* Your dresses must
not be any shorter than two inches above your ankle.
* To keep the schoolroom
neat and clean, you must: scrub the floor at least once a week with hot,
soapy water; clean the blackboards at least once a day; and start the fire
at 7 am so the room will be warm by 8 am.
(President's Notes. Pennsylvania
State Education Association)
RULES FOR STUDENTS
Good students in early schools
were expected to earn more than high marks. There were many rules
to follow and duties to perform. The schoolmaster really was the
'master' of his pupils. Children were told to obey the master of
the school even if obedience meant having to stand still while being strapped.
Here are a some rules for students.
* Respect your schoolmaster.
Obey him and accept his punishments.
* Do not call your
classmates names of fight with them. Love and help each other.
* Never make noises
or disturb your neighbors as they work.
* Be silent during
classes. Do not talk unless it is absolutely necessary.
* Do not leave your
seat without permission.
* No more than one
student at a time may go to the washroom.
* At the end of the
class, wash your hands and face. Wash your feet if they are bare.
* Bring firewood into
the classroom for the stove whenever the teacher tells you to.
* Go quietly in and
out of the classroom.
* If the master calls
your name after class, straighten the benches and tables. Sweep the
room, dust and leaving everything tidy.
THERE MUST BE BETTER WAYS TO LEARN
* Some schools were
open only for a few months each year. The rest of the time children
worked at home.
* A teacher could
not teach all the students at the same time because they were in different
grades. They had to wait their turns.
* Some students were
older than the teacher. They soon learned all the teacher had to
* The bigger students
could not fit their long legs under the desks. The smaller students
had to dangle their legs from the high benches.
* Often the teacher
was too busy to think of interesting ways to teach. Many classed
were devoted to reading or memorizing.
* Even art class was
boring. Students had to draw objects on a slate exactly as the teacher
told them to.
* The teacher did
not tell exciting stories about people in history. Students memorized
names and dates instead.
* Children marched
to and from their desks. This was the only exercise they had.
There was no gym stress.
*Discipline was harsh in
many schools. Children hd to stand in corners, wear dunce caps, balance
on blocks of wood and wear signs tied around their necks. Many teachers
also gave the strap.