AtoZ Letter E~ Elementary Education

I was standing beside our mailbox waiting for the yellow bus to take me to the first day of school.  I assured my mother she didn't need to wait with me, but I knew she was watching while I jumped up and down in excitement.  My red satchel with a Big Chief Tablet, a fat pencil and a box of fat colors was held tightly by the black handle.  The new blue dress made by mother had puff sleeves and a peter pan collar, and in my hair were two matching blue bows.  I had on a new pair of saddle oxfords. 

At last the bus turned down the dirt road that ran in front of our house.  The door swung open...I stepped forward and stopped.  The first step hit me waist high.  I was regretting having kept my mother standing on the porch when a high school boy came down the steps, took my hand and helped me aboard and showed me my assigned seat next to the window facing our porch.  My mother was wiping her eyes with her apron. 
That was September 1, 1953...my education began with the first of many high steps to climb.  I feel fortunate to have started the climb in 1953 when report cards measured Growth in Habits and Attitudes, in Interests and Activities and kept parents informed...as noted on the back of my report card:  This report card is issued to keep you informed of the progress of your child.  If more information is desired, you are cordially invited to confer with the teacher or principal.

I loved school. I loved riding the bus. I loved my teacher.  That lasted for three six weeks and then...we moved.

For the 4th and 5th Six Weeks I didn't miss a single day at my new school.  I am sure I must have missed my 1st through 3rd Six Weeks school friends, teacher and bus driver. 

As vivid as my memories are of those first weeks of school...in comparison the move, the new school and classmates were and still are a complete blank.  If not for the report card and the class picture, I would never have made an **Incredible Connection some 50 years later. 

For the 6th 6 Weeks of the first grade we moved again.  Back to my assigned seat on the bus, back to my classmates and beloved teacher. 

For the life of me I can't remember moving back. 
**Incredible Connection...Letter F...First Grade Fated Attraction


Empty Nest Insider said...

It must have been very confusing moving back and forth. I love how you saved your report card, and how detailed it was. I can't believe you even remembered having assigned seats on the bus! A wonderful look back, Sue!


Tasha Duncan-Drake said...

Brains hold on to what is important don't they :) Lovely memory. I especially liked that part about the step.
Tasha's Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

Sue McPeak said...

I talk about the moving back and forth in Letter F. It was a pattern for my parents. Haven't report cards changed? My mother was a saver...thankfully. Riding the bus was a big deal...very strong memories there.

Sue McPeak said...

Yes, they do, and it's amazing how it records and stores little things and forgets the big events.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Sue - fascinating to read and what on earth was going on moving between schools at that stage - hopefully tomorrow will tell ... Brilliant you've go the report cards .. and then that connection of 50 years ... yay - what fun is coming .. cheers Hilary

Joanne said...

glad the moves worked out for you. I can't say I liked riding a school bus - it was a haven for bullies. I learned a lot about keeping a stiff upper chin. Back in the day it was a cold cruel world - but I loved school once I got there.

Cranberry Morning said...

Yeah, I think those moves are hard on kids. Glad you have that report card and memory joggers.

Lisa said...

My husband said when his parents moved the family to France (when he was 6 years old) he didn't remember anything of those first few years because it was such a shock to him and he had so much to learn very quickly. I bet that's what happened to you too... How great you still have all of this to remember those days by! Like your theme! Lisa, co-host AtoZ 2015, @ http://www.lisabuiecollard.com

Su-sieee! Mac said...

How sweet that a high school boy led you up the bus steps and made sure you were safe in your seat. Good for that school district for thinking kindly of children.
The View from the Top of the Ladder

Sue McPeak said...

Yes, Hilary...tomorrow will tell.

Sue McPeak said...

Country school back in 1953 was a kinder gentler time for the youngest kids on the bus...we rode in the front seats....and if there were bullies I imagine they were in the back.

Sue McPeak said...

Yes, moving was hard...more so the older you got. The hardest part for me was Math. I was always behind.

Sue McPeak said...

I can just imagine how hard moving to a foreign country would be and having to learn a new language and different culture. On the other had, what a great experience. Yes, I feel lucky to have the photos and memorabilia.

Sue McPeak said...

As I mentioned earlier, small country schools were probably a lot different than big town/city schools. All grades were in one large building/complex and the older kids were mentors to the younger ones.

Barbara In Caneyhead said...

Perhaps you don't remember moving back because moving back didn't seem traumatic.
Life & Faith in Caneyhead
I am Ensign B ~ One of Tremp's Troops with the
A to Z Challenge

Suzy said...

What an interesting report card. Cute pictures and memories particularly the waist high step, Incidentally my letter E is also Education - quite different though.
Dropping by from the A to Z
Suzy at Someday Somewhere

Wendy said...

I LOVED elementary school. Every year I got new saddle oxfords: one year brown and white, one year navy and white, one year black and white. After that I guess I moved on to a new style. I also got a new book bag every year. I had a red plaid lunch pail; it was oval and had a shallow tray where Momma packed a napkin and cookies. The sandwich and fruit were in the bottom of the pail. I recall struggling to open the lid after a bit because it had begun to rust.

Arlee Bird said...

You captured this well. During most of my elementary school days I walked to school since it was close enough to do so. In San Diego the neighborhood was so dense that everyone lived close enough to walk and there were no buses. That changed when we moved to Indiana and I was in junior high. During the cold winters I welcomed being on that bus for a while.

Arlee Bird
A to Z Challenge Co-host
Tossing It Out


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