Oddity of the Week - One-Room Education

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What does/did your school look like?

One-Room Education

Old Eagle School.

Back in the 18th Century, people in Pennsylvania counted themselves lucky to get any kind of education. They didn't argue about 'outcome-based initiatives' or 'higher-order thinking skills'. They just gave the kids a lunch pail and sent them up the (steepish) hill to the little schoolhouse.

This one, in Tredyffrin Township outside Philadelphia, is called Old Eagle School. It's on Old Eagle School Road, if you care to visit. Old Eagle School was put up in 1788, the year they ratified the US Constitution. A lot of schoolchildren must have logged a lot of learning hours there.

In 1895, the trustees of the school restored the old building. After all, it's considered to be the oldest school building in Chester County. It's an attractive addition to the neighbourhood, and it reminds of the priorities of those Pennsylvania settlers:

First, get the people and animals under shelter. Next, plough the field. Third, raise a meeting house, where you can pray and discuss things in the open. Fourth, build yourself a school. The children may need to know how to read and write.

You can wait until later to buy them a laptop.

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Dmitri Gheorgheni

09.09.13 Front Page

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