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Junior Historian: One-Room Schools

Issue #3

Audio file

From the early 1800s until the 1950s, one-room schools were how people learned if they lived in small towns or far away from big cities. One person, usually a woman, was hired to teach all the children in the area. The students were grouped by age, called a class, but they all learned in the same room.

During the day, the teacher would call each class to the front of the room. The teacher worked with those students for a set amount of time. The other students in the room would study from books or work on assignments given to them by the teacher. Lessons included reading, writing, math, spelling, and geography. If a teacher was a good artist or singer, the students might get drawing or music lessons.

Students had a morning and afternoon recess and time for lunch. Younger students would go home after the afternoon recess so the teacher could spend more time with the older students. At the end of the school year, usually in May, the teacher would hand out report cards to the children.

Work like a historian, and compare the information from the story above with the story about Hands-on Education. Use evidence (eh-vih-dents), or details, from the stories to prove your answer.