Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Clyde River School’ Category

Our research continues into our collection of Clyde River School textbooks (1880s-1920s). We came across a spelling book used at the beginning of the 1900s – Gage & Co’s Educational SeriesThe Practical Speller – 20th Century Edition – printed in 1901 (208 pages). A sobering message is found in the preface, pointing to the importance of teaching spelling:

Is a Speller a Necessary School Book? The old-fashioned spelling book has been discarded by teachers generally. Many valid objections were properly urged against it use and it passed away.

Entire dependence upon oral spelling may also be fitly styled a method of bygone days. Unfortunately for the old spelling book it was associated with all the folly and weakness of “oral spelling,” and this partly accounts for its rejection.

What have the reformers given as a substitute for a Speller? They took our bread and have given in return but a stone. The bread even though a little stale was much more wholesome than the stone. In Canada parts of the lessons to be found in the Readers are taken as dictation lessons, and the pupils are turned loose on society to shock it by their bad spelling, and disgrace the school which they attended, and which they should have been taught. The readers to not contain all the words that boys and girls will have to spell in life, and if they did, the lessons are not arranged in proper form for spelling lessons. Only a comparatively small portion of readers can be written from dictation in schools. Bad as were the old spellers, they were infinitely better than nothing. This fact is now recognized in Great Britain and the United States, in both of which countries many valuable spelling books have recently been issued. That these were necessary in England is clearly shown by the fact that at a recent Civil Service Examination “no less than 1861 out of 1972 failures were caused by spelling.”

A practical dictation Speller is clearly a necessity, and this work has been prepared to supply an obvious want in the program in Canadian schools. The claim to the name “Practical” is based on the fact that is not a mere collection of thousands of “long-tailed works in osity and ation,” but contains a graded series of lessons to teach pupils the proper spelling of the words which all have to use.

A glimpse at parts of the textbook (click on any photo to enlarge and advance through gallery:

Editor’s note: If you wish to view the full digital copy, we found an edition here at archive.org.

 

Read Full Post »

In gathering artifacts in Clyde River for our museum, we have been given a good number of textbooks from the Beer family which were used to teach the children of Clyde River School from the late 1880s to the early 1900s. In reviewing these, I have discovered the delightful education they received despite their humble rural upbringing. It’s no wonder they acquired abilities to recite great poetry, calculate math easily in their heads, and name off the countries of the world and, as a result, were interested to know about the world. As I go through these texts, I would like to offer you a glimpse into a child’s education at that time. We will begin with a Geography book, Calkin’s Introductory Geography – The World: An Elementary Geography, from 1885 written by John Burgess Calkin.

John Burgess Calkin was born in 1829 in Nova Scotia and became a leading figure in Nova Scotia public education. Calkin was principal for many years of the Provincial Normal School that later became the Nova Scotia Teachers College. He authored several textbooks, best known for his geography and history texts. He passed in 1918.

The preface of this geography book sets the tone:

The school is merely an introduction to the child’s education. Its chief aims should be to strengthen the desire to know more of those objects which it brings into view, and to point out the paths that lead to the unknown. On parting company with his teacher, the pupil is prepared to become an independent worker, and to pursue his way with ever-increasing interest and power.

The textbook performs its proper function when it becomes an auxiliary of the school in working out these aims. While it conveys valuable truth respecting its subject, its higher purpose should be to awaken an interest in that subject, and to lead to systematic and persevering effort in searching it out more fully.

In studying geography, children need to realize that they are acquiring knowledge of things which have a real existence in the world around them, and that this knowledge has been gained by such observation as they are capable of exercising. The only sure way of securing this is, at the outset, to take them to something that is tangible. The first knowledge presented must be concrete, and should be given through oral lessons on their own neighborhood. In this way, beginners acquire clear and definite ideas as to the nature of the study upon which they are entering, and they are led upward from things to definitions and principles.

In following that approach, he begins the book with a chapter: “The School District or Section”, where he describes the school-house in a country community in a way that they will understand the underpinnings of grasping geography.

This is a picture of a school-house in the country. The boys and girls are assembling for school. Around their homes, scattered here and there through the neighborhood are hills, valleys, level fields, and woodlands. It is summer, and the country is very beautiful. The farmers are busy with their haymaking in the meadows. Near by are patches of grain and potatoes and on the sunny slopes are orchards which, in the autumn, will be laden with apples and pears. A way up on the hillsides are the pastures where the cows and sheep are quietly feeding. In the valleys, the brooks which have come down from the springs among the hills are winding their way, and hasting to the sea. Here, on holidays, the boys love to fish or sail their tiny boats, and girls love to stroll along the green banks and gather wildflowers.

He goes on to describe that other children may live on the seaside where the land is rocky and they have views of sailing ships. Yet others live in the city where there are no fields or brooks, but rather houses and shops with narrow streets between them where there are many kinds of things such as printers who print books and newspapers. Or others may live near coal mines and the men are miners or places where the men are lumbermen and when the spring comes, they float logs to the mills and saw them into lumber.

He suggests to the children that they should create a little geography of their own neighborhood to understand what kind of place they live in – observe all the features of their home and the places near it. They should make a little drawing of their school or at least a floor plan. From there, they can draw, the playground and any other objects around. Then, they can draw the neighborhood in which they live, marking the roads, the buildings, the brooks, the fields and any other things that they have observed. The result will be their own community map.

He continues by describing the province they live in, their country – Dominion of Canada, where if they travelled west, they would see lakes larger than their province and see mountains where at the peaks there is snow all year long, and, on the west coast, they would see another large ocean. The text then leads down through North America where the country is warmer and the waters of the east and west draw closer and then to South America.

In the next chapter, he takes students on a “Voyage Round the World” where they leave Halifax by steamship and sail east across the Atlantic Ocean.

In a few hours we lose sight of land, and there is nothing to be seen but the sea, with here and there a distant sail. We see no path, nor any sign to direct us; but the captain, with his compass and chart, can take us directly across the pathless ocean as if he followed a beaten track. He needs to know his duty well and to manage carefully, for sometimes we are surrounded by fog, so that we can scarcely see from one end of the ship to the other. In such a fog, we might run against another ship, or against rocks, and be dashed to pieces.

Who wouldn’t be captivated by this adventure? Throughout the book are detailed drawings of scenes from different cultures. It is easy to see how he was able to capture a child’s imagination and build a curiosity of the world which would remain with them throughout their lives.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

At the back of the book, he lists populations within the Dominion of Canada and other countries. Here are a few from within the Dominion:

  • Prince Edward Island – 108,981  – Charlottetown – 11,485
  • Nova Scotia – 440,572 – Halifax – 36,100
  • New Brunswick – 321,233 – Fredericton – 6,218
  • Quebec – 1,359,027 – Montreal – 140,747
  • Ontario – 1,923,228 – Toronto – 86,415
  • Manitoba – 123,200 – Winnipeg – 7,744
  • British Columbia – 49,459 – Victoria – 5,925
  • Districts & Territories  56,446 – Includes Assiniboia, Saskatchewan, Alberta, Athabasca, Keewatin, Northwest and Northeast Territories.
  • Below, they list Newfoundland with a population of 181,753  – joined Canada in 1949.

Dominion of Canada 1880s (click to enlarge photo)

Central Europe – 1880s

Click here to view a digital version of the book updated and reprinted in 1898.

Read Full Post »

The following is a transcription of a document donated to Clyde River Archives by the Beer Family which highlights the early history of the Dog River/Clyde River School District and offers us a full list of teachers along with a few school reports. This information also appeared in the History & Stories of Clyde River

Clyde River School District No. 63. It is in Queens County and defined as follows:

That is to say beginning on Elliot River at Donald MacNeill’s west line of land and running thence north in said line to the north line of said land; thence east to John Livingstone’s rear line of land; thence north in said line and west line of Duncan MacLean’s to the main road; thence east by the main road to Robert Boyle’s, east line of land being west of John MacPhail’s land; thence in said line to George Livingston’s west line of land; thence east to his east line; thence north to his north line; thence west to his west line; thence north to south line of Peter McElroy’s land; thence east to west line of Angus MacPhail’s land; thence north to James Beer’s north line of land; thence east in said line of Bannockburn Road; thence north by said road to George Dixon’s north line of land; thence east to east line of said land; thence south continuing in west line of W.E. Fraser’s land to south line of the same; thence east to west line of William Leonard’s land; thence south continued in west line of John MacQuarrie’s land to south east angle of Lem Hyde’s land; thence west in south lines of lands of Lem Hyde and others to Charles Fisher’s west line; thence north in said line to Clyde River and; thence by the shores of Clyde River and Elliot River to place of commencement.

Registered here in 6th day of May 1882.

Dog River School Teachers & Reports:

  • 1834 – Neil Shaw
  • 1838 – Malcolm Darrach – The number attending school at this time is 45. All were present the day the visitor visited the school. The greater number of these had made rapid progress, since their last examination in Arithmetic and Reading and two were advanced in English Grammar. The same good improvement was not manifest in the writing of scholars. This appeared to be owing more to the want of suitable desks than to any inattention on the part of the teacher. School house comfortable, but not sufficiently large.
  • 1839 – Malcolm Darrach – The daily average attendance is 40. The proficiency of the pupils generally since last examined has been satisfactory. The correct manner in which the senior classes especially read, and the knowledge of Grammar which they displayed, was highly pleasing. The school has been considerably enlarged since my last visit.
  • 1840 – Malcolm Darrach – The average daily attendance is 40. The proficiency this year in Grammar and Arithmetic has been satisfactory. The writing was not so good.
  • 1843 – The school has been open at intervals during the past year, on account of the indisposition of the Teacher, otherwise there has been no falling off in the attendance or the usefulness of the school.
  • 1845-1847 – Malcolm Darrach
  • 1848-1857 – John Livingston – 1857 – The examination showed marked improvement. The house is very sufficient.
  • 1858-1859 – John Livingston – 1859 – The potato raising not being quite over in the district, the senior pupils have not yet returned to school since the termination of the vacation. Left a notice to the Trustees to the effect that unless the School house which is greatly out of repair, be put into a better condition, without unnecessary delay, and the same be forthwith certified to the Board of Education, the school will be closed.
  • 1860 – Teacher – John Livingston – 36 pupils. Proficiency of scholars moderate.
  • 1862-63 – John Livingston

Clyde River Teachers:

  • 1864-73 – John Livingston – 1873 – School greatly improved since last visit.
  • 1874-75 – John Livingston
  • 1875-77 – no teacher listed
  • 1877-78 – M. MacQuarrie (50 pupils)
  • 1878-79 – John Livingston
  • 1879-81 – Angus MacDonald
  • 1881-82 – Mary Jane MacQuarrie
  • 1882-86 – Patrick Berrigan
  • 1887-89 – William H. Cummings
  • 1889-93 – John A. MacDougall
  • 1893-94 – Alice A. Murchison
  • 1894-95 – S.B. Enman
  • 1895-97 – Roderick MacKenzie
  • 1897-99 – Robert W. Jones
  • 1899-1900 – Thomas W. Stretch
  • 1900-01 – Donald MacLeod
  • 1901-04 – John MacDougall
  • 1904-05 – Helen White/Mrs. Wes Bell
  • 1905-06 – Etta Huestis
  • 1906-08 – Maude B. Stewart
  • 1908-11 – Irene Dixon
  • 1911-13 – Margaret MacQuarrie (Mrs. G. Dixon)
  • 1913-14 – Malcolm E. Murchison
  • 1914-15 – Mary MacDonald
  • 1915-16 – Edward MacPhail
  • 1916-17 – Charles E. MacDuff
  • 1917-18 – Marion MacQuarrie
  • 1918-19 – Elsie S. Brown
  • 1919-20 – Minnie Inman – Jeannie Mustard
  • 1920-21 – Gordon Holmes
  • 1921-22 – Christine MacLeod
  • 1922-25 – Edward MacPhail
  • 1925-26 – Marion L. MacSwain
  • 1926-31 – Millar MacFadyen
  • 1931-36 – Winnifred Best
  • 1936-37 – Laura Livingstone
  • 1937-41 – Lee Darrach
  • 1941-44 – Christine MacNevin
  • 1944-49 – Reta Cruwys
  • 1949-50 – Shirley MacDonald
  • 1950-53 – Joyce Nicholson-MacPhee
  • 1953-54 – John Trowsdale
  • 1954-55 – Kathleen MacFadyen – Inez Gass
  • 1955-56 – Audrey Frizzell – Violet Frizzell
  • 1956-57 – Theresa Donahue
  • 1957-58 – Elsie Hickox – Mrs. Winnifred MacMillan
  • 1958-59 – Mrs. Winnifred MacMillan
  • 1959-60 – Ida Deagle
  • 1960-61 – Anna MacLennan
  • 1961-64 – Flossie Hyde
  • 1964-66 – Flossie Hyde – Victoria Morrison (1965 – School expansion with new additional accommodating grades 1-4 and existing room accommodating grades 5-8.)
  • 1966-67 – Diane Adams – Victoria Morrison – Ruth Mutch
  • 1967-68 – Laura MacBeth – Victoria Morrison
  • 1968-69 – Jean Hardy – Frances Ramsay
  • 1969-70 – Sylvia Bell – Frances Ramsay
  • 1970-71 – Sylvia Bell – Anne Marie MacDonald – Victoria Morrison – Helen Hughes
  • 1971 – Sylvia Bell – Victoria Morrison

Editor’s Notes:

  • After 1971, Clyde River School was closed and students were sent to Cornwall Junior High and Charlottetown Rural High School. Clyde River School has had many wonderful improvements and is an active community centre, managed by the Clyde River Women’s Institute.
  • Visiting Music Teacher in 1960s was Phyllis Newman

Read Full Post »

So, do you think you are smarter than your Grandma or Grandpa? Here are arithmetic problems from a textbook in the 1930s. Hint: you may have to ask your Grandparents to help you solve these.

  1. In walking around a field, starting at the south-west corner, you go north 36 rd., then north-east 60 rd., then south 72 rd., then west 48 rd. to the starting point. Find the number of acres in the field.
  2. A house and lot cost $4500, the value of the house being $3600. The house is insured for 3/4 of its value at .8%, and repairs for the year cost $40. The property is assessed for 2/3 of its value, and the tax rate is 18 mills on the dollar. What rent per annum must be received in order to realize a 4% investment?
  3. A solution for spraying fruit trees and plants is made up of Lime (4lb.), Copper sulphate (4 lb.), Paris Green (1.4 lb.) and Water (50 gallons). What will 100 gal. of such a mixture cost, if lime costs 5 cents per lb., copper sulphate 40 cents per lb., and Paris green 75 cents per lb.?
  4. Ten pigs weighing 56 lb. each and bought for $50, after feeding for 120 days weight 224 lb. each. They then sell for $5.625 per cwt. What is the net profit, if it cost 4.25 cents in feed to produce l lb. of gain?
  5. In sewing, the uneven-basting stitch is 3/8 long and 1/4 in. in space. How many stitches must be taken to sew a seam 2 ft. 3 in. long?
  6. Rolled oats require 1 3/4 hr. cooking on a range, but if a fireless cooker is used, 15 min. cooking on the range and the rest of the time in the fireless cooker. How much fuel is saved by using the fireless cooker, if 8.6 cu. ft. of gas per hour are used by a gas burner, gas costing 70 cents per thousand cu.ft.?
  7. For flavoring, 1 oz. of chocolate is equivalent to two tablespoons of cocoa. Chocolate costs 44 cents per lb. and cocoa 25 cents per box of 1/2 lb. There are 8 tablespoonfuls of cocoa in one box. Which is cheaper to use?
  8. Mrs. Murray is about to make a dusting cap 20 in. in diameter. She sews lace around the edge and allows for one half extra in fullness, and 1 in. in from the edge she sews beading. How much lace and beading are needed?
  9. If one sheep consumes 700 lb. of hay worth $16 per t., $1 worth of pasture, and 5 bu. of oats worth 40 cents per bu., in 1 year., find the cost of raising a flock of 210 sheep in a year.
  10. If 12 horses can plough 96 ac. in 6 da., how many horses will plough 64 ac. in 8 da.?

Read Full Post »

Millar’s Life Review was provided to us by Joanne (MacFadyen) Turner which was written by Norma Thomson (Millar’s niece, Norman’s daughter) in 1986 for a course she had taken on the Dynamics of Communication with the Elderly and their Families. Millar MacFadyen taught at Clyde River, Cornwall, Kingston and East Wiltshire Schools during his career. Millar would have been 87 at the time of this interview.

Millar, Eric & Norman MacFadyen

Millar, Eric & Norman MacFadyen

Millar was born at Kingston on June 13, 1898. He was the second oldest of a family of seven children. He traces his ancestry to the Argyles (Argyll) of Scotland. Millar’s mother descended from the Campbell’s of Mull and family history suggests he was a descendant of the 5th Duke of Argyle (or Argyll).

Millar and his oldest brother started to school the same year. He was only five years old and his brother was six. He told me back in those days, you could do that. He went to a one-room schoolhouse with approximately 40 pupils all taught by the same teacher from grades 1 to 10. The older pupils helped the teacher out with the younger pupils. He attended school for 14 years.

Norman MacFadyen, Millar's older brother

Norman MacFadyen, Millar’s older brother

By then, the First World War had broken out and his older brother had gone overseas. Millar stayed at home for two years and helped his father on the farm. During this time, he decided he wanted to become a teacher, so he wrote and passed the matriculation examination into Prince of Wales College where he obtained a teacher’s license.

From 1918-1922, he taught school at Cornwall. While there, he met and married Marion Lewis and they were married on December 20th, 1922.

img_2354-1

Millar’s parents: Sarah Jane (Campbell) & John Archibald

He remembers the Christmas of 1918 as a very sad time for the family, as on December 17th, his mother passed away suddenly. She was only 48 years old. The youngest of her children were twin girls, only eight years old. The first world war was just over and they were waiting for the return of the oldest boy from the war. He wasn’t able to get home until July 1920. In 1921, Eric, a brother two years younger than Millar died of T.B. He was just 21.

After his marriage, Millar moved in with his father on the home farm in Kingston. He taught school from 1922-24. He had 51 pupils in grades 1-10. In 1924, he taught at East Wiltshire for two years and then taught at Clyde River until 1932 when he returned to Kingston School and taught until 1935. He farmed and taught school for 16 years. He would get up at 3:00 a.m. and cultivate four acres before he went to school and four more acres in the evening during the busy season.

Millar & Marion (Lewis) MacFadyen

Millar & Marion (Lewis) MacFadyen

In 1941, he obtained the position of principal at Parkdale School and was there for there for 14 years. He taught grades 7 to 10. In 1955, he received a position with the Department of Education as Director of Correspondence Study and Truant Officer of Prince Edward Island. He retired in 1972 at the age of 74 years after working 17 years at the Department of Education.

When he first started teaching, his salary was $305 a year, and, in the final year at the Department of Education, $19,000 a year. When he retired, he received a pension of $3400.

Concerts were the highlight of the school year. At these concerts, they would raise money for needed school equipment. One year, they purchased a teacher’s desk and chair. Another year, it was a bookcase, and, another year, they purchased a school organ for $75. During the depression years, there was not enough money to buy paint for the school, so they held a concert to raise money to buy paint.

In those early years, grades were not mentioned, as a child started with the first primer, second primer, book I, book II, book III, and book IV. Another highlight was the Red Cross organization. He wrote a script for radio and had several people take part. This program was well received by the radio fans, In Parkdale, he organized a program where four pupils would answer questions by one of the other pupils. They had a program every Friday. Questions were asked regarding the home, marriage, boyfriends, religion, etc. The first program lasted five minutes. The final one in June was timed and it had to be discontinued after one and a half hours.

Millar said, “The students enjoyed the program and learned a great deal about Canada, people and how to conduct themselves. It was a great asset towards discipline, and it taught each one how to express themselves without fear, because they became conversant with many topics. A great need is to show that we care for other people. It also showed children that we were interested in their welfare. This is teaching democracy and that we must have as leaders people of high moral character and integrity. We must give our children the right kind of training.”

Millar emphasized that in the old days, teachers taught and did not emphasize their salary. He said, “Today, we need good leadership and the guidance. Our forefathers have left us a good heritage. We must make changes as time passes on but let us preserve the best things of the past and make changes for improvement. Remember, without a good past, we cannot have a great future. Let us remember that the little schoolhouse has produced great leaders in the past.”

Millar attended the Presbyterian Church all his life. He became an elder in 1950 of Zion Presbyterian Church in Charlottetown. He was Clerk of Session for ten years and taught bible class for 15 years. When a charge did not have a minister, he took his turn in the pulpit. He was secretary of the Men’s Association for nine years and of Presbytery for three years.

He retired in 1972 at 74 years of age, and since that time, he has written three books of poetry and several single poems. He was a member of the Gideon Society for several years and during those years preached several sermons. He was a delegate from the Prince Edward Island Teachers’ Federation to the Canadian Teachers’ Federation twice, once in Winnipeg and once in Toronto. Millar’s first train ride was in 1941 when he travelled from Charlottetown to Winnipeg to attend the meeting.

He remembers his first car ride and that was in 1916. A friend of his was driving around and picked him up to take him for a ride. He was much older when he had his first plane trip, when he travelled from Charlottetown to Toronto for a funeral. He said, “It was necessary for me to get to my destination in a hurry, so it was my only choice to go on the plane.”

I asked Millar what his favourite word was. He said “Sui Generis” which means unique, unequalled or unparalleled.

I asked Millar if he had his life to live over again, what would he do differently. He answered, “Nothing different, I have thoroughly enjoyed my life.”

Editor and family notes:

  • Millar lived 99 years, 1 month. He died July 14th, 1997.
  • Clipping about Clyde River School examinations include a thank you letter from students, click here.
  • Millar was principal of Parkdale School during his career. When some of his former pupils had a reunion at the new Parkdale School on Confederation Street, they planted a tree and placed a plaque in the front yard for Millar. It was a very special time for him. He was very proud and overwhelmed.
  • There is a book of Millar MacFadyen’s poetry in the museum collection at the Riverview Community Centre.
  • Millar was also a descendant of Thomas and Jane Beer. Their first daughter Mary Anne (Beer) married Archibald MacFadyen. Their son John Archibald married Sarah Jane (Campbell), and their son was Archibald Millar. Refer to lineage on http://www.janedyment.ca, click here.
  • Both Joanne (MacFadyen) Turner and Jane Dyment who are members of our History Committee are descendants of Mary Anne (Beer) and Archibald MacFadyen. Joanne (MacFadyen) Turner is a descendant of Millar’s older brother Norman, making Millar her great-uncle.
  • Millar was Roger Younker’s grandfather. Roger was the News Anchor for CBC Charlottetown’s Compass program for many years.
Millar's childhood homestead, Bannockburn Road

Millar’s childhood homestead, Bannockburn Road

  • Millar’s home place was on property now owned by the Dixon family on the Bannockburn Road, just a 1/4 mile past the Kingston/Clyde River border on the right-hand side. The house is no longer there.
  • Millar’s mother’s obituary stated she “was taken suddenly ill with heart trouble.” Her children were Norman, Millar, Donald (Eric) (died of T.B. at 21 years old), Margaret (Florence), Jeannette and Alexandrena. Another of her daughters predeceased her, Rebecca Louise at 7 months, 13 days. She was the daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Donald E. Campbell of Darlington. She is buried in the Clyde River Presbyterian Cemetery. More details on obituary and genealogy at www.janedyment.ca, click here.
  • When Millar’s grandparents (Campbell’s) moved to Charlottetown, they lived in a house at the corner of Kirkwood and University Avenue which is now the location of Shopper’s Drug Mart. The home was referred to as Argyle Cottage.

Read Full Post »

For those of us who attended Clyde River School in the late 60s-70s, we cannot let this week go by without honouring our music teacher Phyllis Newman who passed away at the age of 94. Her in memoriam highlights what an extraordinary woman she was.

Phyllis spent most of her life involved with music. She started playing piano at an early age and served as organist and choir director for over six decades at various churches including Cornwall, New Dominion, Kingston and Park Royal United Churches. In the days of one and two room rural schools, she worked as a traveling music teacher. She is remembered for organizing and participating in school and church concerts. She volunteered her talents for many charitable and fund raising efforts and played at numerous nursing and seniors’ homes. In the days before dial telephones, Phyllis operated the New Haven rural telephone exchange for The Island Telephone Co. for many years out of her home in New Haven. Phyllis and Stanley operated a tourist home and motel in New Haven for twenty years.

To the students at Clyde River School, she was Mrs. Newman, and when she arrived for music class, we did as we were told. We lined up in rows according to height and began with our scales “do re me fa so la ti do”.

With Mrs. Newman, music was not an optional, elective course; it was mandatory. We were there to learn how to sing, and sing we did, although it is possible that those who were vocally challenged learned young how to move their mouths to the music without making a sound. We prepared for upcoming school concerts held in the community hall just a short walk down the road. As the event date approached, we performed our final rehearsals in the hall…such an air of excitement among us as we summoned any God-given talent we had.

Mrs. Newman taught us how to prepare for a performance. Yes, she’d have to be strict to keep us on task and help us overcome any anxieties, but when I think back, she taught us some valuable life skills. We learned that there are times when we have to step outside our comfort zone, learn something new and stand in front of peers and community to perform. So, in order to do well (not embarrass ourselves too badly), we had to commit to the task, practice, play on the team, hold up our end, give it all we had, so on the day of the performance, we knew we had done our best. And our audience applauded us. Our parents breathed freely once again. These life skills are exactly the ones that drive people to succeed in life.

So if we have gone above and beyond at any point in our lives and we had Mrs. Newman as our music teacher in our early school years, she is one of the good people we can thank.

Read Full Post »

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


It all started on an occasion when school friends Annie Boyle, Donna Green and Carol Murray gathered together for one of their milestone birthday celebrations, where someone suggested that they invite a few more Clyde River School friends to a future get together.

In 2009, their larger reunion began at Top of the Park and then continued in 2010 at the Dundee and in 2011, 2013 and 2015 at the Charlottetown Hotel.

The group of friends, covering a range of ages, attended Clyde River School anywhere between 1945 and the early 1960s.

Some of their teachers included Rita (Cruwys) MacLean (1944-49), Shirley (MacDonald) Wood (1949-50), Joyce (Nicholson) MacPhee (1950-53), John Trowsdale (1953-54), Kay (MacFadyen) Morrison (1954-55), Ines (Gass) MacDonald (1954-55), Audrey (Frizzell) MacPhee (1955-56), Violet (Gillespie) Frizzell (1955-56), Elsie Hickox (1957-58), Theresa Donahue (1957-58), Winnie MacMillan (1959-60), Ida Deagle (1961-62), Anna MacLennan (1963-64) and Flossie Hyde (1964-66).

“We look forward to our times together. We don’t seem to talk about school days as much as what is going on in each other’s lives and families now,” says Carol Murray. “But I think maybe we will do that for our next get together.”

Editor’s note: I just came across this photo of a Clyde River School class when Joyce (Nicholson) MacPhee was a teacher. I notice a few familiar faces.

School class 2

 

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »