Saturday, October 29, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History - Elementary School

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2011) that invite genealogists and others to record memories and insights about their own lives for future descendants. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your memories on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.
  • Week 44. Elementary School. Describe your grammar/elementary school (or schools). Were they big or small? Are any of these schools still in existence today? If so, how have they changed since you went there?

I had three elementary schools.  For Kindergarten, I attended Foley Elementary in Foley, Benton County, Minnesota.  My teacher was Sandy Traverse, and she is now well retired.  I had a long bus ride for this school, as the population of that area is largely rural farm families, and I lived miles away in the country on a farm.  The school is still there, though I haven't been in it decades.  The one interesting thing I remember from this school is that every year there is a 500 mile snowmobile race through Minnesota, and the year I was there, the race ran right behind the school, and we got to watch them go past.

 My next school was Central Elementary in St. Cloud, Minnesota.  I attended this school for four years, first through fourth grades.  There were two classes of each grade, each class about 22-25 students.  The school started out as the only school in St. Cloud, then became the High School, then eventually down to an Elementary School.  Due to shifting demographics and budgetary concerns, the school was closed at the end of the 1975-76 school year.  I still have my yearbook, produced only that year as a good-bye for the school.  The building subsequently re-opened as the Area Learning Center, an alternative school for students with difficulty dealing with regular school curricula and operating environments.  That lasted for several years, then the school district sold the building to become the new City Hall when the city outgrew the existing structure.  It remains City Hall to this day, and has been much renovated and remodeled, but the stairway railings are still the same as when I attended school there.

For fifth and sixth grades, I moved to Lincoln Elementary, also in St. Cloud.  This school building is still there, and still an elementary school.  I recently had opportunity to attend an academic event there for my daughter, and it was interesting to see how my perception has changed.  The building seems much smaller than it did when I was a student.  Also, there have been some modifications to the building, additions and changes that were disorienting.

This and all other articles on this blog are © copyright 2011 by Daniel G. Dillman