Pennsylvania and New England, United States of America
A collection of One-room School/Churches from the northeastern part of the United states. Teachers that taught in the one room, rural schools were very special people. During the winter months they would get to the school early to get a fire started in the potbelly stove, so the building would be warm for the students. On many occasions they would prepare a hot, noon meal on top of the stove, usually consisting of soup or stew of some kind. They took care of their students like a new mother hen would care for her newly hatched chicks; always looking out for their health and welfare.
A typical school day was 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., with morning and afternoon recesses of 15 minutes each and an hour period for lunch. The older students were given the responsibility of bringing in water, carrying in coal or wood for the stove. The younger students would be given responsibilities according to their size and gender such as cleaning the black board, taking the erasers outside for dusting plus other duties that they were capable of doing.
Transportation for children who lived too far to walk was often provided by horse-drawn kid hack or sulky, which could only travel a limited distance in a reasonable amount of time each morning and evening, or students might ride a horse, these being put out to pasture in an adjoining paddock during the day. In more recent times, students rode bicycles and may have even got a ride in a car like the one seen in my November image.
The school house was the center and focus for thousands of rural communities, hamlets and small towns. Often, town meetings, church services and picnics were also held there. Many of these small structures still survive today. Some of these one-room buildings have been abandoned or have other uses. Some have become museums and a few still survive today as churches or even as schools in some amish communities.