I give thought to my years at Glenview, my mind
slips so far back ~ back beyond a marriage of
56 years, adult children and grandchildren,
the houses that became homes, global travels,
decades of volunteer work ~ back, back in time
~ falling in love, WW II, happy college years,
great high school times ~ and still reaching
back even more ~ ah, there it is, so firmly
fixed in memory ~ Glenview, and all the years
of learning to love learning. That was the beginning.
Each day began with a salute to the Flag. Next,
we sat quietly with palms on desk, fingers spread,
for hygiene inspection ~ clean hair, ears, teeth,
fingernails, fresh clothing. Really! At mid-morning
there were graham crackers and milk. Recess
freed us to the playground to swing, climb the
monkey bars, or our favorite, "boys-chase-the-girls"
(and we could hardly wait to be caught!).
Books were treated with loving and respected
care. To this day, I cannot open a book and
"break-the-back." I still can make
a manila corner for a treasured binding. A life-long
love for paper, pencils, and binders was instilled.
Lead me to school supplies and make my day!
Discipline seemed a small problem because no
one opted for the punishment. I can still feel
the sharp sting of a slap on my leg for being
caught talking in class! Boys were dispatched
to "Mr. Starr's office" (the principal)
for a swipe of a leather belt on their behind.
Many walked home for a hot lunch, or a bag lunch
was taken on the playground and traded or shared.
Egg salad sandwiches still smell like school
Girls always wore dresses, socks, leather shoes,
and boys wore cotton button-up shirts, long
pants, and scuffed shoes. My mother sewed and
made my colorful cotton dresses with matching
bloomers; a pocket was sewn on the bloomers
to hold a cloth handkerchief, which in turn,
had a nickel tied into a corner. The nickel
paid for mild or orange juice. In summer the
dresses were sleeveless A-line little garments.
One day as I was hanging upside down on the
bars, my dress slipped over my head and into
a mound on the ground. 50 years later at a high
school reunion a former Glenview "boy"
told my husband that he had seen me "topless"!
In the spring, we practiced folk dancing for
weeks, preparing for May Day and the tradition
of braiding the ribbons around the May pole.
It was always the prettiest girl who was chosen
for May Queen, and to this day I feel regret
at missing that honor!
one time, the school had a great treat for us
~ the showing of the silent movie of "Peter
Pan." Classes were forgotten as we sat
in our party clothes, entranced by the awesome
event. Our class had preferred seating in the
balcony (no longer there).
We memorized everything ~ poetry, spelling lists,
multiplication tables, and diagramed perfect
sentences down to the last verb! Spelling bees
were great fun and competition was intense!
We learned to play the piano on paper keyboards
spread across our desks ~ with parent-attended
recitals in the auditorium as we struggled with
a real piano! Reading music and singing written
notes solo was pure agony, especially for those
who were musically and tone impaired!
Tuesdays were art days and supplies were counted
out by row monitors. Colored paper, crayons,
watercolors, and paste - all used for pictures
or making soldier hats, Easter baskets or Christmas
P.E. majors at local college were playground
directors after school and Saturdays. We called
them "Direct" as in "Hey, Direct,
may I check out a baseball mitt?" Boys
had football teams and played in the lower field,
which was just plain dirt. Girls chanted endless
rhymes as they jumped rope or played jacks,
hopscotch, or paddleball.
Most teachers were held in affection and respect,
and we tried our best to please. I never was
bored because learning was so exciting from
the beginning. It was assumed that following
high school we would continue into college,
i.e. "Higher Learning!" and I would
guess that most of us did that.
We were privileged children because we were
taught that knowledge was wealth, truth meant
honor and respect, creativity and hard work
meant progress. We are grateful to the dedicated
teachers who instructed us with a loving firmness.
It was those teachers whom we remember and thank
for these joyful beginnings.
Wonderful Glenview School
thanks to Bette Tunney,
student in Glenview's first 1st grade class,
for sharing these memories.