Remember Mrs. White? (part 2)

Mrs. White, our fifth grade teacher, ran a tight ship. She seemed as old as the hills, so it’s a good guess that she lived through the Great Depression.

Long before it was “fashionable” to “save trees”, Mrs. White made sure that paper was used on both sides before it was thrown out. Math homework each night was done on one side of the page. The next night, the back side of the page was used. Monday through Thursday there was Math homework. No homework on Fridays.

If for some reason you missed a day of class due to absence, you were to put the only-one-side-used paper on the pile on the radiator. If someone needed only one side of a paper, they were to take one out of the pile.

Speaking of absences, when we were out of school because of illness, our note from our parents would be displayed on the bulletin board. I think this was done to discourage us from missing school. I still remember one girl who was out because of “diarrhea.” I always made sure I proof-read my mother’s note before I brought it into school. I didn’t want any embarrassing illness made public knowledge.

For discipline, besides threatening with the hairbrush, there was the “check system.” For example, if someone was fooling around in class and not paying attention, they would get a checkmark next to their name. Three checks in one day, and there would be punishment. One such punishment involved being locked in the Music Room during lunch period. There were no windows in there. It was like a prison.

I remember hearing a rumor about one kid who was locked in during lunch. There was no bathroom facility available, and he really had to do a Number Two. So he used his plate from his lunch, and left a Number Two Surprise for Mrs. White when she came to let him out of jail.

4 thoughts on “Remember Mrs. White? (part 2)

  1. Oh wow–just when I think my school days were abusive, I hear yet another horror story! I have no sympathy for Mrs White–none at all. See you later!


      1. Mercifully, I’ve forgotten most of their names–and managed token forgiveness of them (ooh, that didn’t sound very saintly, did it?)!!


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