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ERIC Number: ED392563
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1918
Reference Count: N/A
The Rural School from Within.
Kirkpatrick, Marion G.
Written in 1917, this book relates the author's experience as a beginning teacher in rural Kansas. The purpose of the book was to provide preservice teachers an overview of educational practices in rural schools at that time. In addition, educational policies are proposed that specifically aim to improve rural schools. The author was barely 20 years old with no teaching experience when he was assigned to a rural school in Kansas. Upon inspection of the school, he was surprised to find there were no crayons, erasers, maps, or other supplies. He soon realized that the community had high expectations for him both as a teacher and as a member of the community. The school was an integral part of the rural community and served as the social center, with such activities as religious worship, singing schools, literary societies, spelling schools, and occasional parties. The author discusses the loneliness he experienced, and the relationships he had with students, with the school board, with parents, and with the community. He relates his own experiences in disciplining students, teaching various subjects, and learning to respect and value the rural way of life. Several chapters describe teaching methods for basic subject areas and also offer strategies for integrating music, stories, and plays into the curriculum. Several concluding suggestions are offered for improving rural schools, one of which involves school consolidation. It is proposed that rural schools could only meet higher expectations and objectives by having larger school units and recruiting better prepared teachers. Additionally, consolidated schools could offer more comprehensive courses of study, thus preparing students to work in the business community. (LP)
Descriptors: Beginning Teachers, Boards of Education, Classroom Techniques, Curriculum, Discipline, Educational History, Educational Improvement, Educational Practices, Elementary Secondary Education, Higher Education, Personal Narratives, Preservice Teacher Education, Rural Areas, Rural Schools, School Community Relationship, School Role, Teacher Role, Teaching Conditions, Teaching Experience
Publication Type: Books; Historical Materials
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Kansas; Rural Culture
Note: Xerox copy of original book, reproduced two pages per landscape pages. This book is cited by Mary Phillips Manke in her article "The Rural Teacher in the Early 1900's" (EJ 478 228) as a classic of rural education literature; see also RC 020 215-218, 435, 451-452, 470.