Pupils in a One-Room School

Rural schools like Cheam View were ungraded, and classes consisted of pupils ranging from about seven to sixteen years of age, and working at different educational levels, from grade one to grade eight. The "social distance" between teachers and pupils in rural schools was not great; often, the teacher was but a few years older than her pupils and in many communities she boarded with one of the local families.

The close relations between teachers and pupils may explain why people who attended rural schools in the 1930s and 1940s have such vivid -- and generally, fond -- memories of their teachers.

This picture of the teacher at Cheam View playing baseball with her students was most certainly "staged," but the social conditions it depicts may have been characteristic of many rural schools.

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