Do You Remember First Grade?

Remembrances of my childhood...

When I was six years old a whole new phase of life began for little Sammy. Although the purpose was to gain an education and I’m sure that was a worthy endeavor in and of itself, I’m just not sure I initially placed this ultimate goal in life as utmost in my thinking at such a tender age. Oh, I had been taught to share and to try and get along with others before entering school, but now, all of a sudden I found myself alone, with no parental supervision. It was a whole new ballgame for a growing youngster in which I was about to learn that it would be to my best advantage and interest if I learned to listen and obey other adults in addition to my own parents.

Do you remember your first grade in school?

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school days
school days

“Times were hard and money was tight”

Do you remember what you were taught in the first grade? We learned our abc’s and that 1 + 1 = 2. Heck, my brothers and sister taught me how to add and subtract up to 10, as well as my abc’s at home. I do remember taking a large towel to take a nap on each day and we played with wooden blocks with numbers and letters on them I recall. I also carried my lunch in a brown paper bag and purchased a small bottle of milk for recess and one for lunch for 8¢. If I took a dime to school, I was to bring two cents back home. That’s how I learned to add and subtract. If I didn’t have my two pennies when I got home from school, I went back along the same path looking for them or I’d better have a good story as to what happened. “Times were hard and money was tight,” my dad said during my first year of school in 1949-1950. I remember watching my parents count out change on the kitchen table each night making sure all four of us kids had lunch money or in my case, money for milk each day.

learning numbers
learning numbers

we had the same teacher all day long

Well, we didn’t start writing the very first day in the first grade, maybe the second six weeks or even later as I remember and we use those big pencils. Do you remember the pencils in first grade? The red ones that was as big around as your finger and the pencil sharpener had a special hole in it just to accommodate that unique writing instrument. The writing pads of Blue Horse paper had three horizontal lines in each row and one vertical line that was called the margin on the left side. The lines must have been an inch apart and when we were ‘doing our numbers or letters’, you could just get two of three per line- no, just kidding, but we wrote so large in the first grade, I surely used a lot of paper . And we had the same teacher all day long. None of this changing class stuff until we got to junior high school, seventh grade, now that was something else.

a pretty girl
a pretty girl

mom gave me a thrashin’

Miss Necessary was my 1st-grade teacher and she walked me home the very first day as I remember. I was showing out in front of the guys and I pulled the pigtails of this little girl I thought was so cute. She turned around and slapped my face and that shocked me so much I guess, I just slapped her back. Now the teacher saw the whole thing and when questioned as to why I slapped a girl, I told her that my dad had told me that if anyone hit me I was to hit them back. Since he never distinguished between a boy or a girl, I figured I had a right. Miss Necessary felt differently and walked me right over the hill in the back of the school to my home pinching my ear all the way. I found out quickly that my folks agreed with Miss Necessary and after she left, mom gave me a thrashin’ and when dad got home, I got another one.

© 2010 SamSonS

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Comments 13 comments

dahoglund profile image

dahoglund 6 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

i can't recall what was taught in what grade but the school was probably pretty musch like yours.

Happyboomernurse profile image

Happyboomernurse 6 years ago from South Carolina

It's good you were a quick learner. (smile)

I remember buying cartons of milk for snack time and feeling left out sometimes when I didn't have enough money to buy them.

Second grade was tough because I started it in one school, then moved twice during the year for a total of 3 different schools and teachers. What I remember most is that the 3rd school's curriculum required all second grade students to write script instead of printing and the new teacher told me to look at the alphabet letters posted above the blackboard and try my best to write the script version and connect the letters for the final exams. Fortunately I only had a few weeks before summer recess and was able to practice my penmenship during the summer.

samsons1 profile image

samsons1 6 years ago from Tennessee Author

*thanks dahoglund for your quick reply and comments...

*and thank you Happyboomernurse, for your visit and for sharing your enjoyable reminisce. Did you like milk? I ask because some of the kids would give me theirs even after they had paid for it because they didn't like milk...

Happyboomernurse profile image

Happyboomernurse 6 years ago from South Carolina

Ah, you must have been a charmer when you weren't pulling pig tails!

Loved milk as a child and still drink it, although I drink skim milk now, mostly in tea and oatmeal.

My grandparents used to get milk delivered to their home in glass bottles and it tasted fantastic because it was cold and high in fat. My cousin and I still reminisce about how great it tasted with the home made waffles that our grandmother made.

samsons1 profile image

samsons1 6 years ago from Tennessee Author

thanks Happyboomernurse for your gracious comments and for sharing your youthful reminisce. I remember hearing those glass bottles early in the mornings as our milkman delivered during the early morning hours of my childhood. I mentioned this milkman in an earlier hub. Glad you enjoy...

Dave Mathews profile image

Dave Mathews 6 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

About the only thing I remember about 1st. grade was recess breaks.

samsons1 profile image

samsons1 6 years ago from Tennessee Author

thanks Dave for your kind remarks...

lifegate profile image

lifegate 6 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA


Yes, I remember. I'm not sure I want to, but I do!

samsons1 profile image

samsons1 6 years ago from Tennessee Author

thanks lifegate for sharing your reminisce...

Tammy L profile image

Tammy L 6 years ago from Jacksonville, Texas

Yeah, Sam, I vaguely remember my first grade. My oldest sister had taught me to read and write before I was age 5. She enjoyed teaching me because I was such a fast learner. I didn't do any work my first year because I thought since I already knew it, I didn't have to work. I did get into trouble for using a standard pencil. I was used to using a standard pencil anyway and I hated the huge, fat pencils. I felt like I was trying to write with a telephone pole. The writing tablet used in the early 70s was "Big Chief". When it came to learning how to write, since I already knew how, I was asked to help the left handed kids in the class. My teacher was right handed and couldn't physically do it. I am left handed so it worked out great.

samsons1 profile image

samsons1 6 years ago from Tennessee Author

thanks TammyL for sharing your nice reminisce. I think it's fun to look back into our childhoods and remember all we can...

Brett.Tesol profile image

Brett.Tesol 5 years ago from Thailand

Nice story, and Man do you have one hell of a memory! I kind of wish that I could remember those early years too, but I find it hard to remember last week lol.

Socially SHARED, voted up, awesome, and funny. (Written with Dragon NaturallySpeaking)

samsons1 profile image

samsons1 5 years ago from Tennessee Author

Hey Brett, thanks so much for stopping by and commenting on my Hub, "Do You Remember First Grade?" My whole family comments on my ability to remember, and if you notice 90% of my articles are about my family and childhood. It just seems to come naturally.

Glad to see you are still using Dragon. I think it help me immensely with my sentence structure. Thanks again for your positive approval and ratings. Best to you my friend...

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