Thursday, December 20, 2012

Christmas Memories

December 1958
Second-grade Christmas party
Mrs. Blair's classroom
My mother took this photo of my second-grade Christmas party. I'm the one wearing the white top directly in front of the teacher. I think the four students around the teacher are helping to distribute gifts.

I remember playing Heads Up, Seven Up during elementary classroom parties. (Do you remember playing that game?) At Christmas, we also sang carols, had special treats, and exchanged an inexpensive gift with the person whose name we had drawn earlier.

From first to sixth grades, we made special Christmas gifts for our parents. Some gifts I remember making and giving - a bread board in the shape of a pig, and a wooden serving tray with rope handles (the varnish was still tacky when I took it home), a plate with a specially painted edge, and a plaster plate with my hand-print.

Mrs. Blair's classroom was in the two-story, brick building built in 1940 or 1941 and directly to south of the high school building. Mrs. Blair's room was located on the south side of the ground floor. Next door was Miss Schaper's first-grade classroom. Mrs. Dewey's third-grade classroom was across the hallway and next to the girls' bathroom (the boy's bathroom was around the corner next to the stairs. Mrs. Mitchell (fourth-grade), Mrs. Gordon (fifth-grade), Mrs. Bond (sixth-grade), a teacher's work room and a paper closet were located on the second story. The playground, which was outside the first and second-grade classrooms, was between the school and the road that led to Mrs. Maxey's house.
Back: J. Hippe, R. Six, M. Hornecker, C. Ray, C. Rohn, T. Goodwin.
Middle: S. Jarnagin, R. White, N. Stearns, B. Gies, B. Fabrizius,
P. Hansen, Mrs. Blair. Front: J. Willman, J. Adams, C. Wempen,
M. Williams, R. Burnett, G. Taylor, S. Jensen.

Ten years later, I received my high school diploma with four of
these classmates : C. Rohn, R. White, M. Williams, and G. Taylor
Additional information:

In the mid to late 50s, Mrs. Blair lived on the farm north of Pavillion that my brother leased in the 60s and purchased in 1971. I wrote about that farm here.

Note that the photo at the beginning of this post was printed in August 1959. It was common for film to be in the camera a long time or for the exposed film to be tossed in a drawer until it was discovered and sent for processing. Nearly all the film was mailed to a processor in Nebraska. I don't remember getting film developed locally until the late 60s or early 70s.


  1. Yes, I remember that game. In fact, my memories of elementary school are very much the same as yours. My dad still has one of the gifts I made for him in second grade. It's a marble pyramid paperweight. I still remember gluing it all together and how proud I was to give it to him.

  2. It sounds like your elementary years were a lot like mine. I didn't stay in the same school district for high school though. I moved after jr. high and then moved again in my senior year.

    So, I really didn't know the kids I graduated with.

    The fun thing is I DID get back in touch with a few elementary friends through Facebook. We've gotten together twice and have had a wonderful time.

  3. Oh I used to play "Heads Up Seven Up" when I was little! It is a popular summer camp game! Great photos, they are very fun to see.

  4. What great memories! Thanks for sharing them. I'm lucky to still be friends with three girls from grade school, and of course, I'm married to my 3rd grade sweetheart and still see a lot of our classmates around town.

    I don't think I'm familiar with that game though...

  5. awww. YOu look so cute.

    I dont know Heads up Seven UP either

  6. What great memories from school. You really are keeping your brain alive and active remember everything including the teacher and where he class was located. I do remember making things for holiday gifts and even through about 4th grade my oldest daughter was still making holiday items at school. g

  7. Oh, cute pictures. Your class started out with a few more numbers than the group with which you graduated. I remember most of them. We played Heads Up Seven Up a few times.

  8. Your school pictures are so cute! It is fun to compare with the 2nd graders that I read to and work with in the 2nd grade now. You have a great memory.
    Rebel Follower

  9. I loved our school Christmas parties. We would all gather in the auditorium and sing carols after the classroom party and head home with such joy in our hearts. My heart aches for kids today who miss all that.

  10. Oh Nancy...What wonderful pictures... I wasn't too far behind you in school... Those pictures look sooo familiar!! AND YES we played that game in school!!! I had totally forgot about it...thanks for the great memories you brought back!!


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