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Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Fifty years on

Yesterday was the first meeting of the year for the local history society, and it was so suitable for January, looking back and forward. The Society was founded 50 years ago, 1962, so after the food, readings from the local paper for 1962 we had a quiz about events in 1962, and then each decade after that, with just one question for 2002.

Coincidentally I have my diary for 1962, it is a Boots scribbling diary, foolscap size with all sorts of information at the front. I have learnt today that a Hawker's Annual Licence costs £2 and expires March 31st.
There is a useful table showing amount of income per calendar month, week and day, at any sum per annum. The highest amount per annum shown is £10,000.

Wednesday 10th January was a school day, my entries about school  includes "Assembly. Did not last long.   Had Algebra in Science 3. Did ordinary exercises. Had French conversation and dictation. Liver for dinner. Miss D*******n has not marked exams. Started Switzerland. Nor had Mrs C*****y marked them. Did soil. Dull!"

Weather was coldish, sunny, fairly windy, rained at night.

I am aware how childish it seems, yet legally then I could have left school at the end of the previous term. In fact, some girls did, barely 15 years old, no qualifications yet there was plenty of work available. Sometimes I wonder if the extended academic world is the right one for everyone, perhaps more old fashioned day release, learning by Nellie, an emphasis on doing rather than acquiring skills would suit more than encouraging so many into higher education. My mother used to say that we should be qualified in 'something' so we could earn our living. My sister turned out to be very good at shorthand typing, as you may know mine was the world of librarianship. Handling, finding, disseminating information, still enjoy learning some thing new, even if it is 50 years out of date.

Where the entries are interesting I may include extracts from diary throughout the year, but there will be a limit to my views on the lessons.

Last Saturday  we popped over to Kew Gardens, so now I can show you Ian's photos, so cheering to see the snowdrops near the Orangery. Good weather for a brisk walk and some fresh air.

That's all folks, back sometime.


  1. At our high school, there is a programme of suitable learning for pupils who aren't academic - we have a specialist, fully equipped skills centre where they teach mechanics, engineering, hairdressing, construction (bricklaying, carpentry and so on) and catering to A level equivalent level. In addition, pupils who can't cope with a full school timetable get work experience for a day or two a week with local businesses. There's also subjects like Travel and Tourism and Outdoor Education which are practically based so that the students can see what they're doing the theoretical work for. EG, for T&T they might lay on a school function and have to work out costings, publicity, marketing and so on.

    Birds were singing in their spring voices today. They need to wait a bit!

  2. PixieMum, I doubt any schoolgirl comments from me would have sounded any more mature at that age. We were so very young for 15....

    My husband (who worked in education) always said that it would have been better to lower the school entry age than raise the leaving age, so as to identify the children with potential problems or unsupportive home backgrounds as early as possible.

  3. Nice to see the snowdrops.

    I am sure that, today, the diary of a 15 year old school girl would read rather differently. Life has changed enormously over the last 50 years ago.

  4. Good morning, PixieMum. Just a quick note to say that I hope you don’t mind, but I’ve chosen you as one of my five blogs for the Liebster Blog award. If you’d like to drop by and pick it up, you can copy the image direct from my post. I hope lots of people enjoy finding your blog.

  5. Dear PixieMum,
    I've arrived here from Perpetua's blog. Congratulations on winning her award yesterday. Your posting today interested me because I can see real differences between the educational system in England and the one here in the States. So many of our students drop out. We need a major overhaul of education but some educators and administrators put up obstacles to that. We forget to think of what the children and young people need and how best to teach them. Thanks for getting me thinking.