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We seem to have gotten somewhat past the Dutch wooden shoes hurdle, but many of the things written about Asia and other areas are equally out of date ...". 3
"Major changes have been introduced in the techniques for ascertaining what are the objectives aimed at by a school ..., 4
"'A Negro student has a constitutional right to an education equivalent to that offered by the State to students of other races
Page Make Freedom Ring
1 World Understanding in Elementary Schools
2 New Evaluative Instruments for Secondary Schools_- 4 Recent Federal Court Decisions Affecting Education
6 New Assistant to the Commissioner.
7 History in Facsimile..
7 Education Organizes for the Nation's Defense_
8 Featured in Higher Education
10 Organization of Education in the United States.
11 Bells Will Ring for United Nations Day
12 Citizenship Education by Air
13 Accent on Health..
13 The Office of Education—Its Services and Staff
14 10 Major Tasks for UNESCO
15 New Books and Pamphlets.
16 Selected Theses in Education
16 Educational Aids From Your Government. Inside back cover The Effects of Atomic Weapons..
"... Whether this struggle lasts 6 months, 5 years, or 25 years, America's schools and colleges will
. . . Come war, come peace, we dare not ignore the long leverage which the schools exert.'
SCHOOL LIFE is indexed in Reader's Guide to Periodical Literature, and in Education Index (Single copy price of SCHOOL LIFE-15 cenis)
... the best step in foreign policy during my entire tour of duty in public life ...
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Service Address all SCHOOL LIFE inquiries to the Chief, Information and Publications Service, Office of Education, Federal Security Agency.
Washington 25, D. C.
THE Office of Education was estab.
lished in 1867 “for the purpose of collecting such statistics and facts as shall show the condition and progress of education in the sev. eral States and Territories, and of dif. fusing such information respecting the organization and management of schools and school systems and methods of teaching, as shall aid the people of the United States in the establishment and maintenance of efficient school sys. tems, and otherwise promote the cause of education throughout the
World Understanding in Elementary Schools
by Wilhelmina Hill, Specialist for Social Science, Division of Elementary and Secondary Schools
CHOOLS OF TODAY must devote their Children of elementary grades can learn
If elementary children energies toward world understanding many things about the people of the world. studying about food, they are likely to be and cooperation as never before. The Their environment today often contains interested in and learn about the food they world situation with its misunderstandings, many elements which make such a study
many elements which make such a study themselves eat and about the food children barriers to communication, technology, avi- natural and within the scope of the chil- and adults eat in other lands. But the ation, and new destructive weapons makes dren's interests and concerns. Food, toys, children must not be left out so that boys this imperative.
newspapers, radio, television, foreign vis- and girls make just a study of people only. Herold C. Hunt, Chicago's Superintenditors, returned travelers, relatives, letters, Elementary social studies curricula offer ent of Schools, says, “The ability to get international exchanges, music, dance, numerous opportunities for teaching about along with people is the characteristic that stories, and art are some of the media by
stories, and art are some of the media by the peoples of the world. In one west coast merits greatest emphasis in all teaching to- which children have foreign contacts in school system each third grade studies one day. With the shrinking of space which has their own lives.
nationality group which has representatives been brought about by modern science and
Throughout elementary grades, the pupils in the culture pattern of its city. Hence in the consequent state in which we find our- show considerable interest in other children one school, the children may learn about selves of being neighbor to the world,' it regardless of where they live. Sometimes people of Italian and in another about becomes necessary to enlarge our horizon to they are not as interested in the adult affairs those of Swedish birth or ancestry. include world understanding in our efforts of a foreign country or region as their Many fourth-grade
suggest to develop this ability to get along with teachers or textbook writers might think studies of communities or regions in varipeople. It is an old adage which reminds desirable. Perhaps we should take a clue ous parts of the United States or abroad. us that we never knew a person we didn't from this, and make further effort to relate A good many sixth-grade programs provide like and, since we know that we get along subject matter about peoples and countries for the study of the people of the Americas with the people we like, we must include more closely to children's real interests and and others of people who live in various that concept of global understanding that peace may be maintained throughout the world.”
What is the role of the elementary school in this undertaking? Can children of primary and intermediate grades approach the problem of world understanding?
The answers lie in the maturity levels and needs of the children themselves. They can begin to learn cooperative ways of getting along with others from their first experiences at home and school. Effective skills in human relationships begin with the young and should develop as individuals broaden their scope of living.
The kind of experiences in human relationships that children have daily in school, home, and community provide the opportunities through which they may become cooperative individuals on a much broader scale. A democratic permissive atmosphere in which pupils and teacher plan, work, and evaluate their learning enterprises together is essential to this social de velopment of individuals. It is a character. istic of many modern elementary schools.
Denver, Colo., school children use both small and large globes to study world geography. Photograph It should be evident in all.
courtesy Denver Public Schools.
parts of the Eastern Hemisphere. Often stereotype Chinese child with the pigtail. and Bay City, Mich., public schools have seventh graders study peoples of the world We seem to have gotten somewhat past the issued excellent bulletins on ways in which with emphasis on either the geography or
Dutch wooden shoes hurdle, but many of United Nations and its various branches history of their regions or on both. In the things written about Asia and other may be included in the curriculum at the those systems where the curriculum doesn't areas are equally out of date.
various elementary levels. include regional studies in elementary One school superintendent, Evan Evans Some children's organizations, as Boy grades, there is a real opportunity for teach- of Winfield, Kans., was a member of the Scouts and Girl Scouts, have clubs and ing such topics or units as aviation, radio, European Flying Classroom last spring. members in other countries. These offer or housing from a world point of view, be- Prior to the trip, he was invited to visit ele. opportunities for children to participate diginning with the local and then widening mentary classes in his system and tell the
mentary classes in his system and tell the rectly in the programs of international orhorizons as far as the children are able children about the places he expected to go.
ganizations. to go.
The children became interested and began Pearl Wanamaker, President, National It is evident then that the elementary cur. to make plans to "go along.” They fol.
Council of Chief State School Officers and riculum offers excellent possibilities for de
lowed his itinerary closely on maps of Washington's State Superintendent of Pubveloping world understanding. The ques- Europe.
lic Instruction, emphasizes that, “The future tion now arises, How may such learning be
of free men rests largely with the United made meaningful and realistic?
States. The experience approach should be used SUGGESTIONS for teachers, supervi
“If our millions of American public whenever possible and appropriate. Chil- sors, principals, and others involved in school children are to be taught the techdren learn what they experience; they learn
curriculum development may be found niques and the responsibilities of demothat which they accept. Direct experiences
in World Understanding Begins With cratic action, this instruction must be part
Children, Office of Education Bulletin in the area of world understanding are pos.
of the school program every day of every
1949 No. 17, by Delia Goetz, Division sible in 1950. Modern "know-how” in
for of International Educational Relations.
child. Stress must be communication, transportation, interna. Copies are available from the Superin- placed upon our basic institutions as those tional exchanges, and teaching techniques
tendent of Documents, Washington 25, agencies which function for the good of all
D. C., price 15 cents. has made this possible.
people, and in which both children and
Another useful publication is The Children can learn skills in human rela.
adults share. School administrators and
Unesco Story, "a resource and action tionships and cooperative ways of living to
teachers, working with parents and commu
booklet for organizations and commugether in school and community. They can nities." Address your request for this
nity leaders, must inventory existing organengage in international exchanges of letters, 112-page report to The U. S. National izations for local, State, national, and interalbums, records, and art. Many can have
Commission for UNESCO, attention national cooperation, and then provide boys
UNESCO Relations Staff, Department the privilege of meeting a visitor or traveler
and girls with direct opportunity to share
of State, Washington 25, D. C. from a foreign land or some person in the
in these programs. community who has come from another
“There is no substitute for democratic accountry. All can have frequent contact
tion. Through our groups working to
From each of the ll countries visited, with other peoples through newspapers,
gether for the betterment of mankind, we the superintendent sent post cards, a piece magazines, books, films, radio, or television.
can give to our school children the opporof money, a few postage stamps, and when Some of these experiences may come
tunity to learn firsthand the rights and possible, maps and other materials related about in connection with social studies
privileges of a devoted, dynamic national to the geography of the country. A real units. Others will be just a part of the
and world citizenship. interest developed on the part of the stu
"In Washington State many elementary daily living in the school. Some will have
dents, who wondered when the next mail to do with music and dance, and others with
schools teach specific units on the UN and would come and checked to see how long it
UNESCO. Units include elementary reliterature and creative drama. took the air-mail post cards to arrive after
search, committee and class discussions, imBy no means should reading and study being mailed. It was generally conceded be neglected in such an experience ap
personations and dramatizations pertaining by the teachers and by the parents that there
to the UN structure, functions, and agencies. proach. But the study will take on greater
had been a greater interest in the study of meaning because it is related to living, to
Outgrowing pupil projects, such as sending European geography than there had been the child's social environment.
friendship letters, making flags of UN nafor many years. Distances became more
tions. keeping scrapbooks of UNESCO A plea is in order here for more accurate real, and economic and social conditions
stories, and affiliating with elementary and realistic reading and pictorial matewere better understood.
schools abroad are frequent." rials concerning the world's people. It is What can be done about teaching ele
Because of the urgency for improving hoped that persons who select such matementary school children about organiza
world relations in this school year of 1950rials will try to obtain those which show tions for international cooperation? A
51, the development of world understandhow people live in other parts of the world great deal is being done through participa
ing should rank high on the priority list of today rather than how they lived 10 or 20 tion in the various exchanges of the Junior
those responsible for developing school years before the last World War. Foreign Red Cross. Less is being accomplished
programs. Let each of us face the question, visitors are often amazed to see how the life with regard to l'nited Nations and its spe- “What is our school system doing about of their countries is pictured in some of our cialized agencies, such as UNESCO and world understanding in the elementary reading materials. An example is the FAO. The New York City, St. Paul, Minn., schools?