Twentieth-Century Music Education: Early American Schools and the phonograph

Veronica I. Ent, 1-16

  • Prior to the introduction of the phonograph, music education was rare. It relied on the vocal and instrumental abilities of the teacher, and few had vocal and instrumental lessons. Early accounts mention the importance of a teacher’s ability to play the reed organ and describe how superintendents sought qualified music teachers. Later, the emphasis changed from the song-based approach to an appreciation-of-music approach. Professor Ent argues that the replication of sound changed the musician-based approach to a recorded-music phenomenon.

  • Key words:  phonograph, music education, song-based approach, appreciation-of-music approach, Frances Elliot Clark, Charles A. Fullerton, Schoolhouse Victor, rhythm, rural

A Practical Approach to Teaching Agriculture: A Review of Textbooks, 1905-1915

 Jason Brent Ellis and Carla Abreu-Ellis, 17-32

  • In this article, Professors Ellis and Abreu-Ellis focus on student-centered learning as exemplified in a sample of agriculture textbooks published in the early twentieth century. The authors do not presume that the instructional methods in the textbooks were actually employed in country schools but that the texts revealed how authors hoped country school teachers would use the methods in their classrooms. Student- and teacher-centered methods are compared and contrasted.

  • Key words:  teacher-centered instruction, student-centered learning, agriculture textbooks, country school teachers, practical applications, science, agriculture and mechanic arts, Hatch Act, Morrill Act 

School Consolidation in Maritime Canada: The Educational Legacy of Edgar L. Morphet and his disciples

Paul W. Bennett, 33-47

  • According to Professor Bennett, American “educrats” like Edgar L. Morphet and his disciples contributed to the consolidation movement in Canada. This historical analysis reveals much about large-scale consolidation by comparing the reform movement in three Maritime Canadian provinces. The study is useful to anyone who wonders how consolidation occurred in two different North American countries and the role of country schools in those developments.

  • Key words:  educrats, Edgar L. Morphet, consolidation movement, Maritime provinces, educational administration, centralization, Antigonish County, bigger is better, rural resistance 

Learning to Teach in the Countryside: Marion Gee (1928-2015)

Steven Grineski, 48-62

  • The biography of Marion Gee (1928-2015) traces her development as a rural educator. Her preparation included early schooling in a Minnesota one-room school, coursework in a nationally recognized rural teacher education program, and student teaching in a rural school. Her program included immersion in the community life surrounding the rural school and close relationships among student teachers, supervising teachers, and community members. Professor Grineski’s biography is useful for teacher educators who want to develop a deeper understanding of the varied ways rural teachers might develop professionally and socially.

  • Keywords: Marion Gee, rural teacher, one-room school, rural teacher education program, Moorhead State Teachers College, supervising teachers, community-school partnerships, Mabel Carney

Location, Location, Location: The Placement of Restored Country schools with implications for their longevity

Sandra Kessler Host and Lucy Townsend, 63-84

  • Sandra Kessler Host has located 220 historic country schools in Iowa. In many cases, an enthusiastic community was inspired to restore a schoolhouse for the 1996 celebration of 150 years of statehood. Today, some schools continue to attract visitors while others are largely neglected. To increase the likelihood that people will continue to patronize these restored schools, museum leaders need to develop strategies to build and cultivate community engagement, especially among persons who are not yet elderly. A number of factors are at play in building support. This study focuses on a country school’s location as an important factor in its longevity.

  • Keywords: country schools, restored schoolhouse, museum leaders, community engagement, building support, location, community, school-museum longevity, appendix, museum longevity