York Town Square

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York County’s former Teachers’ Institutes: ‘Head train the hand. Hand train the head’

Participants in the York County, Pa. Teachers’ Institute in the 1928-1929 school year received this notebook to write down insights gained in these city and county training sessions. (See additional photo below.) Also of interest: One-room school reunions preserve educational culture of thousands of York countians and Former Temple head product of York County schools and All school days category posts from the start..

The annual Teachers’ Institute for York County city and county teachers was a longtime rite of summer and fall.
With this multi-day in-service program for teachers came a booklet, courtesy of Dan Meckley’s collection. The black-and-white notebook raises several interesting items of historical note.
First, the institute has separate dates for York City teachers and county teachers.
Part of the reason for this might have been relevant instruction for grade-level classrooms in the city versus country one or two-room schools in which all grades were grouped.
Advertisers were eager to get their messages to the recipients of the notebooks, teachers from the three-corners of York County… .

Advertisers, such as this North George Street optometrist, underwrote the cost of the Teachers’ Institute notebook.
Some businesses, actually very few, advertising in the notebook are still operating: John H. Myers of his namesake company was running for U.S. Congress that year. Edward Reineberg operated a shoe store at 19 S. George St. in York. Dallastown’s Glatfelter Furniture was in there, also advertising the W.F. Glatfelter Funeral Home, where “cars stop at the door.”
But the best part of the notebook are the notes, penciled in by an unknown notetaker.
The notes give an indication of the briefings educators of the day received:

– “Clothe your thoughts in words. Key to language work is communication.”
– “Knowledge is bridging the chasm from the known to the unknown.”
– “Head train the hand. Hand train the head.”
– “Home should have a library. Stories appropriate for child’s life.”
– From C. Alfonso Smith presentation: “Ideas are like a ladder lying on ground. Ideals are like a ladder reaching toward heaven.”
– Also from Smith: “The great job of great nation is to manufacture great souls of a good quality.”

Rich stuff.
Relevant today, too.