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About Omaha daily bee. (Omaha [Neb.]) 187?-1922 | View Entire Issue (Nov. 12, 1905)
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Fhe Omaha Illustrated Bee
Entered Second Class at Omaha Postoffice Published Weekly by The Bee Publishing Co. Subscription, $2.50 Per Year.
NOVEMBER 12, 1905.
Play Side of Our Most Wonderful Modern Public School System
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Did you ever hear of the fairies
; who dwell
In the beautiful City of No
Well, if not, listen and I shall
Each one of you how to go
; .there; . .
Right up the counterpane road
Till you come to a gateway;
you're sure to know
This place, for three fairies
stand there, in a row,
And guard the City of No
pr.AT OF VARIOUS SORTS OCCUPIES THE BOT WHEN AT UBERTT DURING RECESS.
The cherished memories of happy childhood hours are al
ways among the brightest pages of the book of life. They are
never effaced and never superseded, no matter how rich in experi
ence the .subsequent career may afterward prove, to be.
1 . '. 'II II I I II ' in i n L II i I in I
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IN I.Tn? AT TTTf! SAUNDHTRS BCHOOTj, WATTTNO FOR THB WORD TO ENTBH
The ancient proverb that "All work and no play makes Jack
a dull boy," holds as good today as it ever did. The play period
is as important a part of the school curriculum as are the required
lessons in the subjects taught in the class room.
KINTEROARTNERS AT THE SAUND
. ER8 SCHOOL.
' If you want to see a pretty
picture, just stop somewhere so
you can be unobserved, and yet
watch the children at play in
thr bcho!3l yard before lessons
begin or during the recess hour.
Howhere else is to be found so
much whole-souled enjoyment.
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RUSH AT FRANKLIN SCHOOL- WHEN THE
Here we go round the mulberry bnsh.
The mulberry bush,' the mulberry bush,
Hero we go round the mulberry bush
On a cold and frosty morning.
1 HATEVER the yours may have revealed for those of us who
are today bearing the' brunt of the world's work and are In
the heut of the fray, It Is not bard to hark back to those
. days spent in the school yard. Whatever may have been
our lot since, those happy and care-free days will ever loom up with a
luster peculiarly their own. Through storm and calm, in the after
years the days passed in the school yard remain like a everlasting
flower in the rose garden of life. . With the. poet we are wont to sing,
as we watch the gossamy clouds of our cigar smoke, "Backward, Turn
Backward. Oh Time, in Your Flight."
Many of our tenderest recollections of childhood cluster aronnd
those halcyon days, where we played wlth all the enthusiasm of child
hood tops, marbles, leap frog, hop scotch, crack-the-whlp, tag, jacks,
lilile-and-set'k and many other games which afterward had their coun
terparts in the arena of man's estate. Gone beyond recall are the days
when we reluctantly stopped in the'mlddle of an interesting game and
Und up to march Into the school room, panting and puffing and, those
of us of the sex that plays the rougher games, with barked shins and
sore knuckles. v
The sight of a group of boys and girls nappy at play on a school
ground has been a scene to conjure with ever since Chris Columbus
came to this country. Whether it be on the commodious campus of the
district school or the more restricted quarters of the city school, one
common quality prevails the enthusiasm and' freedom of chtldhood,
to which the world always bows in obedience.
Thousands on the Playgrounds
The boy and girl of the school yard are known all over the length
and breadth of the land Neither parallels, meridians, politics, religion
nor nationality affects their status on the school playground. Omaha
has 16,000 little folks who make the welkin ring five days of every
school week on the playgrounds of the public schools. A visit to some
of the schools just before the mornlug or afternoon sessions, or during
the recesses, would prove a sure cure for that languid feeling.
Over at the Pacific street school, where 553 pupils are enrolled, a
representative gathering of young Americans were seen enjoying
themselves on the playground the other day. The youngsters were
playing what might be termed the "between season" games, as this
is about the time of the year between the regular summer games and
the wluter sport. It was learned from some of the older teachers
that school sports have not changed materially in the crucible of time.
There have been some modifications in the old games and new ones
have been Introduced, but In the main the old reliable games are still
Games Go in Cycles
"The games of the schoolyard go around the year In a cycle with
the seasons," remarked Principal McCarthy of the Pacific school the
The first breath of spring brings out the marbles and tops. Many
a boy has felt the first flutb of victory or learned the first lesson of
accepting defeat with resignation over a game of marbles or tops. The
elements of speculation' and skill enter particularly into these games
because the boys still play "keeps," just like the older boys do on the
bourd of trade. The system of playing marbles and tops for keeps
has never been eradicated from the schools. Pedagogues have wisely
declared' that playing marbles and tops for -keeps is a neceKsary evil
which, if prohibited, woald ttioen some boys would play with the
thought they .were decsirtef th . teachers when they kept the spoils
of the gam. So the "evil" la regulated.
Not long ago a small boy with large tears wit to his teacher and
reported the loss o( all bis in riles whicb were won by older boys. It
was beyond the kea of the small boy why the older boys hould retain
ASSEMBLYBEtX.-RINQS, . ' ' ' - .- 1
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his glassies, chinas, potters and the rest of bis assortment of "nigs" his
Uncle Rudolph staked him. to a few. days before on the occasion of the
seventh anniversary of his birthday.- iThe teacher "kindly 'placed her
arm around the. boy's neck and wiped away his tears, while the older
boys peeked around a comer of the school . housed giggled . and rattled
their nierbles. The teacher called one of ;the older rboys over to her,
and asked for an explanation. - . '
"Well, Willie said he would play -for keeps, and we won. his mar-'
bles," was the reply of the older boy. . ....., ' .- - .
. , Willie Learned Jlis Lesson-
' ' ' ' .'''
A new. day dawned , for .Willie.'. He then knew-what it meant to
play keeps, and be practiced assiduously every, day 611 the quiet, until
one day he proudly walked up to the older boys and informed, them
he wanted to play keeps. He won all the marbles the older boys had
and then gave; each back six ,wlth. which to.begin, life anew.
The boys still play marbles with grades from the. poorest . clay
variety to the beautiful agates costing 10 "cents' and upward each.
.GIRLS AT FRANKLIN SCHOOL IN LINE WONDER AT THB PHOTOGRAPHER.
Many of the boy qualities are manifested at the marble ring; in fact,
the life of the average boy is oftimes epitomized in a game of -marbles.
As for the other games, they are as varied as the game of real life
and are played byithe little folks with as much zeal. Tops, one of the
oldest in the category, Is still as popular as ever. The boy who can
manipulate a top with dexterity Is always a cynosure In the eyes of
his fellow schoolmates, and usually is a boy who will succeed at most
anything. Then there are such games as base and foot ball, bull-in-the-ring,
hop scotch, hop, step-and-jump, spot . jack, crack the whip,
mum bly peg, jacks, hoops, ring around, tag, hide-and-seek,- pussy wants
a 'corner, leap frog, fox and geese, and so on down the line. In the
: outer schools of the city, where the yards are larger, scrub games of
' base ball are common, while-catch has to be substituted where the
grounds are smaller.
Playgrounds are Small
.Excluding the public schools in the outer parts of the city, the
playgrounds are geuerally too small for the enrollment This is strik
ingly true in some instances. Fortunately the pupils at the Pacific
Story About Grant Before He Obtained Greatness
'niLE I was in Denver last mouth Major John Davidson told
me a story about General Grant's service as a deputy sheriff
at Prairie du Chien, Wis., in 180. Davidson lived in Prairie
du Chien at that time. . He is now a resident of Junction
"A merchant named Am men encountered financial troubles and
bis store was closed.
"Among those Ammen owed was the firm of Grant & Co. of Ga
lena, 111.," said Major Davidson, "the bead of the .firm being U. 8.
Grant's father. As soon as the Galena firm heard that the store was
closed Grant, then 'captain,' was sent to Prairie du Chien to look Into
the matter. Reaching there he learned that Mr. Ammen had armed
himself with a shotgun, taken a stand in the store, and let it be known
that he would shoot down any man who entered the place.
"Everybody In town was excited over the situation, and when
Captain Grant arrived it was predicted that he would not risk his life
In an attempt to enter the place of business.
"A lot of us young fellows decided to see the whole show. We
stood In the street iu front of the luw office of O. B. Thomas (afterward
a captain In a Wisconsin regiment, and then in congress, where he had
been four or five years), while the former regular captain reinforced
himself with the required legal papers. That done, we followed him
to the sheriff's office, and when the sheriff, Lawyer Thomas and Cap
tain Grant started for the store, where we were sure somebody
would be killed, we followed at a respectful distance and closed- In
when the store was reached
"The sheriff commanded Atnnien to open the. door.
44 'I will not open the door ,and I will kill you or any of your crowd
If you force your way Into the building,' was Ammen's reply. '
. "The sheriff said the old man was desperate and .wuuld'be pretty
sure to kill some one. ",,','.-
"There was hesitancy upon the part of the sheriff, whereupon Grant
quietly said: 'If you dou't waul to risk it,' make me a deputy and I
will try it.' '
"That was done. Our gang crowded up closer to the door.
"As an officer of the law, -Mr. Ammen, I command you to open
this door,' said the newly made deputy sheriff.
" 'I refuse, and again warn you and your crowd that death awaits
the man who breaks Into thU store.'
"Captain Grant stepped back a couple of yards, and, springing for
ward, planted both feet against the door, hurling Jt. from its hinges.
"There trfe old merchant steod. shotgun la hand, but b seemed to
be daaed. Captain Grant walked past him and proceeded direct to the
offie, at the other end of the store, the old man following, carrying his
gun In his right baud. At the office Captain Grant removed bis hat,
bung it up, and, turning to the merchant, said: 'Mr. Ammen, put your
gun away and help me take an account of our firm's part of this stock
of goods,' and Mr. Ammen obeyed like a soldier.
"We youngsters were looking for tragedy, not comedy,-and dis
persed, a good deal disgusted.
"I did not see Captain Graut again until March, 18(54, when he
came to the army of the Potomac, in Virginia. He was Lieutenant
General Grant then and he had a much harder job on hand than that
one at Prairie du Ctylen, but, backed by Uncle Sam and a powerful army
and a wide-awake navy, It took him only a year to kick the confederacy
into worse confusion than old man Ammen's store was that morning
in 1800." .
When Captain U. 8. Grant was selling goods in southwestern Wis
consin the year before the war be disposed of a bill to a shoemaker
at Spring Green. Grant county. It developed that the shoemaker was
a much better buyer than payer. Grant made numerous attempts to
collect the bill, but without avail, lu spite of the fact that he was
known as a remarkably gcod collector.
After the seller of the leather had become famous as the head of
the army and was winning great battles, the Spring Green shoemaker
had a good deal to say about his personal acquaintance with General
The shoemaker had a son who was lacking iu wit. One evening,
when half a dozen patrons were lu the chop, the old man told Interest
ing stories about Grant's visits aud chats in his place, much to the
delight of his bearers. The loy was also an atteutlve listener.
Mrs. Shoemaker called her husband to the house. During his
absence the son took his father's place as a talker about the great
-v "You bet pop'll never forget Captain Grant," remarked the lad,
wfio said no more uutil one of the visitors asked why. .
"Pop wouldn't pay Captain Graut for some luther op lioughr. I'll
bet he ast iop mom a hundred times to pay for that luther, and pop
Just told him he didn't hef ter. One day, after the captain had ast pop
real hard for the money, pop said he would never pay It. Then Cap
tain Grant went ripbt ou of the shop and unhitched his team. Just
before be pot into his wugi be called pop out, and he ald: 'So you
won't pay that bill?' 'No, I won't,' and oop started back to the shop.
Quleker'n you could say Jack Robinson, Captain Grant came up be
hind ip and gave him four of the hardest kicks I ever seen u man git,
and then he got int his wagon and druv away. I uotis iop dou't tell
you alKjut that when he gits ter talkiu' about Grant" Lleuteuaut Gen
eral J. A. Watroua in Chicago Journal.
school have a vacant lot at the north of the school on which to play
otherwise they would be closely confined during their seasons of play.
The school yard proper Is inadequate for the number of children. Tha
Board of Education Is placing cinders in the yards of the various
schools and' making the playground as comfortable as possible. At
. some of the schools turning poles have been placed for the boys.
Restriction of Play
No specific Instructions are Issued by the superintendent relative
to the games played by the children, this matter being left entirely to
the discretion of the principals and teachers, who use their own Judge
ment as occasions arise. Superintendent Davidson realizes that the
average boy Is fearfully and wonderfully made, and that while It is
well and proper to direct him along certain general lines, it la a futile
proposition to burden him with too any rules and regulations regard
ing his play. "Just turn blm loose and he will find his own in good
time," says Mr. Davidson. "What a boy really knows is past finding
out God bless the boys. There are no really bad boys; some are
merely better than others."
As for the girls and their play at school, they continue to play
jacks, tag, bop scotch, button, button, who's got the button, keeps, skip
to my Lou, pussy wants a corner and others of the milder sert They
still bring the teachers flowers and apples In season, while many bring
their dolls, and lu the winter months sew doll clothes.
Play for Littlest Ones
Some of the kindergarten classes of the city are takem out during
the recesses by the teachers for a walk away f rem the acaooi and to
aome point of child interest It la interesting to Bote the eatbusiaam.
of even the "littlest" boy and girls on these outings. Their little eyee
dance when the teachers tell them they are going out for a nice
The teachers generally appreciate the value of play to the puplla
and they do all they can to encourage it In the right manner. The
truism, "All work and no play makes Jack a dull bey," kelda as
good today as the day it was written, and none realize It better than
the public school teachers.
"The play of a child Is the real tonic of hia existence." re
marked one teacher the other day.
Spirit of the West
It has been said that western boys and girls carry the "spirit
of the west" into their play In a manner that is refreshing. Take
any group of Omaha school children at play and you have ene of
: the happiest scenes to be found anywhere. There la a dash of
independence in every move and the glow of happiness on every
cheek; the merry laughter of childhood mingles with the sunshine
and in that little world all is joy. But few are the pains aad heart
achea to mar the serenity of childhood's happy days on the school
playground. Sometimes a doll's head will break or some boy will
tell another boy he has a brother who can whip the other boy's
brother, but such things are but trifles compared with the passing
joys of the playground.
Cut off both legs of a boy and even then he will be happy In
the school yard. A striking Instance of this fact was noted last
week in the person of little Milton Hoffman, a pupil of the public
Bchools and who hobbles around on two crutches. This little boy
asks for no sympathy, but enters into the games so far as he can
with an enthusiasm that is remarkable, lie Is an inspiration to
many boys with two sound Pmbs.
Scientists have thus far been unable to determine just what
proportion of energy a boy w ill expend In one hour of play as
compared to the amount expended during the same time of work,
but It Is a psychological fact that the words "play" and "work" do
not produce the same effect on the mind of a boy, although, In many
instances, the physical part of the proposition may be precisely the