Grant Center School offers a walk through time

 by MARI BAUER
IDA COUNTY COURIER

The little one room schoolhouse sits nestled in the arms of Moorehead Park in Ida Grove. Every year since 1980 the school has hosted guests from the local fourth grades to see what it was like to spend a day in the life of a student of the school.

Grant Center County School was built 1884 and was ready for use Sept. 27 that same year. It originally sat on the Northeast corner of Section II in Grant Township. It proved to be a temporary location when it was moved to the Southeast corner of Section 16 in Grant Township.

Here it was home to hundreds of children where from year to year it housed grades kindergarten through eighth grade. The schoolhouse was the center of the rural community for many years. It was a special kind of education that provided character-building principles and the basics of reading, writing, and arithmetic to the appropriate grade level by a single teacher. Most classes were small. The children got a real good education. When their work was done they listened to what the class on the recitation bench was talking about. Younger students benefited from listening to the upper grades. It was a means of preparing them for the progress through the grades as they had already been exposed to it and heard it all before. Students memorized states and capitols, math including multiplication, addition, division and subtraction. Phonics was an important part of the education and made for good readers. Spelldowns were common practice.

 

See the full story in the Oct. 6 edition of the Ida County Courier or subscribe online for instant access.