In Class - Yn y Dosbarth.
by Gordon Weare
(Seland Newydd - New Zealand)
Dawns Werin gyda Indiaid Cochion
Folk Dancing with American Indians.
The Ysgol British Primary School morning Assembly ordeal was over and it was time for that other ordeal, the 'entire' morning of arithmetic, Duh!
Those on the left side of the class wore nice blazers, had nice pencil boxes and real pens.
Those on the right side of the class had so many holes in their jerseys that when they took it off, they had a hard time getting it on again, plus cotton dresses & sandals in winter.
We'd be given ten sums, and left to it. Later, pens down and the given answers decoded. Miss W would then say, 'And who got 10 out of 10?'
and only the hands on the left side went proudly up. And so on through who got 8,7,6 etc. And the tension grew.'And who got one out of ten?'
and I'd shoot my arm and down in an attempt to be exonerated. The atmosphere now leaden.. 'And who got NOUGHT out... of... ten?'
There was a long silent, agonising pause. 'C'mon who got nought-out-of-ten!?'
Eventually the sinner stood slowly up. How sad, cruel, as Mary R. tearfully stood to confess all.
Not only do I see this now, I can still feel it.
God Bless you Mary, wherever you are. This boy sees your pain.
My regular humiliation in Ysgol British, Llangefni was to arrive late most mornings and be paraded before the raised stage for all to view and judge.
I was late so often that the morning assembly seemed incomplete to everyone when I was on time and sat in the congregation instead of staring at them from the front. This did not happen often.
I'm ten years after you, but I also remember kids in wellies and plimsoles in Winter. No designer trainers on those council house kids! It hurts to read that part of your poignant article and remember.
Thank you for the images. Are you wearing a gas mask in the top left picture?