Monday 7 June 2010

Rural teachers

This piece of art is a beautiful painting in its own right, but the story behind it adds another dimension.  It was painted by the Canadian Robert Harris after he met and heard the story of a teacher in one of the rural schools of Canada.  Here all ages of children were taught together in a single room, often poorly equipped and without any of the supplies we might think essential.

The story, set in Prince Edward Island, tells of a meeting of the school trustees who were questioning the teacher's methods.  She overcomes their objections by explaining that the son of one of the trustees can read from the Bible, something the trustee himself couldn't do.  The painting featured as one Canada's stamps in 1980.  It also featured as one of Canada's Heritage minutes, short films depicting some Canadian history.  It's very good to hear of history and heritage being highlighted in this way.

There is an audioguide to the painting to be found on Cybermuse.
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  1. I wish I could see what is on the paper on the desk in the lower left corner. Thanks for sharing.

  2. With the aid of a magnifying glass I can just make out

    Pine Creek

    Kate Henderson Teacher

    According to the Cybermuse website, the artist not only signed the picture in the normal way, he added his name as though carved into the desk. Nice touch, I thought.

  3. I love it, esp the story behind it. Thanks for sharing. :)

  4. What a wonderful post and a fabulous story! I love stories. Just got back from my parent's place--we were able to find another hot water heater tank for free--it's nearly new. Phew!

    The old one has been, er, buried and scrapped, and the new one plumbing allowing, will be in place tomorrow sometime.

  5. I love the story, and the way the teach looked at them, as well as her pose. Just beautiful!


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