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Brockport / Archives / Brockport State Normal School, 1867-1942

Brockport State Normal School, 1867-1942

The Brockport Normal School opened its doors in 1867 and offered three different courses of study for the entering student. The first and simplest option was called Elementary English. It consisted of two years of study in Arithmetic, Grammar, Analysis, Geography, Drawing, Algebra through Quadratics, Geometry, Elements of Chemistry, Physiology, Natural Philosophy, Rhetoric, Mental and Moral Philosophy, and Civil Government. An example of the 1868 curriculum is below.

First Year
First Term
Arithmetic
Grammar and Analysis
Modern Geography, Use of Globes and Map Drawing
Reading and Orthography
Penmanship, Impromptu Composition, and Declamation or Select Reading
Second Term
Algebra
History and Ancient Geography
Chemistry and Physiology
Reading and Orthography
Penmanship, Impromptu Composition, and Declamation or Select Reading
Second Year
First Term
Algebra, first half; Geometry, second half
Bookkeeping, first half; Natural Philosophy, second half
Rhetoric, first half; Methods of Teaching and School Economy, second half
Drawing Essays, Impromptu Composition, and Select Readings or Declamation
Second Term
Mental Philosophy
Moral Philosophy and Civil Government
Practice in Training School, three hours daily
Impromptu Composition and Essays

The second course of study was called Advanced English and was three years of the above subjects with additional chemistry, physiology, natural philosophy, algebra, geometry, trigonometry, surveying, botany, geology, and astronomy.

The third and final course of study was called the Classical Course. This was the most difficult and it required four years of the above courses with the supplement of three years of Latin and two years of Greek or Modern Languages. The first two years of education were quite similar to the Elementary English Course of Study. An example of the last two years is below.

Third Year
First Term
Trigonometry, Surveying and Mensuration
Latin
Greek or Modern Languages
Essays, Impromptu Composition, and Select Readings or Declamation
Second Term
Natural Philosophy
Latin
Greek or Modern Languages
Essays in Impromptu Composition
Practice in Training School, one hour daily
Declamations or Select Readings
Fourth Year
First Term
Chemistry and Botany
Latin
Greek or Modern Languages
Essays, Impromptu Composition, and Select Readings or Declamation
Practice in Training School, one hour daily
Second Term
Astronomy
Latin, Greek, or Mental Philosophy, Civil Government and Moral Philosophy
Practice in Training School each day
Select Readings or Orations
Essays and Impromptu Compositions

The Training School was a separate model that emphasized methods of teaching and gave a practical experience.

In 1871 there appeared to be a few changes in the courses offered. Vocal music, light gymnastics, and Methods of Teaching Object Lessons were added to the Elementary English Course. Perspective Drawing, light gymnastics, and General Literature were added to the Advanced English Course. The Classical Course was broadened with the addition of light gymnastics, Methods of Teaching Object Lessons, and Methods in Higher Studies.

By 1896 the curriculum had started to change. The Elementary English Course had disappeared and a Scientific Course took the place of the third option. The Scientific Course differed from the others in that only two years of languages was required. Otherwise, the course offerings had remained constant for a period of over thirty years. During this stretch of 1868-1898, 994 students graduated from the Brockport Normal School.

The turn of the century brought some more curricular changes to the Normal School. The revised English Course is below.

First Year

Second Year

First Term

First Term

Rhetoric 2

Science Methods (1/2)

General Methods (1/2 semester)

Number Methods (1/2)

Primary Methods (1/2)

Drawing Methods (1/2)

Psychology

Music Methods (1/2)

Drawing 2 (1/2

History and Science of Education

Music 2 (1/2

Arithmetic Methods

Mathematics (1/2)

Geography Methods 2 (1/2)

 

Language Methods (1/2)

 

Observation

   

Second Term

Second Term

School Economy (1/2)

English Literature 2

Civics (1/2)

Teaching

Geography Methods 1

Astronomy (1/2)

Advanced American History

 

Grammar Methods

 

Rhetorical Work

 

In 1907, high school graduation became mandatory for entrance into the Brockport Normal School. What had been the academic department of the Normal and Training School was transformed into the high school for the village of Brockport. The curriculum of this year until 1921 stayed the same with method courses as the core of education.

In 1912, the State Education Department had authorized a special course for the Brockport Normal School. It was called the Rural School Course and its purpose was to prepare teachers for efficient service in the rural schools of the state. The course was one year in length and granted graduates a diploma allowing them to teach in the rural schools of the state. An area was defined as rural if it contained fewer than 5,000 inhabitants. The curriculum of this program included Psychology, Methods of Language, Grammar and Composition, School Economy and Rural School Organization, Methods of Vocal Music, Methods of Arithmetic, Methods of American History, Methods of Drawing and Elementary Handwork, Methods of Geography, Methods of Primary Reading, Spelling and Phonics, Methods of Nature Study and Elementary Science, Penmanship, Methods of Physical Training, and Observation and Practice. This course remained for about ten years, and then in 1921 was changed to an elective, which was available, if enough students requested it.

In 1922 the curriculum changed substantially again. Students entering would be required to complete three full years to secure their elementary certificates. The new three-year curriculum was differentiated for students intending to teach in the Kindergarten-Primary years (grades 1-3); the Intermediate years (grades 4-6); and the Grammar years (grades 7-9). This new curriculum de-emphasized the methods approach that had characterized the early 1900’s courses of study. The course of study was as follows:

Kindergarten-Primary

Intermediate

Grammar

First Semester

First Semester

First Semester

Essentials of English 1

Same

Same

Health Education

Same

Same

Arithmetic

Same

Same

History (European)

Same

Same

Introduction to Teaching

Same

Same

Drawing

Same

Same

Music

Same

Same

Observation

Same

Same

     

Second Semester

Second Semester

Second Semester

Essentials of English

Same

Same

Health Education

Same

Same

Geography (general)

Same

Same

Penmanship

Same

Same

Music

Same

Same

Psychology

Same

Same

English Literature

Same

Same

Observation

Same

Same

     

Third Semester

Third Semester

Third Semester

Primary Reading

Drawing

Drawing

Health Education

Health Education

Health Education

Kindergarten Theory

Geography

Geography

Music

Music

Music

Nature Study

Nature Study and

Elementary Science

Nature Study and

Elementary Science

Handwork

History

History

Technique of Teaching

(School Economy and Observation)

Technique of Teaching

(School Economy and Observation)

Technique of Teaching

(School Economy and Observation)

     

Fourth Semester

Fourth Semester

Fourth Semester

Tests and Scales

Tests and Scales

Tests and Scales

Sociology

Sociology

Sociology

History of Education

History of Education

History of Education

Kindergarten Theory

Music Appreciation

Music Appreciation

Industrial Arts

Physical Training

Participation

Participation

Participation

Health

Health

Health

Elec. & J.H.S. Field

     

Fifth Semester

Fifth Semester

Fifth Semester

Library

Library

Library

Specialized Psychology

Specialized Psychology

Specialized Psychology

Songs and Games for Children

Reading Methods

General Science

Reading Methods

Participation

Music

Participation

Conference

Drawing

Conference

Elective

Literature

Elective

 

History

   

Geography

   

Mathematics

   

Economics

   

Participation

     

Sixth Semester

Sixth Semester

Sixth Semester

Observation and Practice Teaching

Observation and Practice Teaching

Observation and Practice Teaching

Children’s Literature

Principles of Education

Junior High School English

Conferences

Conferences

Conferences

Principles of Education

Penmanship

Principles of Education

Handwork

Reading and Juvenile Literature

Penmanship

1934 brought more curriculum changes, which aimed to educate future teachers in the knowledge of elementary schools, understanding of child development, and technique in the use of subject matter as a means of educating a child. Such courses as Child Development, Evolution of the School, Modern Elementary School Principles, and Practicum in Teaching were introduced.

It was also at this time that a fourth year of formal education was envisioned to supplement the three-year Normal School course by introducing an "in service" year. Courses included here were Principles of Education as a continuation of professional preparation, and Modern Poetry as well as Modern Social Trends.

In 1937, Brockport Normal School introduced a summer session into the curriculum for the first time. This gave students the opportunity to accelerate their schedule and graduate early. Past graduates also had the opportunity to return and complete the fourth year if they graduated before it was implemented. The following is the 1941 summer curriculum.

English

 

201-202

Advanced Composition and Speech

302

American Literature

405

The Chaucerian Age

408

The Modern Novel

   

Social Science

 

201

Contemporary Civilization

301

American History

402

Sociology

408

International Relations

   

Education

 

201-202

Child and the Curriculum

402

Seminar in Education

   

Psychology

 

406

Mental Hygiene

   

Health Education

 

202

Personal Hygiene

407

Organization and Administration of Health, Physical Education, and Safety

   

Science

 

301

Introduction to Geography

403

Geography of Asia

Last Updated 6/24/10

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