John Bates Elementary School, Tulsa, OK
(and Phoebe Hearst Elementary)


About the Schools

The Teachers


Class Pictures

School-Related Activities

Memories from school

Bean Chowder


Blast from the past photos

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Mrs. Steyer on the P.A. system. Jimmie Steyer's mom would sometimes read the morning announcements with her thick accent (I had thought it was hispanic). She was a sweet lady. She brought us little tubs of Borden Ice cream once, and we ate it with little wooden spatula spoons. That was something usually reserved for Valentine's day. Remember decorating those white paper sacks?
In 3rd grade, she was invited to teach our class all about Hawaii. It was so great. At the conclusion of the learning phase we had a big luau. We ate poi! My Hawaiian food contribution was sugar cubes. We dressed in plastic grass skirts and were given plastic leis. Mrs. Steyer was wearing a real grass skirt and taught us how to hula to Pearly Shells, Tiny Bubbles, and another song having to do with a grass shack.
One occasion in about 3rd grade, I had decided that I liked Jimmy. He sat next to me in the lunch room and got up to get some milk. To show him that I liked him, I put ketchup on his brownie. Big mistake. I got in trouble and my Mom made me bring a Hostess Cupcake to school to give to him. I threw it in his lap as I walked over to my row location in gym class. He's now a dentist.

In kindergarten, Susie Orton got up in front of the class and did a dance routine to "Crocodile Rock." I had never seen an organized dance routine done by any of my 5 year old friends and neither had most of us. The dancing was charming, the music was cute and Susie was effervescent. It about gave me a cavity. :)

The chatter-box! I was a frequent visitor to the chatter box. The chatter box was a small square drawn in the upper right corner of the chalk board at the beginning of class. If you were caught chit-chatting your name got put in the box and you had to stay inside during recess. I usually used that time to sleep.

My Mother had several rose bushes and my father enjoyed beer. So what? Well my mother would clean the small brown beer bottles free of wrapping and then put a cut rose from one of our bushes into the water, wrapped in a paper towel. She would tell me which teacher to give it to and I'd have to walk to school with it, or when I was at Bates, take it on the bus. It was so embarrasing! Of course when I grew up I thought that perhaps Mom had sucked up to all the teachers whom I had annoyed throughout the year. But Mom assures me that she was just giving out roses. I still think it broke the ice a little. I was hyperactive and some of the teachers were exasperaated with me.

The bicenntenial! 1976. First of all, there was the Freedom Train that was touring the country and we got to see the constitution at this bus. The major event was the concert, however. I believe it was called "I Hear America Singing." Mrs. Jackson taught us a whole mess of patriotic songs such as "You're a Grand Old Flag," "God Bless America," and "My Country Tis of Thee." All the schoolkids in town were bussed to the Mabee Center for a huge concert. We sang the songs we learned in Mrs. Jackson's class and heard the other schools perform. There were also poetry contests and several of us got our dinky poems published in a city-wide school poetry book.

Weekly Readers. Some kind of kid newspaper that I remember liking. I remember reading about a new show, Big Blue Marble, that was about the Earth and environment. Also they talked about a new show called Mulligan Stew.

Did you go to Bates? Do you have a memory to share? Do you have a correction or addition?
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