The Shaping Years:A Memoir of My Youth and Education

Educated: A Memoir (Hardcover)
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The attempt to assimilate children began upon their arrival at the schools: their hair was cut in the case of the boys , and they were stripped of their traditional clothes and given new uniforms. In many cases they were also given new names. In , at the age of twelve years, I was lassoed, roped and taken to the Government School at Lebret.

After my haircut, I wondered in silence if my mother had died, as they had cut my hair close to the scalp. I looked in the mirror to see what I looked like. I ran away from school, but I was captured and brought back. I made two more attempts, but with no better luck. Realizing that there was no escape, I resigned myself to the task of learning the three Rs.

Until the late s, residential schools operated on a half-day system, in which students spent half the day in the classroom and the other at work.

The theory behind this was that students would learn skills that would allow them to earn a living as adults. However, the reality was that work had more to do with running the school inexpensively than with providing students with vocational training. Tasks were separated by gender. Girls were responsible for housekeeping cooking, cleaning, laundry, sewing , while boys were involved in carpentry, construction, general maintenance and agricultural labour. Funding was a pressing concern in the residential school system. By the s, it was clear to many that the half-day system had failed to provide residential students with adequate education and training.

However, the half-day system was not eliminated until the late s, when more funding became available owing to a strong economy. School days began early, usually with a bell that summoned students to dress and attend chapel or mass. Breakfast, like all meals, was spartan, and eaten quickly in a refectory or dining hall.

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Betty sent a letter to her mom and little sister. She learned the blowing dirt of the country summer, when teeth turn gritty in the wind and shower water turns brown between shoulders and toes. Well I guess I better close for now. It illuminates this policy through the analysis of three aspects of its practical implementation: the respective place granted to the teaching of the country's two main mother tongues, French and Flemish; the compared weight of modern languages, classical languages and scientific disciplines in the curricula; the handbooks, the content of the programmes and the authors studied and proposed as models. Around the Web Yes! The article was produced within the scope of an inter-institutional project and analyses memories of women teachers who worked in the Italian Colonial Region of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Its decline began to manifest itself from the second half of the seventeenth century and led to the University of Macerata being downgraded to a secondary education institute during the Napoleonic era and then, during the Restoration period of the Papal States, to a second order university.

This was followed by three hours of classes or a period of work before breaking for lunch. The afternoon schedule followed a similar pattern, including either classes or work, followed by more chores before supper. Time was also set aside for recreation, usually in the afternoon or evening. Some schools had small libraries, while many schools offered organized sports as well as musical instruction, including choirs and brass bands.

The evening closed with prayer, and bedtime was early. It was a highly regimented system. On weekends there were no classes, but Sunday usually meant more time spent on religious practices. Until the s, holidays for many of the students included periods of work and play at the school. Only from the s on did the schools routinely send children home for holidays.

Therefore, many students in the residential school system did not see their family for years. I, p Overall, students received a poor education at the residential schools. This was true both in terms of academic subjects and vocational training. Students had to cope with teachers who were usually ill-prepared, and curricula and materials derived from and reflecting an alien culture.

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In the workplace, the overseers were often harsh, and the supposed training purpose of the work was limited or absent. In short, the education and vocational training provided by residential schools was inadequate. Moreover, the attempted assimilation of Indigenous students left them disoriented and insecure, with the feeling that they belonged to neither Indigenous nor settler society. John Tootoosis, who attended the Delmas boarding school also known as the Thunderchild school in Saskatchewan, was blunt in his assessment of the residential school system:.

There he is, hanging in the middle of two cultures and he is not a whiteman and he is not an Indian.

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They washed away practically everything from our minds, all the things an Indian needed to help himself, to think the way a human person should in order to survive. Many students suffered abuse at residential schools. While some staff tried to be good instructors and parental surrogates, the institutional setting and the volume of work defeated even the best of intentions. In some cases, children were heavily beaten, chained or confined. When allegations of sexual abuse were brought forward — by students, parents or staff — the response by government and church officials was, at best, inadequate.

The police were seldom contacted, and, even if government or church officials decided that the complaint had merit, the response was often simply to fire the perpetrator. At other times, they allowed the abuser to keep teaching. According to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission TRC , at least 3, Indigenous children died in the overcrowded residential schools. Due to poor record-keeping by the churches and federal government, it is unlikely that we will ever know the total loss of life at residential schools.

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Food was low in quantity and poor in quality, in large part due to concerns about cost. Moreover, research by food historian Ian Mosby published in revealed that students at some residential schools in the s and s were subjected to nutritional experiments without their consent or the consent of their parents. Overall, the experiments do not seem to have resulted in any long-term benefits.

Nutritional deficiencies and overcrowding led to regular outbreaks of diseases at the schools. Tuberculosis and influenza were the major killers, but students were also affected by outbreaks of smallpox , measles, typhoid, diphtheria, pneumonia and whooping cough. In the winter of —27, for example, 13 children died from a combination of measles and whooping cough at the Lytton school.

We were always taken to see the girls who had died.

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The Sisters invariably had them dressed in light blue and they always looked so peaceful and angelic. We were led to believe that their souls had gone to heaven, and this would somehow lessen the grief and sadness we felt in the loss of one of our little schoolmates. There would be a Requiem Mass in the chapel. We would all escort the body, which was lying in a simple handmade coffin, to the graveyard which was located close to the R. Although medical experts such as Dr. Peter Bryce, Dr. James Lafferty, Dr. Grain and Dr. Stone recommended measures to improve health and medical treatment, these were not implemented by the government, largely due to concerns about cost and opposition by the churches.

The schools could have helped children to reduce their vulnerability to tuberculosis by providing them with sanitary, well-ventilated living quarters, an adequate diet, warm clothing, and sufficient rest. Rather, the residential schools regularly failed to provide the healthy living conditions, nutritious food, sufficient clothing, and physical regime that would prevent students from getting sick in the first place, and would allow those who were infected a fighting chance at recovery. Indigenous students and parents resisted and protested the harsh regime in place at most residential schools.

Some children refused to co-operate and sabotaged the operations of the kitchen or classroom, stole food and supplies, or ran away as did Chanie Wenjack in My family lived at the bottom of the hill in a unit between Rego families on the second-floor of a triple-decker apartment. I have to get out of here. Public performances of Azorean-American identity are mainly organized among religious-based institutions — church committees and Portuguese-American clubs.

Villages in the Azores honor different patron saints. During a terrible famine in Portugal, the queen used all of her funds buying food for the people, so she had no financial resources left — only her crown, according to United Portuguese S. S, a website chronicling Portuguese history and traditions. Legend has it that the queen promised the Holy Spirit the crown in exchange for a miracle to relieve the famine. Then, just as the queen exited the church, she saw ships coming into the harbor loaded with wheat and corn. Portuguese-American clubs celebrate feasts that honor different patron saints.

About Portuguese festas feasts take place each year at different times throughout the United States, according to an article published by the Journal of the Association as for the Study of Ethnicity and Nationalism in These feasts preserve an Azorean cultural imprint of saudade — a concept of nostalgia for home that defines Azorean identity — Bunny L. No procession, no festa. When the next year rolled around, my mother told me I was going dressed as Saint Michael.

Educated: A Memoir (Hardcover)

What is Saint Michael wearing? Saint Michael is very important. My family were practicing parishioners at Saint Michael Church. With my brother and three cousins, I attended Saint Michael School for elementary education. And, years later, Saint Michael Parish hired my father as a janitor.

When I was Little, A Four-Year-Olds Memoir of Her Youth

East Coast. The archipelago is roughly miles west of the continente , miles east of Fall River. More than 1 million Portuguese immigrants live in the United States, making the country the largest host to Portuguese immigrants. Most of these immigrants are from the Azores.

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But the Portuguese are primarily concentrated in eight states. The greatest numbers reside in California and Massachusetts, but the percentage relative to state population is greatest in Rhode Island, where more than 9 percent of the entire state is of Portuguese ancestry. I wanted to be around different kinds of people.

As a young child, I always felt like I was in a rush. I was rushing to get out of Payless sandals. And I was rushing to grow up and get out. So I escaped the enclave of familiarity, spending four years near the flagship campus followed by the two longest years of my life in Baltimore City.

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We talked about our families — and for a brief moment I felt truly connected, until I told him my parents were from the Azores. His parents were from the continent. This happens when prospective migrants learn of opportunities and receive support from family or friends who have already emigrated from the shared homeland. I felt half-outraged, half-betrayed.

I had always identified as Portuguese. Personality clashes were one thing — but outright rejection by our own blood was indefensible. I knew this interaction was distinct. It was the closest I had gotten to my heritage. Cuba is 5, kilometers from the Azores. She looked at me like I was pulling a fast one. Accent-less and white with immigrant parents has that effect on people. When I looked back into the stands, I saw my dad: Eduardo Manuel Faria, a full-blooded Portuguese man, who has never stepped foot in Mexico. It was one of the few times that my dad had time in his janitorial work schedule to come see one of my high school home games in Providence, R.

It seemed socially repulsive. One day working in the newsroom for my university capstone course, I had tried explaining the difference between white culture and white skin tone as a way to think about socio-economic class and cultural experience. At this point of my senior year, the identifier rolled off my tongue like a chart-topping lyric. Portuguese persons first immigrated to the United States in the s.

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Most of these immigrants were Azorean men who labored as whalers and fisherman on American vessels, settling in port towns like New Bedford, Mass. They mostly settled in Southeastern Massachusetts communities, including mill towns like Fall River and Taunton, Mass. Many worked as industrial laborers in Providence and Pawtucket, R.

Soon after this wave of immigration, the U. As a result, from to , less than 4, Portuguese immigrants were admitted to the United States. I had felt so terribly lost at the Baltimore law school.