South Shields Local History Group

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Geordie Humorous Stories – Jane Carr

Jane Elizabeth Carr (nee Summerbell) was born in December 1884 to Elizabeth and William Summerbell. She attended Holy Trinity Church School from the age of 3. She was 14 when she became a pupil teacher and she taught at Holy Trinity until the late 1940s. During her years as a teacher she recorded on scraps of paper these stories of South Shields bairns and their parents. In 1961, in her 77th year, she wrote them down in an exercise book.


The following was compiled from Geordies, for Geordies, by a Geordie.

Initiation of Tyne-side language is necessary to comprehension; otherwise you will quickly sniff and dismiss.

Full appreciation will be experienced by a Tynesider, who has been transplanted, by circumstances to some place where he never hears his own dialect.  Students of history of the English language may find something of interest.

The collection began in the reign of Queen Victoria; when many children were admitted to school, knowing Tyneside dialect, better than they knew English.

It is a pity that provincialism is so frowned upon to-day.

The men who spoke it, made the river Tyne famous in England and abroad, for ship – building, repairing, coalmining etc. It was the hall mark of our skilful manual workers.

Be proud of being offspring’s of such worthy ancestors.  Men of courage, toughness and intelligence, who made the Tyne known throughout the world. Yes! Wherever you go; you’ll meet a Geordie.

School    Smiles.

A mixed bag of English


Tyne-side dialect.


Nature lesson.

Each child had a daisy.  The children had been chatting about the flower and the pleasures of daisy picking; when teacher said: “Isn’t it wonderful?  The mowing machine cuts down every blade of grass and every daisy. All gone!  Next year, up they grow, making a beautiful carpet of green, flowered with daisies of white and yellow.  I think that is marvellous.” A little girl said:-  “Oh!  Ar nar sumthin far clivara thin that.”

Teacher said:”Do you Molly?  Come beside me and tell me all about it.”

The child adopted a confidential manner and said: “Di yi nar me Ganny?”  Teacher answered in the affirmative, so Molly continued.  “Wey!  She kept hens in the cool-hoose, till the bottom was arl muck, nasty, dorty muck.  Noo! Di yi nar wats growing out the muck?  Teacher confessed she didn’t. The child slowly articulated:  “Dan – de – lions, teacha Dan – de – lions!   That’s a lot clivera thin your daisy-field.”  

Teacher said: “I’ll tell you how that happened, next Nature lesson, Molly; but tell me dear, has your grand-mother still got the hens in her coal house?”

Molly answered: “No. They got loppy.  She selt thim ti sum folks for next to nowt.  They didn’t care hoo loppy they war, es lang is they got nice cheap dinnars.


So natural.

It was almost time to dismiss the class.  It was Friday afternoon of first school week of the under fives.  Teacher said:-  “Children! Listen to me; I have some-thing grand to tell you.  To- morrow is Saturday; next day Sunday.  Two whole days, when you do not attend our week day school.  Now! Get your out-door clothes and I will help you.  Then we say our little prayer and off you go, till Monday morning.

She was fastening a boy’s coat, when she said: “Do you like school, Thomas?

He answered: “Yis. Ar dee.”

Delighted teacher said: “Oh! I’m so pleased to hear you say that, dear.  Which lesson do you like the very best of all ?”

Thomas answered: “This in”

Teacher said.”This?
Thomas looked up and pleasantly said: “Ar arlwis like ganin home at tea-time; but when Ar hevn’t ti cum back till Munda; that’s the very best of all. Teacher’s delight quickly faded.


Note the date.

It was November 10th, the day before Remembrance Day.

The head-mistress came into the class-room and said:- “Now children, a lady is bringing some lovely poppies to-morrow. If you would like to buy one, they are one penny each.”

She said to the teacher: “Tell the children the reason of this.”

Next morning, a small boy rushed into school with a penny and said:” “Ar want a broon un.”  The teacher said:” There are no brown ones; but I will go and get you a pretty red one.”  When she returned with a poppy, he said: “Ar don’t want a floo- a.  Ar want a little broon dog.”

He had to have his penny returned, plus a sweet, before he was consoled.


A dash.

A junior boy was reading to the teacher and came to a punctuation mark named, a dash; used to mark a break in a sentence.

The children were doing individual work.

The teacher called the whole class to attention to talk about this mark.

She gained its name and illustrated by examples, how it was used.

Noticing one boy reading his own book she said;- “Charles: tell me what you know of the dash?

Charles looked non – plussed for a second, then half smiled and said:

“The dash is what men flee inti the bar for, at dinna time.  They swally it doon, cas tha in a hurry, to catch the next bus.”


How to kill a worm.

The lesson was about a garden.  One little boy said:-“There’s, worms in our garden.”

Then Sammy shouted: “Teacha! Ar nar hoo ti kill worms, ind, niva touch thim.”

Teacha said: “Come beside me, Sammy, and tell the class all about it.”

This is what Sammy said:- ”Yi get a gun.  Gan ti the jungle, kill a lion ind skin it.  Then yi put the lion’s skin on yarsel, ind cum back.  Gan beside the worm, then it lurks up ind dees of fright.”

Practical Peter said:”That’s a narful lot i botha, Sammy.  Ar just stamp ont”


More peaceful .

The new school children had got somewhat settled.  It was their first morning and the head mistress had been very very busy.

She had been in and out the class-room, a number of times.  Always hurrying.

A little girl said:”Is she the boss i this place?  Not yee!”

The teacher answered:”Peggy; that lady is the head mistress. I am your teacher.”

Peggy said: “That’s far betta”

Teacher said: What’s far better, Peggy?

Child :- “It’s far betta ti nar whe is the boss.  Me Ma ind me Da are arlwis chowin the rag about whe is the boss i wor hoose.  It’s arfal!”


Examination impossible.

His Majesty’s Inspector had just left the classroom when Margaret shouted: “Whe’s that fella, teacha?”

Teacher said: “He is the Inspector.  He comes to examine the work of the school.”

Margaret then said: “Wey.”  He cannit exam us, cas wi nar nowt.  Wiv just com.”

Teacher said: “Margaret, he will be quite pleased with you, if you do as you are told and answer when spoken to.”

Then Margaret astonished the teacher by saying: “He wad make a luvly click for yi, teacha.  Wad yi hev im?”

Margaret was quite satisfied when teacher said: “He has a wife.  She is at home getting his tea ready.”


A hereditary failing.

A junior boy left his overcoat at school, at twelve o’clock.

His mother came for it and asked how he was getting on with his lessons.

The teacher said: “He is most forgetful.”

The mother said:  “Wey! Yi cannit blame the bairn for that.  It’s from the fatha.  He warkt oot one day, forgot he was merried, forgot he had ony bairns and forgot where e lived. Ee’s alive yi nar.  Ee’s away on a ship is a single man.  So yi see; its not the falt i the bairn. Is it?”


Lesson = Theory Music.

The children had been told that the black note with a stem, was named TAA.

It was known as a walking note; in duration of time.

The teacher had taught staff, bar lines, time signatures and how to beat 4/4 time.  Four taa’s in a bar.

She thought, she had given very good lessons.  Noticing boy playing with string; she said :- “Charles! What does four taas in a bar mean?

Charles was taken aback; but only for a second.  His face brightened and he answered:- “Oh!  Fowa sailors in a pub!”


She knew.

Lesson.  Individual word building with one inch square letters.

A little girl said: “Teacha!  A’ve made a four lettered word.”

The teacher went to her table and asked the child to read it.

She said: “Snug.”

Teacher said: “Clever girl. Could you give me a sentence with the word – snug in it?”

The child of five years of age answered:- “The snug is the place, where you can go and drink your beer nice and comfortable.”


The reason why.

Lesson:-  A talk about Peter Pan.

Time:-     Before National Insurance; in the days of Work or Want.

Teacher, “I think Peter Pan had no wish to grow into a man.  Why I wonder?”

Boy:-  “Wey!  He was wise. He knew, if he was a man, he wud just hev ti work, till e tuk bad.  Gan back, take bad, owa end owa, till he dee-d’!”


Santa Claus was not T. T.

Lesson. = Composition
Subject. = Santa Claus.
Class.=  Std. 1. (Infant’s Department)

One boy wrote a good story; but his last sentence was: He drinks.

The teacher asked him why he had written those two words. This is what he answered.

“Me Ma joined a club to buy a bottle i whiskey.  This was for a forst foot party, on New Year’s morning.

On Christmas mornin, the empty bottle was on the table.

Me Ma held it up in front of me Da ind said: “Hey!”Just like it that.”

Me Da said:”Wey ye should nar we cums on Christmas Eve.”

Then me Ma said: “Ay! Ar nar.  Sandy Clars.”

Me Da said:- “Yis! That’s reet!”



The head mistress came into the classroom of standard one boys.

She said:-  “Listen!  I’ve something to tell you. You all remember Mr Holmes.  He was our vicar. Well! He is now a Canon.  Does anyone know what that means?”

Boy :- “A cannon is a big gun.”

The mistress said:  “The cannon you are speaking of is not spelt the same; but there is a similarity in meaning.

His preaching will now be heard by many more people, over a much wider area, than when he was a Vicar.

We can almost say he is now a big noise in the work of the Church of God.”

She then turned to the teacher and said: “Put the two words on the blackboard and point out the difference in spelling.”


A good reason.

Child:-      “Miss! Can, ar get oot soon?”

Teacher:-  “Why; Ida?”

Child:-     “Av got to luk for a brick, a whole brick.”

Teacher:-” What are you going to do with a brick?”

Child:-    “Am go in ti chuck it, through a wife’s winda.”

Teacher :- “Oh’ Ida! That would be wrong; v-e-r-y  wrong.”

Child:-     “Wey!  The wife did wrong, very wrong.

Teacher “What did she do, “Ida?”

Child:-    “She pinched me Da off me Ma; ind she’s kept him for ar – sell!”


Experience teaches.

 Lesson. =  History.

Class .= 1st year, junior girls

Time. = Immediately following inspection by school nurse.

Teacher. “Why did so many people of former days wear wigs.”

Girl:         “Well. they were wiser than we are.”

Teacher: “In what way ?”

Girl:        “They just had to take that wig off; catch tha arn dickies, ind kill thim.  Nee botha ti ony-body else.


A misunderstanding.

Lesson.   Speech training.

Class.     Fives

Teacher printed a. e. i. o. u. on the black board. The children knew the short sounds.

The teacher said:- ” Children! These are the five hard working letters of our alphabet. They are called vowels. Listen carefully, while I say their names; as I like good, clear vowels.

One little boy said. “Aye!” Ya just like me Ma, she’s careful.”

Teacher said :- “Is she, dear?”

The boy answered: “Oh’ Yis.  She gives wi syrup i figs evry Fridar night, ti clear wa vowels.”


The dance.

A teacher was absent and the head- master was taking her class.

It was the year 1941. It was a “C” class, aged ten; behind in school work, due to the war.

He became exasperated at their hesitancy in reading.

If one stopped at a three lettered word, he said:- “Go to standard one and see if any-one there can tell you.”

Each child that came in said: “The master says, what does a-n-d  spell. What does t–h-e spell? The master says what does t-e-n spell and so on.

One of standard one boys said: “Aye! The heed-master is a geet big dunce.  He nars nowt.  Dis he?  It a shem for him ti be a boss!”



The juniors were singing Easter hymns , softly and sweetly.

The teacher of the infants said to her class. “Keep very quiet. I will open this door.  You listen and see if you can tell me what hymn they are singing?”

Just as she opened the door, the Juniors began the hymn:
“Hail the day that sees Him rise.
To His throne above the skies.
Alleluia” etc.

She gently closed the door and said: “You don’t know that one.”

A little girl said: “Ar nar Ali Hassan. He lives in wor street; but Ar dain nar Ali Loolya.”


What might have been.

In the days of slates and pencils; the children often cleaned their slates with spit and dried them with some part of their clothing. (Boys:- cuffs. Girls:- petticoats)

The head mistress used to ask the little people to bring pieces of rag; but they often forgot. She suggested to the teacher of the youngest children to have a watchful, slate cleaning lesson, once a week.  She said she would prepare a disinfecting solution and put it in the watering can.

The children were asked to try and bring a piece of clean rag.

The activity began. The teacher hurried round the class with the watering can, giving extra good measure.  

Imagine how she felt, when she saw her charges tip the slates and drink the mixture.

She gave all the class a drink of water.  They were delighted. She then told the mistress, who said: “You ought to have warned the children; but luckily it is a very mild solution of disinfectant. It won’t do them any harm.”

How thankful she was, when her charges all returned to school in the afternoon.


The unkind nurse

Lesson. = Conversation.

Boy: “Teacha!  Wi got a new baby last night; ind it cum howling”

Teacher:  “Yes, pet!  New babies always cry after leaving their warm cosy place in baby-land. I think they feel strange and frightened in our world”

Small boy:- “Nor!  It’s not that. It was the nurse ti blame.”

Teacher: “The nurse?”

Small boy:- Yis!  Yi nar what she did, teacha?”

Teacher: “No, dear!”

Small boy:  “She doubled the poor bairn up, ti fit hur bag. She hurt it.  That wasn’t kind.  Was it?”


Daddy too busy

New scholar:-  “Teacha!  Ar’ll tell yi sumthin.  If ye bray me; me Da’s cumin ti yi’; wiv ee’s big belt.  Ind yi’ll loss, mind yi”

Teacher:-  “Emily! In this school, we try to be kind.  We try to do as Jesus wishes.  He said:- “LOVE ONE ANOTHER”

Emily :- “Oh” But me Da hes ti gan ti work ind he hes me Ma.   He hes nee time ti let yi luv im.  Yi’ll het to get a man i ya arn.”


The compliment

Class:- Admission.

There was a little boy in this class, who often smacked other children.

The teacher talked to him and told him he must try to be kind.

Next day he smacked a boy’s face very hard.  The teacher said: “Now! Ralph!  If you hurt another child. I will smack you.”

Soon after he beat someone else.  Teacher smacked him.

He flung his arms round her legs; looked up at her with adoration and said: “Aye! Ar luv vi.  Ar dee! Yi don’t nar hoo ti hit.  Yi shud gan:- Bang! Biff! Slang! Like me Da dis.”


What is worth doing; is worth doing well.

Class :- Under fives.

Lesson: Clay- modelling.

Teacher :- ” Children! I am not pleased with the balls you’ve made.  I told you to make a round and round motion, with the clay under your hand. Look at Gertrude’s ball. It’s perfect.”

Gertrude:- “Ay! But mind, Ar worked se hard, making that barl.  Ar cud feel me eyes garn round ind roond i me heed.  Mebbees arl gan cock-eyed yit, wi making that barl.”

Boy’s voice: “If yi dee, Gertie; gan ti Sundland.  They cure cock-eyes”

He was referring to Sunderland eye infirmary.


Fire- works

It was the day after Guy Fawkes; November 6:

Lesson:-  Conversation.

One small boy was so excited. He said: “Ee! Wi had the best bon-fire in all the world last neet.”

“Where Matthew?  asked teacher.”

Matthew: “On Wind-mill hill.”

Teacher:”Did you have fire-works? “

Boy: “No!  Wi bont the cooch.”

Teacher:- “The couch, Matthew?”

The boy explained as follows: “Yis!  It was aard, so we kerried it out-side.  Me Da covered it wi paraffin oil, end set it a leet.  It was full i bugs.  The bleezes went reet up, and the bugs wa garn off like double crackers:- Bang! Crack!! Crack !!! Ooh. It was mar-vel-lous.”


Fore-warned is fore-armed.

Class: Under fives.

Time:-  H. M. Inspector’s visit.

The door into the class room was behind the blackboard and the teacher.

The Inspector had opened this door and was quietly entering the room; when a shrill voice piped out:-  “Watch yar-sel teacha.  Tha’s a chep slyin in.”

Fortunately he had a sense of humour and said:  “All friends of the teacher I see.”


Over – done.

At one time, it was the custom, in the infant school, to correlate lessons, as far as possible. Psychologically, the idea was sound. Unfortunately; it was often carried to excess.

The little people had a nature lesson on the turnip; conversation lesson:- turnip.  Drawing, colouring, cutting out, modelling and by teacher’s help a wall picture of farm-hands loading wagons with turnips.

After all this, the teacher graciously presented the turnip to a little boy who said :- “Ar daint want ya turnip. Keep it yar-sell.  Ar’m sick i the sight on’t”

The teacher understood


Nature study.

Lesson:-   Hens and chicks.

Class:-      Fives.

Girl’s voice :- “Teacha! Me Da bought six chickens, end four are goin ti be Cock-a-doodle doos.”

Boys voice: “Oh! Well! Ya Da ill hev ti ring sum i the cock’s necks; else it il be M-U-R-D-A for the poor hens. They cannit stand it.”


His choice.

The children had been caught the traditional nursery rhymes .

The teacher now began short rhymes by well known persons. R. L. Stevenson, George McDonald, Christina Rossetti etc.

She searched and gave of the best; because it was one of pet subjects.

After telling that delightful, story by Rose Fyleman entitled: The rhyming prince, she said: “Now, children; you all know what a rhyme is. You have learned some wonderful rhymes. Fred! Stand up and tell the class your favourite rhyme.”

He got up; stood very straight and shouted:-

“Ar hit him in the eye,
Wir a lump i taty pie”

Teaching is sometimes disappointing.


A lesson for the teacher.

Lesson:-  Last of the four rules

The teacher had given a number of lessons on division.  She gave an easy test and was both disappointed and annoyed at the results.

In her vexation, she raised her voice, and said biting words to her class.

When she finished little Alfy said:-  “Aye! Its a gud job, yi try ti be good; else yi wad hev been cursin ind swearin there mind”

Teacher was ashamed. She quietly said: “I’m sorry Alfy. I was angry.”

Then Alfy said: “Niva mind, ya cliva.  Ya jumpin mad one minute; ind is nice as pie the next.”

The teacher looked kindly at him and said :- “Well Alfy. I will try to be as nice as pie; always”

Alfy then said: “Oh dain’t; if yo get owa gud yi might dee.  Just stop the way yi are.  Ya arl reet”


His query.

Time:-   Before school dinners

It was the first morning of school life for this class

Little boy :- “Teacha!  Di wi cum ti school efta dinner?”

Teacher:-  “Yes dear . You do.”

Boy :- “Di wi cum ti school efta tea?”

Teacher: “No, dear. After tea, you don’t come back, until the next morning.”

Boy :- “Wat di wi dee; when wa Mars’ gis wi tea for wa dinnars?”

He was disappointed when teacher said: “Darling, you must come to school two times a day; morning and afternoon, even if your mother gives you tea at dinner time.”


Mother’s work is never done.

Teacher: – “You know children, Jacob had twelve sons.  How proud he must have felt.  Twelve boys. Think you can see them.  A dozen! Wonderful!  We will count them.

Boys voice :- Ay!  It was alreet for him; but Ar bet the poor mutha nearly conked out ivery day, workin efta that lot.

Girls voice:-  “Ar but a man could her more than one wife in those days.”

Boy’s voice:-  Oh!  Wey! That’s not se bad; but God help the man; if they arl had tribes i bairns.”


The wrong word.

One of the wee boys came to school with his cousin.  He loved her, he depended upon her.  Her name was Victoria.

It was the day after Empire Day; now named Common wealth Day.

The children and teacher were having a conversation about the celebrations.  

The wee boy said :- ” God did not luv King George much.”

The teacher questioned him and he said:- “Well” Ar’ll the school prayed for God to send him Victorias and he just got one woman carled Mary.



Lesson was after free conversation in play-room.  The children were excited, after free access to games and toys.

Teacher:-  “Children! I’m not going to begin this lesson until you all are quiet.

Silence at last was gained and teacher said:- “Oh! How wonderful to have such quietness after such a hub-bub.”

A high shrill voice piped out:-  “Oh!  but teacha.  Ar daint like this.  Might as well be dead.  Far betta hev noise.  Ar like music and rows.”

Teacher:- “That’s right, pet.  Different people have different fancies.”


Contact and separation.

Lesson:-  Speech training.

Twin girls were admitted this particular morning.

The class was learning the sound of the letter ‘P.’  The teacher said:-  “Children!   Look at my lips. See!  I put them together, then I quickly open them and breathe out Look! P. P. P.”

One of the twins called out:-  “Ar wi larnin to play bubbles, Miss?”

Her sister looked at her with scorn and said:- “Yi geet feul. Ony-body nars the teacha’s larnin wi hoo ti smoke swanky.”

The teacher felt deflated.


The only present.

A little boy shouted:- “Wor babby got Christened on Sunda.”

Teacher said:- “Your mother will be relieved, darling now the Christening is over. Has the baby got any nice presents?”

The boy answered: “No!  Miss! He’s got nowt” Then his face brightened and he said:- “Oh; yis! He’s got the wind; end e can make luvly cock eyes wid.  Betta than me.”


Her aim.

One of the teachers of the juniors, kept a girl behind to do corrections.

Next day, the mother of the child come to find out why this had been.

The teacher explained that it was for the girls good; as she was capable of much better work.  The mother said:- “Ye luk at me.  Am nee scholar und Ar got a man.  Wor Meg’s nee scholar ; ind she got a good man.  Leave the lass a be!  Scholarships not ivry-thing; ind when Ar luk it sum iv the schul teacha’s’ fyeses,  Ar think its worth nowt. Nowt at arl!”


Willing to oblige.

Lesson : Nature.

The lesson had been about ‘The tulip.’

The teacher now began questioning.  The children answered well.  She then said:- “We will have oral composition.”

After a while the children become weary, as the teacher had exhausted their knowledge! 

She held the flower before the class and said:- “Now children, I would like one more sentence about this lovely flower.”

A little girl who wore a pained expression Said:- “That floo-ar is jolly well sickening.”


Quite possible.

A small girl kept fidgeting in her seat, for such a long while, that the teacher said:-  “What is the matter, dear? Why are you so restless?”

The child answered:- “Well Ar’ve been bothered arl day, wiv a lop.”

The boy sitting next to her said:- “By gum!  Ar’ll be lucky, if ar’m not bothered arl neet, wi ya lop.”


The same; yet different.

Commercial Road was low lying.  After heavy rain or snow, it was often muddy, due to heavy traffic and poor drainage.

Teacher saw one of her little charges crying.  She went to the child and saw the reason of her grief. She said:- “Oh. Anne dear, have you fallen in the mud?”

The child answered between sobs:- “No!  Ar hevn’t!  Ar’ve tummelled in the clarts”


Quay and Key.

The school care-taker passed through the classroom.

A little girl said:- “Teacha! Whees he?”

The teacher told her and a small boy said :- “Oh! Ar nar him. Ee gans up the quay ivry neet.”

The little girl then said:-  “Teacha. Is he magic?”

The teacher was busy and just answered: “No!”

Then the girl said:- “Ee must be magic.  Hoo dis a big man like him, get up a key; if he’s not magic.”

She was disappointed; when teacher explained to the class the meanings of the two words, with the same sound.

41. (a) and (b.)

Two stories about new babies.


Small boy:- “Teacher! Me Ma hes a new baby.”

The teacher was of the gushing type. She said :- “Oh How perfectly lovely.”

The boy looked at her with scorn and said: “It’s not luvly at arl.  It’s got a barldy heed ind nee teeth”


Little girl:-  “Teacher! Wi got a new baby last night.”

Teacher:- “Is it a boy or a girl, darling?”

Little girl :- “Well! Is neither yit. Yi see; its just cum.  Its a babby.”


The fancy dress.

Class: Junior girls.

Pupil:- “Teacher!  I’m going to a fancy dress ball on Saturday as Columbine.”

Teacher: That’s a good idea.

Another pupil:-  “I would hate to go to a dance as one of King Solomon’s fancy women.”

The teacher spent quite a while explaining the difference between the two words: Concubine and Columbine.


Causing. trouble.

Class: Reception.

Lesson: Chalk – drawing.

Little boy: “Me Da’s cumin up ti ye.”

Teacher:- ” Why ?”

Boy :- “Wey! Me Da says time – “By gosh!  If Ar catch ye, ganin about charkin arl owa agyen; ar’ll gi yi a good braying.”

“Ind ye are showin wi hoo ti dee it. Makin us chark.  Ee’ll be jumpin mad; when Ar tell im.”


A present for the teacher

A boy brought a pound of Sunlight soap and said:-“Teacha, Me Da sent this for ye”

The teacher was apprehensive, at this unusual gift and asked the reason why.

The child answered :- “Yi see. Me Dar’s pinched a geet whack off ee’s ship.  A fella hes tell him; that the pollis is camin ti wor hoose.  Wa hevin a narful botha to get rid on it.”

The teacher had no wish to be a recipient of stolen property.  She said:- “This soap is good for washing clothes, so I better not take it as I have not many clothes to wash.  You know, darling, it is stealing, when any-one takes what is not their own. It is not good. It is a sin.”

The boy left the soap on the school floor and the cleaner used it; not knowing where it had come from.


Count your blessings.

A little girl received a present of a puppy.  She asked her father how the doggy was black and white.

The father said: “Its mother was white and its father was black. This is their baby. It is pie – bald!”

The following day a little girl said: “Teacha! Me Ma’s got a new baby.”

Teacher said: “That is nice, dear?”

The child said: “Me Ma says it is dark; very dark. The owner of the puppy dog was keenly interested because she knew the fathers was a Merchant Mary coloured seaman and the mother; white.

She shouted: “Sarah! Is your baby the same colour arl ova?”

Sarah answered: Oh! Yis!

Then the owner of the puppy said: “Well! Tell ya Ma she’s lucky; cas, when the Da is black the baby might her been pie bald.”


What did he expect.

An excited little boy jumped up and shouted:- “How-way, Miss.   Teddy O Leary has laid an egg.”

On approaching Teddy, the teacher saw him gently ease himself up and then held out a crock egg.

He said: “Miss! Nee-body laid it.  Me Da bought it.  Its ti dupe wor hens.  They can dee nowt wid; so Ar was- seein if Ar cad dee owt.”

What did he hope? Teacher never asked.


A misunderstanding

One afternoon a child shouted “Please Miss Mary Scott said DAM.”

The teacher asked Mary if she had said this word and Mary said: “Yes, Miss.”

Teacher said:- “Darling” Don’t use that word. I don’t like it. It is a swear word.”

Mary looked up and said:- “Teacher! Ar wasn’t swearin. Ye telt wi ti tark swanky.  Ar was just tellin hur, the wife next door was deaf and dam. (dumb).”


Scatter seeds of kindness

Time:- (a) The afternoon following a scripture lesson:- Be ye kind one to another.
(b) The day after a lesson about an apple.
Two small boys rushed into the class room before school opened.

One thrust a wee grabby packet towards the teacher and said:- Wiv browt these for ye; cas wi want to be kind.”

The teacher said :- “What are they, dear?”

The other small boy said: “Yi see! Me ganny gis a hapny.  A bowt a napple.  Ar et it, but Ar left a big gowk for Stephie.  He kept arl the pips, end wiv browt thim arl ti ye.  Tha for ya arn sell.  Yi can grow luvly apple trees like wat yi telt wi.”

The teacher said:-  “Thank you, dears, you are kind”


A puzzle.

A work man hurried into school before nine o’clock and said:

“We teaches Richard (So and so)?”

A teacher belonging to the south of England said:- “I do.”
The workman then said:- “Ye watch ees bools.  Mind Ar’ve telt yi.  Ee’s had medicine” Then he hurried out.

The south country teacher looked amazed and said: “What does he mean?

A Tyne-side teacher said:- “He is telling you to allow Richard to go round the yard the moment he asks to leave the room; but if I were you, I would tell Richard not to bother to ask; but to go immediately he felt he wanted to do SO It would be safer for all concerned.”

The southerner said: “Thank you for the advice and interpretation.”



The knees of a small boy were very dirty. The teacher asked him, when his knees had been Washed.

He answered: – “Yisterda?”

The teacher said: “I don’t know how you get your knees so dirty in one day.”

The child answered:- “Ar get them dorty it neet.”

The teacher said:- “At night?”

The little fellow explained as follows: “Yi see: Ar sleep wi war Geordie.  He wipes his dorty feet on me”

The teacher said:- “Does your brother not wash his feet?”

The child answered:”Yis!  Sometimes!  Yi see, ees a big lad. He gans to work ind wears lang pants. Ne-body bothers men about clean feet or knees; when they gan ti work.”

The teacher wondered if the child wished to censure her.


Guy Fawkes Day.

Time. November 6th.

Teacher, “Robin! Stand up and give me a sentence about Guy Fawkes Day.”

Robin: – “I hate Say Fawkes Day.”

Teacher:-  “Why ?

Robin:- “Well: Ar joined a fire-works club. Ar put me pennies in for weeks ind weeks.  Then on Guy Fawkes day the wife in the shop gis a geet lot.  Ar browt thim arl yem.  Me Da tuk thim arl off is.  He sid to me: ‘Yi’ll burn ya sell.  Then he set thim arl off.  His arn-sell.  Next year, he can join the club he-sell; pay the money he-sell, ind gan for thim ees-sell; cas Ar’m not.”



Most likely

Time:-  Before welfare state. Dole unknown

The children had been learning the nursery rhyme:- “Hark! Hark! The dogs do bark. The beggars are coming to town.” etc.

Teacher said  “Ivy! Could you give me a sentence with the word beggars in it?”

Ivy stood up and said: “My Ma sarves all beggars”

Teacher said: “Not quite correct Ivy.”

An excited little boy jumped up and said:- “It’s ivry bit rang.  She lives on wor stair-heed, ind har mutha always shoots to the beggars:- Had away, hinny Wiv got nowt for wa-sells”



A teacher of uncertain age, whose hair was dark brown and worn in a bun on the back of her head, took a child behind the black board to fasten certain under garments, that had become undone.

The child saw a rook’s nest, in the cupboard.  It was upside down on the shelf.

The teacher was going to give a lesson on birds and their nests.

If you have ever seen a rook’s nest upside down you will know that, it looked awful.

The child pointed to it and said: “Oh!  Is that where yi keep ya utha bun, time ya weshin the one on ya heed”


Unkind Mother.

Lesson Conversation about mother.

Dinah said:- “My mother is a greedy woman.”

Teacher asked her why she said this

Dinah answered: “Well!:  She’s got teeth ind she’s bought some more, arl for ar-sell.  Wor poor babby hesn’t one tooth.”

Teacher said: “Your baby will get teeth; as it grows older dear”

Dinah: “for nowt?”

Teacher:-  “Yes, pet, they grow out of the baby’s gums.”

Dinah:-  “Oh!  That’s not se bad.”


Not English.

Lesson:-  Word building and speech training.  The children had boxes of letters, on one inch square card board.

A little girl said:-  “Teacher! A’ve made a four lettered word ind Ar can read it.”

The word was brew.

The teacher said” I think you are a clever little girl to read that word. Give me a sentence with the word brew in it”

The child answered:- “I tummelled doon and hurt my brew.”


It could be.

Lesson = Little children of hot countries

The teacher had hung before the class, a picture of children of Africa.

They were all naked and appeared very happy, as they played

The picture was really beautiful. After a short conversation about it the teacher said:”If you or I ran out of doors unclothed; we would probably get a very severe chill; unless it happened to be a warm sunny day.”

One little girl said :- “Teacha!  If you went out-side like that arl the lads wad chase yi, ind yi wild get locked up, afore yi had time ti get a chill.”


Father’s language.

The children were marching round the play-ground; when one bright youngster noticed the boy behind him was lagging far behind.  He turned and yelled: “How where; yi lazy beast”

Teacher said :”Harry. That is not the proper way to speak to William.  Speak the way your father does to you.  Harry instantly turned and shouted:-  “Cam on yi little divil.  Ar cannit wait arl neet for ye.”


Miners are not all alike.

Teacher was questioning her class after a lesson about bees.

She said:- “What is the name of lazy bees?”

Alice answered: Hewas are lazy bees.”

Teacher was astonished at this answer and asked “who told her that.”

The child answered:- “Me Ma!  Yi see wor Tommy’s a hewa, ind me Ma says that hewas must be lazy bees, if tha arl like him.  She hes a narful  botha wiv im.  He’ll not get up to gan ti the pit.”


Play- way P.T.

Teacher said:- “Children! We will have a lesson in, make believe.”

“I am supposed to be the farmer’s wife and you are my ducks and ducklings. When I walk away waddle after me for more food.”

The children began this mimicking; when one boy stood up and went beside the wall. She told the class to stand up and went to the boy.

She said:- “What is the matter, Alan? He answered;

“Nowt vit; but Ar’m not garn ti dee that daft stuff. yi wodn’t like wi arl ti gan bow-legged. Wad yi?”

Teacher said:-  “No Alan: I wouldn’t.  We never do it very long, because it is difficult.”

Alan then said:- “Ar’ll dee it, if yi like.”

Teacher said:”We have had enough for one day, dear”


The romance.

Mary and John, both under five years of age, were school friends.  They sat next to each other and played together in the school yard.

In school, Mary had attempted no individual work. One day, teacher said: “Mary, if you don’t try, you will never learn.  Try dear. Lazy people don’t try and I know you are not lazy.”

John looked at Mary and kindly said: “Mary! Ar cannit merry yi; if you lazy, like ya murtha”.

Teacher said :- “Don’t say that, John.

John looked up and said: “E!  Ar mutha’s arful. That’s nowt on the tyeble, when Ar Da cums in from work.  She tarks arl day.  Me Ma says :-‘Mony a man wud murda hur.’  Tark’! Tark!! Tark!!!”



Teacher on duty in the junior’s play ground, came upon two boys fighting.

She said: “Now You two; stop fighting!”

One said:  “It’s arl him.  He hit us forst.”

Teacher asked if this was true.  The other boy answered: “Yes Miss.” He carled me Gandhi legs.  Ar dain’t mind been carled Gandhi, cas he was a gud man, but his legs!!  His legs! Ar’ll hit him agyen, if he carls me that, cas Ar’ve got good shaped legs.”

She turned to the first boy and said. “You were in the wrong, because I read a book, where the writer said:-  ‘Mahatma Gandhi’s legs were as thin as heron’s stilts, through fasting.’  He fasted rather than fight for his people”

Both boys laughed and went away friendly.


Weighed down.

Teacher had told one of Rose Kyleman’s stories.  It’s title was: The WHIR WIND.

The story is about a small old Victorian lady who were a long full skirt over a crinoline, and carried an open green umbrella.  A sudden strong wind whirled her up as high as the clouds.  She had many and various experiences.

In the afternoon, one of little girls of the class was absent.  At dismissal, the teacher always saw her children safely away.  There was Gertrude, pulling a heavy sack towards the school gate.  Teacher said:-  “What have you got there?”  Gertrude answered: “Stones ind bits a brick.  Ar wasn’t garn ti be blarn up, like the wife yo telt wi aboot.”

The teacher emptied the contents, folded the sack, gave it to the child and said:- “Go home, dear.  It is tea-time.  You are quite safe.  We have no whirlwinds in our land.”

Gertrude:” All that botha for nowt. Yi should i telt wi; that wi had nyen I them things here.”

Teacher realized her sin of omission.


Father’s names

A little girl wandered into school alone. The head- mistress said:- “What is your name?” 

The child just looked at her, so she tried again: “What do the call you”  

The child answered, “Jane Ann” 

What else?” asked the mistress.  “Nowt else said the child.”

The mistress now said: “What is your father’s name ?”

Child:- “Me Da.”

Mistress.  “Yes! I know, but what does the woman next door call him.”

The child answered:  “Oh! Hur!  She carls him ivry thing she can think on”

The head mistress gave up the questioning, took her round the classes, until she found someone who knew her, as she was very young.


Most alarming.

A little boy was crying. Teacher said: ” What is the matter, dear?

The boy answered :- “Ar’ve swalleyed sum chow-gum.”

Wishing to comfort the child she said: “Never mind, dear. If you have swallowed it, you are quite alright. You see pet it is going further and further down every minute.”

The child screamed and shouted: “Aye! Am getting warsa ind warsa; cas the chow gam’s not mine. It’s his. He just lent ust.”

Teacher consoled him by giving the other little boy a half- penny, to buy more,



Teacher had shown a model of an Eastern Inn.  She then said: I want you to try and one on your black boards.  She looked at the drawings and said :- “Now. Rub Inn out.

Bright Thomas called out: “Hoo? Teacha. Hoo?”

Teacher looked at him, smiled and said: “Just clean your board and Inn will be rubbed out.”

Thomas said :- Ay! Ar see!. It sounds funny.  Ar’ll ask me Da that in. – “Rub Inn oot”


His accomplishment.

A little boy shorted: “Teacha! Me cousin Ronnie’s cummin ti school on Munda.”

Teacher:” Is he five, dear?”

Boy:- “Yes!  Ind ees cliva; far clivera than me.”

Interested Teacher:  “Oh! Can he read?”

Boy:-  “Oh no! Nowt like that; but he can gargle.  By; he’s good.  Me Ma says, many a man, cannit gargle like him.  Niva swalleys a drop.  Ar cannit dee that.”


Teacher was to blame.

It was the first lesson of writing on paper with lead pencils. The teacher noticed one little girl resting back in her seat.  She said to the child: “Nellie ; you’ll never be able to write, if you don’t try.”  

The child answered:- “Ar hev tried, but ye’ve given me a pencil that makes wobbly lines arl owa the shop.”

The teacher first looked at the pencil. That was alright.  She then said:  “Do this Nellie.  Copy what I do.  Close your fingers.  Open your fingers.  Then she placed the pencil in the correct position and showed her various directions in the air.  Down! Up! Slant! etc.  She then said: “Just do that on paper Nellie.”

Nellie still hesitated when Charles, who was her friend, said :”Gan on, Nellie.  Boss it, boss it! Ye are alive and its deed; make it dee wat yi want it.”

She then tried and did very nice writing.


Experience teaches

The young children had torn paper into strips to make toy sweeping brushes. 

Teacher said:- “Now children; you are going to stick your pieces of paper on to coloured card board and I will show you how to make toy brushes.”

A little girl said: “Teacha! Di wi clag thim wi spit?

A boy answered:-  “No, yi dafty! There’s the sarsas wi the condensed milk.”

He was disappointed when teacher told the class that the saucers contained Gloy.  It was not to eat or drink. It would be horrible; if they put it in their mouths; as it was sticky!

The boy was disappointed, but he still dipped in his fore finger and had a sly taste.


The present.

One of the youngest and poorest of the scholars presented her teacher with some flowers; all quite dead.

Teacher said: “Thank you, Lily. Have you had them in the house a long time?”

Lily answered: “No! Niva had thim in the hoose it arl.  Ar howked thim out iv the wife’s midden owa the road, for ye, afore the muck-men cum.”

Teacher said: “Don’t take all that bother dear, for me.”


A necessity

Teacher showed the children two lovely pictures, to illustrate the story of the ugly duckling. There was a beautiful white swan in the centre, with its cygnets and one dark little duckling.

She pointed to the swan and said: “Isn’t it beautiful? Isn’t it graceful?  Look at its lovely, long neck; so wonderfully curved while swimming.”

Little boy said:- “It hes ti hev  a long neck.”

Teacher said: “Yes dear, it has. I was going to tell the class the reason; but you tell them instead.”

The boy shouted: “It hes ti hev a long neck ti catch the lops unda its wings.”


She knew.

It was raining at recreation time; so teacher introduced a guessing game.

A child came in front of the class and made a sound like some bird or animal.

The one who gave the right answer in a sentence took the other child’s place. All went well until a little boy grunted like a pig.  The children were silent and mystified.

Then one little girl said:-  “Oh teacher; Ar know wat that noise is,”

Teacher said: “Tell us all, Marian.”

The girl’s face was wreathed in a smile, when she answered:- “It a Da, please Miss, soond asleep.”

72 .

Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder.

The children had said prayers. The teacher had talked about the power of prayer and quoted texts from the Bible.

At the end of the lesson one small boy said :-“If Ar was ye, teacha, Ar wud ask God to make yi a bit fatta.  Ya arfly skinny yi nar.  My Ma’s luvly! Like cushions yi nar.  Front ind back.”

The teacher said:”She must be nice, you will feel you are resting on a soft pillow when you sit on her knee .”

Little boy said :- “Ay! That’s reet! Ar luv ar. Ar dee.”


Not correct.

It was speech training lesson.  The daily war against Tyneside dialect was at its worst, during this lesson.

The teacher asked questions on well known subjects and aimed at answers in sentences of good English.

The children were all new scholars.

The teacher had asked a number of children the same question. She said to Walter: “What had you for dinner to-day?”

Walter answered:- “I had sassij ind tay-ties for my dinna”

Teacher said: “Sassij ind tay-ties. Those words are not correct English. Who knows what he ought to have said?”

A wee fellow shouted: “Dog ind spuds; Miss”

Teacher said: “Oh no! No!” Listen to me: “I had sausage and potatoes for my dinner, today.”

That sentence is English. Doesn’t it sound nice?

One little girl said: “Yis! It dis, but it takes owa lang”

One little boy said:”Arl the lads wild say wa Sissies ; if wi tarked like that.”

Teacher realized that Tyne-side was popular in this part of the town.


No need to sing.

The children had sung that beautiful little thanks giving hymn.

“Thank You! for the world so sweet.

Thank You!  for the food we eat.

Thank You for the birds that sing.

Thank You. God!  for every thing.”

A little boy said: “Wat di sing that for ?”

Teacher said: “We are thanking God for many things and for our daily food, dear.”

Then the small boy said:” Oh well! Ar needn’t sing it, cas me Ma pays money for wor food; but Jacky ill het ti sing it, cas his mutha gets arl theirs on tick.”


Just as useful.

Teacher remarked about the weather having changed, since the children came to school.

Oscar said: “Teacher; my daddy knew it would rain, because his barometer was falling. His father was manager of a well known public house.

Teacher said: “Oscar dear; you are a lucky little boy, to have a barometer in your house.”

A little girl said: “Wat hes he got, “Miss?”

The teacher said: “His father has a wonderful instrument. It shows when weather will change from dry to wet or other way about.”

The little girl then said :- “Oh well! My Ma can tell when its garn ti rain, ind she hes n’t got wat his Da hes.”

“How does your mother know, dear?” asked the teacher.

The child answered: “When hur corns gis ar jeep; shi nars its garn ti rain.”


Look out!

The teacher was telling a story. The head mistress needed two books; that were in the teacher’s desk.

She saw how enthralled the children were and did not wish to break the spell.

She tiptoed to the desk; took out the register and record book, silently closed the lid and left the room, without making a sound.

Up jumped an excited boy. He shouted: “Oh miss; yi want ti watch ya-sell. Time ya tarkin, the atha one s away wi ya byucks. Yi nar nee-body aboot here.  Thill tyeck the eyes out ya heed”


A story of a senior boy.

The boys were required to write a composition about any place of interest, visited on holiday.

One boy wrote about Edinburgh. He felt quite pleased at his composition and thought it was worthy of a merit mark.

Imagine his disappointment, when his book was returned to him. Not one word had need of correction.

At the end of the essay were two words :-

‘Childish wording’, written in red ink.

His next composition began like this:- “You’ve got no guts, you white livered cur.” He continued in Wild West language. The two words of adverse criticism had no need to be repeated.


The distant future.

The bowls of bulbs were placed on the classroom window sill, after they had shown their first shoots.

The teacher placed pictures of the flowers, the children hoped to see grow, on the wall below. The window faced North. Every Monday the bulbs were placed on the class-room table for observation and conversation.

After a few weeks, a little boy said:- “Miss! Ar think wi’ll het ti cum back ti scyull; when wa ard cheps wi barldy heeds; to see them things torn inti floo- ars.”

This remark, led on to the power of the sun.  The teacher and children moved them into a South room and they did see the flowers. They were so pleased about this wonder.


Beware of nurses.

The school nurse was passing through the classroom.  She stopped and said to a little girl:”I think I know you. Where do you live?”

The child answered :- “Am not garn ti tell yi.”

The nurse said: Why?

The child answered: “Well!”

After the nurse left the school, the teacher asked Joan; why she did not tell nurse where she lived. Joan answered:” Wey! A nurse browt a babby ti me Ma last week. Its arful!  It blares arl neet. Arm not garn ti tell ony nurse, where wi live; wi might get another.”

Me Da sid:- “One’s main than inough, sometimes.”



Lesson:-  Children of other lands.

The teacher put a picture of one most beautiful black child, before the class; then she showed another lovely picture of coloured children playing. She said to her class:” Look! The dear little darlings have no clothes; just a strap or two of beads.”

Now; it happened to be a day of keen frost and snow in mid – winter.

Before teacher could say more; a kindly voice shouted:-  “Oh! Aye! God help the poor bairns there, on a caard day like this.”


Irene’s illness.

A new scholar had been absent three mornings of her first week, at school.

The teacher sent for her elder brother and asked why she stayed away in the mornings.

The boy said: “Please Miss; she hes pneumonia.”

Teacher said: “Peter; that’s impossible. She couldn’t be well and happy in the afternoon, if she had pneumonia.”

The boy must have told his mother; because the girlie brought the following note that afternoon. “Please Miss; excuse Irene about the mornings. It’s the getting up. She has had old moania; what most bairns suffer from, when they first start school. I’m pleased to tell you, she is just about cured.”

Irene never stayed away again in the mornings.


Vivid imagination.

The teacher and children had used various apparatus to analyse numbers up to four.

Lesson was ended and apparatus packed away. Now come the test. Concrete to abstract.

Teacher said: “Nellie; if you bought four apples and found that two were bad; how many would be good ?”

Nellie did not answer ; so teacher said:-“Look; Nellie. Make believe you have four apples, dear, on your desk. Count, dear; one, two, three, four. Those two are bad, throw them out of the window and tell me how many are left?”

The child hesitated for a second and then said: “Ar betta not toss the bad uns oot the winda, cos the mistress ill play war wis; if Ar smash it.”

Teacher said:- “Just give the bad ones to me.”

Nellie said: “There’s two; dain’t eat thim”

Teacher was amazed when Nellie said: “Ye’ve got the two bad uns.  Ar’ve got the two good uns. That i’ll be four.”

There was no time for more children to be tested.


The winners.

A little fellow came into school very slowly. He was thirty minutes late.

Teacher said: “Hurry up, Percy. I don’t like slow little boys. I like race horses”

Percy looked up with a winning smile and said: -“Ya just like me Da. He likes race-horses anarl. Fast uns!  Yi loss ya money, if the slow uns. Arlways pick the fast uns, teacher.”


Rude names.

The Sunday before Palm Sunday was known, locally; as Carling Sunday.

Carlings are fawny grey dried peas. After steeping in water, children ate them raw or cooked. They were freely used as missiles, whether hand or soft.

On Monday following Carling Sunday, the teacher found one of her charges crying bitterly. She asked the reason and the child said:- “Wor Alfy pelted as wi carlins; hard carlins.”

Teacher went to him and said:- “Don’t hurt your little sister. You’ve hit her in the face with hand carlings.

The boy said: “Miss!” Sh’s cryin for nothin.  Me Ma says: Sticks ind stones ill break ya bones; but carlins won’t hurt yi.”

Teacher tried to explain that his mother was using Tyne- side dialect and her word- carlins, meant calling people rude names.


Three degrees

Class: Junior boys

The boys had been taught the three degrees of adjectives, Positive comparative and superlative.

The head-master looked at the record book and said to a boy: “James. Tell me the three degrees  of the word :- cold.”

The boy looked scared for a moment, then he said: “Cold – Cowld – Caard.” When he said Caard; he shivered.

The master said :- “That was certainly expressive; but not good English. The correct answer is :- Cold – Colder – Coldest.”


Easy money.

His Majesty’s Inspector came into the classroom said  Good morning to the teacher and then stood listening and observing.

After a while he went out else-where.

A little boy shouted: “Teacha! Whee’s that man?”

Teacher said: “He is the Inspector.”

The boy then said :- “Dis ee work?”

The teacher answered: “He is doing his work now. He goes from class to class, to see if the teachers are doing as he wishes.”

Boy: “Oh; Ar nar; but wat dis ee dee for money; for ees wages?”

Teacher, ” He get paid wages for what he is doing.”

Boy. “Ee! Its money for jam.  Arm garn ti be one i them, sum day.”


Where there’s a will; there’s a way.

Before P.T. shoes were provided by Education Authorities, teacher asked the children to try and get dancing slippers; as she was going to teach them dancing. She said:- “I don’t care how old they are, as long as you remove your outdoor shoes.”

Next afternoon; teacher said:”Now children; we are going to have our first dancing lesson. If you have brought slippers try and take off your boots and change. “

Suddenly a little girl shouted: “Teacha!  Will you put this bit a candle on the end of you polka, then shuv it aside the fire for a minute or two?”
This request amazed teacher and she asked why.

The child answered :- Wey; Ar’ve got nee slippers. The candle grease il be luvly, for making me stockings arl reet for dancing.”

It took some time to persuade the child not to bother about the candle grease.


The reward.

The head- mistress was a gifted musician. She was playing the piano and the children were singing.

Near the end of the lesson, she said :- ” I am so pleased, because you have all done your best. Just wait a moment and I will get my Schumann.

The children had been taught Schumann’s Cradle Song, out of the mistresses own book.

One wee girl said to her teacher: “Will wi arl get thim?”

Teacher said: “Get what?

Child answered: “Byuts. She’s away for a shoe-man.”

The child was so disappointed, when teacher told the wee girlie that Schumann was the name of a clever man who had made up some wonderful tunes.

In those days, the police had a fund; known as the Shoe-less Children fund to provide boots to all in dire need.


Oh dear!

A girl of five years of age, kept putting her fingers, into a small paper bag and patting her nose,

Teacher said:-  “What are you doing, Irene?”

Irene answered:- “Am putting sum bakin pooda, on me face, cas Av not got the reet kind.”

Teacher said: Irene, dear; little girls like you need but to be clean, to be beautiful.”

Irene answered:- “Big lasses use pooda; ind women anarl”

Teacher said: “Yes. I know they do.”

Irene then said: “Ye dain’t use pooda, teacha.”

Now teacher had a severe head cold. She smiled at Irene and said: “No darling; I use nothing but soap and water for my face.”

Irene looked up and said in a surprised tone of voice: “Oh! Ar thowt yi used forniture polish on ya nose, Miss.”


What he thought.

Lesson :- A garden.

The teacher finished the lesson about a garden feeling quite satisfied, that she had achieved her aim and had covered all uses of a garden .

She then said: “South Shields town’s council have built many new houses; some of which have very large gardens. Why?”

A little boy answered: “Mebbees tha ti bury tha deed folk in; when thiv niva paid the Insurance Man.”


Short, but complete.

H. M. Inspector said to the teacher of first year Junior boys:- “Give these boys compositions to exercise their imagination.  I find that girls are much better than boys at imagery; boys excel the girls at reality.”

The teacher gave a composition entitled :- “If I met a fairy.”

She said: ” Now don’t forget, it must have a a beginning and an ending. It’s a story.”

In a very short time the first boy finished. This was the composition :- “If I met a fairy I would fall down deed with shock.”

The Inspector was delighted; he said it proved his words.


Health, culture.

It was the custom, in the reception class, before dismissal after morning session, to give a few minutes chat on cleanliness .

One little boy of under five come to school unwashed, three afternoons in succession.

The head mistress said to him :- “Boy!  You are big enough to wash your-self. Never come here dirty again or I will wash you.”

The boy was grieved and rather afraid. When the mistress went out of the classroom; he said to his teacher :- “God will niva send a babby ti hur.”

The teacher asked why and he answered :- “Wey’ He’s got more sense. Babbies are always dorty- in tha sells.  She wid want the poor bairn ti wesh its arn-sell. “



Class = 3rd year juniors.

Teacher asked the class to write out six proverbs, as homework. This they did. She was looking through them and said:- “Here is a rather uncommon proverb: – Procrastination is the thief of time.  what does that sentence mean?”

A boy answered :- It’s like when your mother asks your father ti do something; like put the brush head on its shank, Ind he says :- “Yis! Ar will; but not noo – the morra.”

Then you mutha says: “Ay! Ar nar; but the morra niva cums.”


Word- building

The children were have free play; word-building with one inch square letters.

One little girl shouted: “Teacha!  Ar’ve made a four lettered word.”

Teacher went to the child’s table and saw t-o-o-l. The child read tool.

The teacher said: “Can you give me a sentence with the word tool in it?”

Child answered :- “My Ma bought a new tea-tool, last Sarrada.”


Where ignorance is bliss.

The teachers often had caps of tea, during morning recreation time.

The prefect of standard four girls’ washed the tea-pot .

The spout was broken. It was war-time; so one of the staff fixed a rubber one.

This was quite satisfactory and had been in use a good while; when the prefect came to the teacher in a distressed condition and said: “Miss!’ A’ve lost the bit of rubber, down the lavatory; when Ar was emptying. the tea- pot.”

The teacher said: “Oh. It can’t be helped. These things do happen.”

The girl answered :- “Yes Miss! It’s happened many and many a time; but I’ve always managed to get it up.”


Quite possible

Story told by H.M. Inspector during the craze of correlation of lessons, in infants’ departments.

Class had observation lesson about the robin. They had modelled a robin, drawn a robin and were beginning a painting lesson; when teacher said to her class: “I wonder if any of you know, what we are going to paint today?”

One boy was heard to whisper to his neighbour:- “It’ll be that da — d robin again.”

He was right!


Two whites don’t make a black.

A South Shields white woman, married to a South Shields white seaman, brought a five year old child to school to be admitted. The child was coloured with woolly curls. The mother had other children at the school and the mistress knew the family.

The mistress said: “Is he your child?”

The mother said. “Yes! Yi see, me man goes ti sea; ind Ar had a narful gliff afore this un was born.”

The mistress said: “I expect you got another gliff; when he was born.”

The mother answered: “Ar did anarl; ind the second was warse thin the forst.”



Class: 3th year junior boys.

The teacher was nearing retiring age, when the lady physical training specialist visited the school. The teacher asked the lady; if she would demonstrate down-ward jump, forward roll etc to the class.

She kindly did so; – perfectly.

Afterwards the teacher said:- “I do hope you closely watched Miss (so and So) and noticed any difference between her demonstration and mine.”

One boy said :- “I noticed she had short fancy knickers and yours are navy blue with lastic in.”

Teacher blushed and said :- “I know that’s true about mine, but I didn’t notice the physical training expert’s under garments.”

Quite a number of boys said :- “Oh! It true about hers, too.”



Graduation day.

It was the last day of the school year.  It was nearing putting up time, as our little people name it.

One clear little girl began to cry and kept repeating these words to her teacher:” Ar dain’t want to gan in the utha class.”Yi neva hit us. Ye-N-I-V-A  hit us.”

Before teacher managed to comfort her, her little friend said:” Shu-rap!  Yi nar, she plays merry war; when wi dain’t dee what sh tells wi. How- way!”

Many dried her eyes, went to the next class and left behind a teacher who felt ashamed.

She resolved to try and never again play merry war with her little charges. Try! Try! Try!!!

Did she achieve this sweet serenity she so desired?

Give a guess. You’ll probably be right.


An Inspectress was observing a harassed teacher of a large class; busy with small mixed children.

H.M.I. said: “There is no need, for a teacher of an omnibus class to wear herself out, physically.” “When one child understands the aim of the lesson, use that child as a helper, to teach another or others.”

There were twin girls, of five years, in this class. One was strong and quick, the other delicate and slow.

The teacher printed four look and say words on paper, give it to the quick one who knew the words and said: “Take your sister over to that desk and teach her those words.”

Very soon screams were heard from that section of the room. Teacher hurried over to the twins and said: “What is the matter?.”

The quick one answered:-  “Oh! A’ve telt ur, ind A’ve telt ur, till A’m sick ind tired. Shi disn’t nar thim yit; so A’vex givin hur a jolly gud hammarin.”

Teacher caressed and comforted the delicate and slow child and quietly reproved the quick and strong one.

Knowledge is necessary; but patience and sympathy are well worth cultivating to be a successful teacher.

School-yard chants.

1.  “Swank-pot, swank-pot ; yi needn’t wag ya tail.
   Ya coat’s in the pan- shop, hangin on a nail ”

2. “Telly- pie-tit! Telly- pie tit! Yor tung ill be slit,
     ind and the little bords , ill hev a little bit.”

3. “Billy Billy Buck. The game’s smashed up
    arl through a gobby, seabby spoil sport.”

4. “ For shame; for shockin; this a hole in ya stockin;
  if Ar was ya mutha, ad bray ya bare bottom.”

5. “A pin a prog in; a pin a prog oot;
    ind get a bonny pickcha out this book.”

6. “The morra’s the fair. Will arl be there, ti see Billy Purvis, wi lily white hair; trains, ships wi paper sails, ind little black horses wi hairy tails.”

7. It’s the twenty fourth i May.  It’s the Queen’s borth-day ; if yi dain’t gi wi hallida will arl run a way.

8. It’s raining! It’s raining! It’s raining on the rocks. Arl the little ladies ar liftin up tha frocks.

9. Rain! Rain! Poo-a-doon. Let me mutha wesh ar goon.

10. Scrush i the c-o-r-n-a; keep ya-sell w- a- r-m-a.

The end.

This is what the exasperated cobbler threw at the person who quarrelled with him. The last!

Collected to hurt none; but to interest some.

The origin of dialect is an interesting study.

Oh! What would the world be to us;
If the children were no more?
We would dread the desert behind us,
More than the dark before.

Robert Browning said :- “Open my heart and you will see – Graved inside of it :- Italy.”

Telly-pie-tit, with apology to Robert Browning writes: “Open my mind and you will see :- Impressed through out it :- “TRINITY.”

Yes! Holy Trinity Church School, South Shields.

Jane Elizabeth Carr (nee Summerbell)
Jeanne Bennett (Granddaughter)
Patricia Rigg (Granddaughter)
Terry Ford

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