About the Book

Grace Morton, One-Room Schools, 1 room schoolhousesGrace: a teacher’s life, one-room schools, and a century of change in Ontario
Grace unfolds the stories of a young girl who grew up on an Ontario farm in the early part of the twentieth century. At that time, there were more than five thousand one-room schools dotting Ontario’s landscape. Most children walked to a school where one teacher taught eight grades in a single room.
Grace taught children who wrote on slates and children who used typewriters and computers. During the 1920s and 1930s, she taught in small communities near Havelock, Norwood, and Stirling. She boarded near the school, and participated actively in the life of the community. After marriage and years at home raising children, she became one of the first mothers in her area to accept a full-time position – again in a one-room school.
Her lessons went far beyond the classroom. She was a local leader and drama coach. She gave talks and recitations that both entertained and offered lessons for life. She wrote poetry to celebrate local occasions and share her thoughts.
Grace Morton’s life (1907-2008) illustrates the important role teachers played in Ontario’s history. It offers much to ponder.
For a copy of Grace, signed by the author, or information on purchasing, please leave a reply below or send an email to:
(Your email will not be published.)
Also available is a list of places where the book can be purchased. Grace: a teacher’s life  is 246 pages in length with 40 photos and illustrations, including her first teaching contract (1928) and an inspector’s report (1935). It retails for $25.00.


One thought on “About the Book

  1. Ann Knop

    I adored reading your book. Our mother attended a one room school, the Marsh school west of Millbrook and had many tales of getting there through the open snowy fields. We had an aunt who attended Normal School in Peterborough as well. I donated a year book with a class picture she was in in 1917 to the Peterborough Museum. Her name was Kate Foster. I’m sorry to say that I do not know all the schools she taught at in her early years. I do know that she taught Grade 8 and was principal at the Orono Public School until her retirement in 1958. She also went on to have a long busy retirement and lived to be 93. Many of her pupils came to a gathering we held for her 85th birthday and had wonderful praise for her. I only got to know her in the last ten years of her life. Thank you so much for your wonderful depiction not only of school life but of everyone’s life in general in those days. Ann (Foster) Knop

    Hi Ann,
    Thank you so much for sharing what “Grace” meant to you. You have articulated why I felt compelled to write my mother’s story. School and daily life are constantly changing. How can we understand today without understanding how it used to be?
    Your mother, Grace, and many other teachers made enormous contributions to education and community life. By writing “Grace,” I hope I have given them some of the recognition they deserve.
    On this last day of 2015, your letter has warmed my heart.
    Wishing you all the best and a Happy New Year.
    Millie Morton


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