Posted on April 19, 2014
Dr. Dorothy Koehring was my first teacher. She was a small woman in her late fifties with gray hair and kind eyes. She taught nursery school and kindergarten, and we all loved her.
My sister, Barbara, would walk me up the little sidewalk to the Iowa State Teachers College campus. Mother would say, "Take Randall by the handle and lead him off to school." My dad asked me what I did at school, and I said I played and played and played.
Iowa State Teachers College was one of the premier colleges in the country for the training of teachers. Its mission was to prepare young men and women to become teachers. My dad was a professor at the college.
To achieve that mission the college had to teach students how to teach. For that purpose a laboratory school was developed where college students could develop their skills. As a child I attended that school from nursery school through high school. My teachers were all professors at the college and most of them had a Ph.D. They taught both at the college and at the Lab School. Many times there would be college students observing the classes I was attending. My teachers were actually teaching two classes at the same time, one for my classes and the college students who were observing. It was a school within a school.
I have been in school since I was four years old as a student and as a teacher for forty six years. My grandmother was a teacher, my mother taught in a community college, and my dad was a professor, and my brother and his wife were teachers as well. Most of my best friends were teachers.
Iowa State Teachers College became the State College of Iowa, and later the University of Northern Iowa. The university has grown tremendously. The little cottage on the campus is long gone.
I'm sitting in my computer room listening to some BLUES ROCK on my iPhone and remembering Miss Koehring, Dr. Paul Brimm, Mardell Mohn, Mrs. Blackman, Bud Happ, Dwight Curtis, Corrine Harper, Howard Vanderbeek, Marguerite Struble, Al Moon, Marshall Schools, Al Potter, Mrs. Holmberg, John Aldrich, Thomas Wikstrom and Ross Nielson
From my yearbook: "The Malcolm Price Laboratory School is an important part of the Iowa State Teachers College. It is here in the Laboratory School that the college students who plan to become teachers have practical, first-hand experiences in the learning to be teachers. We, all of us, have a responsibility to help them in every way possible to become good teachers for the boys and girls in the state of Iowa."



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  1. Walter Hyde | Feb 22, 2017
    I  Was  from the  Class   of  1964  !!  When  Randy was  Giving the  Names of the  TEACHERS  in the  Day  , I , Had to Remember  back & I as  Well  remember with  GREAT  Fondness  MY  MENTORS  !!  This  Article  Brought back to Me Many  Great  MEMORIES  .
  2. Marna Lou (Prior) Xanos | Feb 21, 2017
    I also attended the "Little White Cottage on Campus" it was situated beside the circle drive that entered the campus from the south, past the Green house and Sabin Hall with a short drive around to the Cottage.  I attended Nursery School and Kindergarten there.  They had a big picture window in front until John Duffery did a cartwheel inside and went right through the window. After which he was whisked off to his Dad's Doctors office and patched up.  The window was filled in shortly after words.
     They served us lunch and we took naps on rugs on the floor after a canned Juice drink.  I remember being served Liver for lunch one day and we were told to eat all of the food on the plate or we couldn't play.  I do not like Liver and I sat there on the porch, with that plate next to me all afternoon watching the others play. 
    They had giant blocks to climb on in back of the school.  My teacher was Miss Bruger.  This school is where we were introduced to musical instruments By Melvin Schneider and his wife.  My instrument was the cello to play, I was 4 1/2 when I started to play cello and to learn how to write songs and read music.  We had an orchestra, and played in quartets, and preformed for the women's club and other groups.  There were 13 of the Class of 1958 that started at the Campus Nursery school and went through our Senior together.  All of us were part of the Orchestra through 12 grade. 
    Such fun memories...  Oh yes, the instruments were furnish for us. Our education was FREE.

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