Remember This…

imageI was a first grader in 1979.  I can picture my classroom, with its wooden desks strictly lined in rows and columns.  I remember what my reader looked like, as well as my workbooks where I lovingly wrote word after word neatly on the line.  I remember my classmates and how we clapped erasers, hung upside down from the monkey bars, and skipped rope at recess.  I remember that year well.

At least, I think I do.

As people talk more and more about the upcoming solar eclipse, it brings to mind a vague memory I have of being in first grade and being told that something special was going to happen with the sun.  I remember we were told quite sternly that it was extremely dangerous to look at what was about to happen–so sternly that I did not dare even sneak a peek.  I didn’t want my eyeballs to be burned out!  In my memories, we used a piece of paper or maybe cardboard and a pinhole to somehow watch the eclipse happen in our hands.  I can even remember being outside with my classmates, excited and nervous that I might accidentally have a wild impulse to look upwards and lose my eyeballs altogether.

I wasn’t sure if any of this really happened, or if I was confusing my memories with another story about classrooms of children going out to see the sun.  But today I saw a short video of a newscast about the last solar eclipse we had–in 1979!  The dates match up with my first grade year, so I have a little more faith in my memory of experiencing the solar eclipse with my classmates.

Now if I can just figure out that cardboard–pinhole–thing…




  1. Peg Frushour · August 2

    I remember doing this also. A sheet of cardboard backing with a pin hole in it. The sun shines thru the hole and onto a 2nd sheet of paper as I recall.


  2. Sandy Hamilton · August 3

    I remember it happening when I was in 4th grade & it was extremely fearful then!


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