Valentine’s Day

Valentine's Day

Though much of modern history, we have set aside February 14th as a special day to collectively show our love and affection to those we fondly regard in our lives. For the adults of the world, it's a day of chocolates and cupids, of roses and romance, of candlelight dinners and diamonds. For the younger among us, things have always been a bit more innocent and, thankfully, inexpensive. But, whether you loved it or loathed it as a kid, the mere mention of Valentine's Day is certain to bring back memories of crushes and candy and classroom activities - childhood traditions that endure to this day. Continue reading...

Crayola Crayons

crayola crayons

Long before most of us were entrusted with things like paint and permanent markers, those wishing to explore their artistic talents were limited to the simple, non-toxic pleasures of crayons. And there is simply no other brand that ever came close to capturing this market like Crayola. With their rainbow of vivid colors, and an intoxicating smell that still lingers in the minds of many, Crayola is now synonymous with the crayon and, as such, accompanied just about all of us through our pre-adolescent creative endeavors. Today, we take a look back at one of the most iconic drawing tools ever to land in a child's hand. Continue reading...

The School Nurse

The School Nurse

She was the caretaker, the warden, the sweet woman who held all of the cards. She could bandage you up when you took a nasty spill on the playground, or, more importantly, grant you a reprieve for the day. She was the school nurse, entrusted with the health of the children and given the unenviable task of deciding who was really sick and who was faking. Let's take a loving look back at this essential caregiver from our childhood. Continue reading...

Snow Days

Snow Days

Bing Crosby may have dreamed of a white Christmas, but if you were a kid who lived where it snowed, you dreamed of white school days. It was an unexpected vacation, maybe one day, maybe a week; it all depended on how much of the white stuff fell from the sky. Let's look back at this beloved winter surprise. Continue reading...

School Scents

School Scents

It is truly amazing to consider the role that scents play in our ability to recall the past. One whiff of a certain smell can transport us right back to our childhood as if it were yesterday. And when posters on Retroland were once asked to name their favorite scents from their school days, they weren’t shy about voicing their opinions. Here are the five fragrances that were most often mentioned. Continue reading...

Dodgeball

Dodgeball

Dodgeball is a game that kids either love or hate. It all depended on whether you perceived it as chance to prove your superiority, or simply as a brutal hour of being mercilessly pursued by flying rubber projectiles. Either way, we can all agree that it was one of the most memorable parts of gym class. Continue reading...

Ditto Paper

Ditto Machine

Kids now-a-days don’t even know what they’re missing with their fancy Xerox and digital copy machines, but students of a bygone era can recall the bluish-purple print and unforgettable aroma of a freshly printed page of ditto paper (Perhaps "Ditto" wasn’t the name your school used; some called it a "spirit duplicator"). Once part of the daily scholastic routine, technology would eventually lead to the extinction of these fondly remembered machines and the paper they produced. Continue reading...

Trapper Keeper

Mead Trapper Keeper

One of the keys to scholastic success is to stay organized. And, thanks to the folks at Mead, students from the 70s and 80s could count on a nifty little helper to keep all those notes and assignments in their proper place. Introduced in the late 70s, the Trapper Keeper quickly became the organizer of choice for millions of students, who still fondly remember filing away their school work into the confines of this handy device. Continue reading...

First Day of School

First Day of School

For millions of kids around the country, September traditionally marks the end of one of the most beloved traditions of childhood, summer vacation, and begins a new year - with new teachers, new desks, new lockers, and perhaps even new friends. It could be invigorating or traumatic, short or long, but there was no mistaking its significance - another year older and soon to be wiser. That's right, we're talking about the first day of school. Continue reading...

Pee Chee Folders

Pee Chee Folders

Doodling says a lot about one’s sensibility. Hearts and flowers? Maybe you’re in love. Jagged gashes and heavy, diagonal scribbles? Sorry to see you’re having such a bad day. Snarky, naughty pictures? Well, we know what kind of a fellow you are! You’re the kind of fellow who adorned the jocks on his Pee Chee folders with odd-shaped genitalia (that is, before you scribbled on top of it. Nobody wants to risk detention.) And for many students from decades past, the canvas of choice was the Pee Chee Folder, one of the most fondly-remembered school supplies of all time. Continue reading...