[picture]Lincoln School
The Lincoln School (1917-1940) of Teachers College, Columbia University, was a university laboratory school set up to test and develop and ultimately to promulgate nationwide curriculum materials reflecting the most progressive teaching methods and ideas of the time. Originally located at 646 Park Avenue in New York, one of the most expensive pieces of real estate in the city, the Lincoln School was also a training ground for New York City's elite, including the sons of John D. Rockefeller, Jr., who provided the additional funding over and above that provided by the General Education Board. Among the school's chief architects were Charles W. Eliot, a former president of Harvard University and an influential member of the New England Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools; his protege Abraham Flexner, a member of the controversial Rockefeller philanthropy, the General Education Board; Otis W. Caldwell, a professor of science education at Teachers College and the school's first director; and the dean of Teachers College, James E. Russell.
In the 1920s and 1930s the Lincoln School was the most closely watched experimental school in the educational world, making solid contributions in the work of laboratory schools. It provided a select number of Teachers College students with clinical teaching experience, engaged in curriculum design and development, and provided an observation and demonstration site for teachers from around the United States and abroad. Its own experimental research institute promoted staff development and student teaching, and it distributed its printed materials in national journals and in mass mailings to schools throughout the United States.
Caldwell and his staff constructed an interactive or "experience" curriculum designed to relate classroom materials to the realities of everyday urban-industrial as well as agricultural life. Science and mathematics courses emphasized the practical application of these subjects to life in the contemporary world. Students learned through nonacademic community resources--the fire department, markets, churches, transportation and communication facilities that were used as models for the reorganization of school life, and through music, language, art, and social studies where students imbibed principles that, in the language of the school's literature, were "foundational to effective and upright living."
This Lincoln School sub-pocket contains numerous original documents that provide insight into the daily running of the school such as correspondences between staff & faculty, budgets and meeting minutes from various committees associated with the school and the Teachers College Board of Trustees. The sub pocket also includes items that document some of the major incidents in the schools, life ranging from various reports & surveys conducted, its proposed merger with the Horace Mann School (see also Unification, Consolidation & Resolution) and the lawsuit (Elliott Vs. Teachers College) that ensued in response to this proposal.
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