Some educational implications of a rural environment

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Golding, A. E.

The absolute isolation of the rural areas of New Zealand has undoubtedly disappeared during the last few decades, due, in the main, to modern trends and scientific inventions, and partly to the changing outlook of the people whose vocations cause them to settle in country or rural districts. Although there may have been a drift to the cities and large towns in recent times, this has not brought about greater differences between rural and urban environment. Motor-cars, radio, the cinema, consolidated schools, University extension, school dental and medical services, women’s organizations of various kinds, farmers’ unions, all have tended to bring closer inter­ course between rural and urban areas. However, it must not be thought that there are no differences, that city dwellers and country folk are of the same mind concerning everyday problems, that the environment of the city child and the country child is alike. These differences are still very great, and, from an educational point of view, are very worthwhile studying, to endeavour to find out the differences, the advantages and disadvantages of the rural environment of country children today. In the search for data, a typical mixed farming area will be taken, and, although rather small on which to formulate accurate conclusions, the size of the district, the varied occupations of the people, and heterogeneous types of children will enable fairly broad conclusions to be reached.

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