Circa 1950-1960

1950’s -Excerpts from past pupils

Go to school to eat your lunch,

Chase the girls

And come home again!

For those kids who misbehaved they got the ‘Razor Strop’, it hung on a hook on the wall.

It was used like a belt to hit the offending one on the hand. The teacher would hold onto your out­turned hand and hit it hard with the strop. But, sometimes if you were quick enough you could whip your hand away just in time and the teacher’s hand would get hit instead!

(A Razor Strop was a piece of leather about 50mm wide x 5mm thick used in the old days to sharpen cut-throat razors hence the name).

I remember Mr Buchan who would use a pointing stick for the blackboard he would also hit the front of your desk.

We had wooden desks with a small hole in the corner for our ink well, and if we were feeling a bit mischievous we would put the ink well on an angle and when he hit our desk the ink would splatter everywhere! That would really make him fume!

We used fountain pens and by Std 6 we were getting up to a bit of mischief so when the teacher wasn’t looking we would empty the ink into his pocket! Then we playa game where we would count the weeks until the ink had been washed out of his trousers.


Ben Young – attended Mauku 1955-1962

I’m the youngest member of our family of eight all of whom who attended Mauku. 4 sisters and 3 brothers (Eilleen, Molly, Rosie, Julie, Ted, Willie, Howe). My 4 girls Tracey, Sarah, Nicole & Courtney all went there too.

At school I enjoyed the ‘Inters ports’ which was when we played Athletics against other local schools, I was a pretty good runner and would quite often come first. I don’t remember having pets for calf club but I did have a Lamb once. For the indoor section one of things we did was create dried arrangements collected from native plants. There was a cup called the ‘Hill Cup’ which was awarded for this and I also got given a timber bowl made from native timbers, which was presented by Mrs Hill *(see note 1 below)

In our senior years (Std 5 & 6) once a week we would go on the old Reo T Bus (with the door that opened outwards) to a Waiuku School, the boys to Tech (Woodwork) and the girls to cooking classes.

Down at Mauku Hall I used to enjoy the folk dancing, it was a lot of fun. We had some good times there.

*Notel: Mrs Hill and her husband Arthur Hill lived on the main Rd, not far from Titi Rd (on the property where Bryan and Jan Day now own). Mrs Hill was an avid plant enthusiast and on their property was a large area of virgin native bush. The Mauku school children would make field trips to the bush when they were working on native plant projects and Mrs Hill would help the children to identify different plant species.


Noel Chalmers attended Mauku 1954-1960

When our family came back to Mauku in 1954, one of the classes was being held at the Mauku Hall, as there were too many children for the two rooms of the original school.

Mrs Pleydell was still teaching – she had taught my father in the 1930’s. Mr Buchan was the headmaster. Mr Brooke took over after Mr Buchan retired. In 1960, Mr Brooke was ill and we had Mr. Patience take over for the last term. I recall that Mr. Patience cut back on the subjects and eliminated everything except English and Maths. He also enjoyed tennis, and we had extra long lunch breaks playing tennis across the road at the tennis courts.

I remember the school vegetable gardens that we had – especially the day when I was running to start weeding my garden, tripped and cut myself on the broken push hoe that I was carrying.

Calf Club was a highlight of the early years. I still have the ribbons that my calf and I won over the years. Yes, I was lucky enough to have the champion calf one year.
The content of these pages were originally published in “The History of Mauku” 2009, and have been reproduced with permission of Mauku Cricket Club & Mauku Primary School.