Personal tools
You are here: Home Stories How I arrived in Davis
Document Actions

How I arrived in Davis

Jobyna Kingsbury-Gankin came to teach in Davis but there was no place to live.

Submitted by:  Jobyna Kingsbury-Gankin, November 13, 2007
This story relates to past
Category(ies):  Schools, Neighborhoods
In February 1955, I was practice teaching a kindergarten class in Berkeley when the Superintendent of the Davis Unified School District came scouting for a teacher. That was Friday and he wanted me to start teaching in Davis on Monday. Over the weekend the Superintendent went from house to house in Davis ringing doorbells trying to find someone who had a bedroom for me. Finally, a single woman took me in temporarily. There were only two apartment buildings in Davis at the time - one on "C" Street and one on University Avenue.
Kindergarten children seem to remember forever the dress you wore the first day of school. In those days we teachers had to wear dresses, stockings, and high heels. My stockings always caught on the rough chairs and ran. One day another teacher and I decided to wear sandals to school. The next day a note circulated around the schools - no sandals! My Berkeley teacher instructed me not to wear brown or black; to wear colorful clothes and change often, because children need cheerfulness. So after a week one of the kindergartner girls asked me if I threw away my clothes every day. I had overdone my lesson.
There were so many wonderful things about teaching at East Davis School (Valley Oak), only one year old at the time. It was like one big family. The 6th graders on their own came in after school (many had brothers or sisters in my class) and offered to help me clean up, washing the brushes and always keeping the paints clean and fresh with only the primary colors so that the children could discover for themselves the magic of mixing colors. The night before Open House the 6th graders would come to school to help me. It was their way of having a night out with their friends - a party. But I kept them busy!


This site provided with the assistance of the Davis Community Network.