A friend gave me a stack of pages from an old first grade primer from1952. It was a blast from the past for me because I remember learning to read from books just like it. A lot of folks don't know that the Dick and Jane books were adapted for use in Catholic schools in a different incarnation entitled Fun With John and Jean. Some of the characters are the same - Mother, Father, Spot and Puff show up unchanged. The children are evidently in some sort of parochial school witness protection program and show up as John, Jean and Judy. Some of the stories are identical to Dick and Jane, but there are a lot of ecclesiastically approved stories, too. The children enjoy the Nativity and John feels compelled by God to confess to some mischief he has perpetrated. The illustrations are utterly charming. Here's an example:
I really wanted to do something with the pages I had. I have access to a machine which makes 2-inch badges, so I picked out some of my favorite illustrations and used them to make pin-back badges. I love them!
I have been wondering, though... I was there in the thick of the Catholic baby boomers. I can't think of any families in our school with only three children. Five or six was probably the most common number. I can only guess that a few more children followed in line after cute little Judy.