From Pandemic to Pandemic (1920-2020): Celebrating Emily Olive Bain’s 100th Birthday

Emily Bain, resident Willow Lodge in Tatamagouch, Nova Scotia celebrated her 100th birthday.

Born just as the second wave of the Spanish Flu ravaged Nova Scotia, Emily seemed destined to show the world that tragedy is not permanent and how one fills the time between tragedies defines the life of an individual.

A life-long learner, Emily saw education as the great liberator and books as its guiding force. 

Through scholarships and dogged determination, she put herself through teacher’s college at a time when women were supposed to be looking after households and knitting socks for the men overseas. 

With that same determination she crafted inspiring lesson plans for her many students of all ages in the public-school setting and after retirement in her own home. 

The consequences of her labor have resulted in testimonies from former students such as: “One of the best teachers I ever had,” “I will always remember when Mrs. Bain taught me,” “She made me work, but it was fun.”

Throughout her many years of teaching, she developed strategies that she continually employed and can be documented in statements. Always enter a teaching situation prepared and planned. Always ensure your students know who is in charge. Choose your battles carefully. Never place a student in a situation they cannot escape.

Although her years of teaching elementary students in a regular classroom brought her satisfaction, it was not until she earned her diploma in music education that she also experienced joy in her career. 

In fact, such joy that she immediately returned to her teaching duties after the cancer death of her beloved husband of twenty-four short years.

Such devotion and inspiration are best captured by the words of Plato whose thoughts bear timeless relevance and show us the way forward in these now troubled times.

“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything.”

Love: Avery Bain and the entire family