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For the Schoolmaster.
ing it up before their little audience, explain Primary Education.
where it was found, how it is found, and then Nature is undoubtedly her own best inter- that the stone is useful to man, that the rose
if they wish to draw a moral lesson, tell them preter, and if we would accept her teachings, gives him pleasure and beauty, and that like the closely following her steps and making our art
stone and rose they should be useful and beaua co-worker with her, half our lost time, half our exhausted patience, might be spared.
tiful. Every eye is attracted, every whisper
hushed - they understand him. Much has been done for our higher schools and colleges, but how few ever stop to think
Now, the only difference is, one man is a phithat if the mird of youth were properly trained losopher and the other is not. One has made a the colleges would take care of themselves. In- loving study of nature, and consents to speak deed, more interest has been lately felt in our
in her simplicity, and wait till she develops the primary schools, but a careful, earnest study of
bud, blossom and fruit, before he speaks the childish capacity, a zealous endeavor to kindle language of art to them, or theorizes on moral childish interest in their daily tasks is an unre
responsibility. cognized necessity among us. The child is ear
In our rules, in our plans for school governly taught that his parents and teacher keep him ment, we make the greatest of all mistakes; in school for his good ; that he must learn to sit we leave nature out of our calculations. In the very quiet; read his lesson so many times a
first place, half our time is given to the disciday; learn to spell so many columns of words pline of the body. It must be kept still — the in a given time, and if he ever shows disgust at young, growing limbs kept in a contracted pothe uninteresting formula, he is held up as an sition for six hours daily, — a penance I am example for all others to avoid. But what child afraid few adults would bear better than these was ever satisfied with this? Who that has little martyrs — I call them martyrs, for I have taught does not remember many a speaking face, known cases in which I actually believed them many an enquiring eye, turned towards him, full to be such. Nervous children, whose organisms of cager interest as some little story is told, or required only pure, bracing air, dying because some object described ? Who does not remem- a proud parent glories in his child's precocity. ber the original questions the little ones ask, What are we to do, it may be said, that is not and if kindly and properly answered would do our fault. Let such a child vary his hours of more for the child's education than forty pages
school-room study with some pleasing book of spelling unwillingly learned. But some one
no matter if he twists on his seat a little. If objects – - " These questions ruin the order of he becomes nervous, consider that nature is pro
This objection is founded on a testing against your rigid rule, and let him play false idea of order and discipline. The world ten minutes in the school yard. is full of the noise of labor. No one objects
I think this adaptation to childish powers that the spindles make such a noise in a factory. should pervade every study and every spoken Where there is activity there is always bustle. word. One little girl came to me lately, and Let the children ask all the questions they will, asked the meaning of "axiom.” I smiled as I give them all the information you can
- describe thought of my utter incapacity to explain it, places, animals to them. Depend upon it, these and yet the word was in her spelling lesson. facts you give them will develop more original Nevertheless, to see the effect, I gave her the thought, give a heartier impulse to their mind,
definition - " It is a self-evident truth.” The and in turn reäct upon yourself with a genial child looked up with a sort of vague wonder glow of satisfaction.
and said -“I don't know now any better." We mistake in that we have always expected I would have every teacher devote more time too much of childhood. It is a notable fact to the objective than the subjective.' Teach that we never realize its simplicity - its inabili- children less about duty and obedience, which ty to grasp an abstraction. We bring the child have become hackneyed and powerless — make up to our level, instead of lowering ourselves them love to hear you talk about the world to his. I have heard gentlemen discourse learn- around them, and let them ask questions, and I edly to children at examinations, on their high believe the fear of being deprived of one promprivileges as if one child in ten knew what ised explanation, or picture, or story will keep a privilege was. Again, I have seen others them in better order than the frequent applicabring in their hand a stone or a rose, and hold-Ition of the rod. I have heard many teachers
M. C. P.
BY C. H. MURRAY.
complain : “ I am discouraged ; I talk and talk, proves by culture. It can almost be said, that and it is like the blowing of the wind.” Was our characters are but a reflection of what we it not that they did not try nature's philosophy: have associated with. If you give the mind
beauty to play upon, the familiarity will soon
lead to the production of happier thoughts, anů
more exalted desires. Our school-rooms, then,
pearance of a comfortable, or respectable home. How many teachers are there in the State Their bare, blank, monotonous walls, should be that love a picture? or that can discover the furnished. They can be, wherever there are sentiment expressed in a statue? or direct the teachers of any ambition and public spirit. Let attention of their pupils to an observance of the this begin in our cities and towns.
At present beautiful in nature and art? I have no doubt we have nothing to hope, (in this respect,) from there are many who will consider these
the country, where resources are so scattered. tions as impertinent and heterodoxical. Why The towns should lead, and by and by the counshould they meddle with the beautiful, or be try will follow; for its fashions are all towncalled upon to determine whether the object derived. In Ohio there are many towns of three represented in that frame is a horse, or an
thousand inhabitants and upwards, where, withreflection of their own stupidity. In the main, in the last few years, commodious and substanour professors teach books ; — stereotypically tial school buildings have been reared. In these printed, cut and dried, and substantially press
the school authorities have placed the mere need books. What is drawn from beneath their cessaries for the conduct of a school. But the covers, smothered into the brains of their at-buildings are not furnished. The rooms are tendants, constitutes in their estimation, Educa- not specially attractive. In them there are no
Oh, egregious blunder! On, sad error! objects particularly suggestive of pleasant feelthat too long has been feeding souls on unseason- ings. There is nothing to awaken poetical emoed intellectual food. They present the meal tion, or historical reflection. There are your without spice or condiment to give it zest and maps in dead colors, your sombre blackboards,
And that is the relish. They give Education a poor, naked and the blank white walls. body, without soul or animation ; and so its room where the fresh, sensitive soul is sent every worshippers become dry-as-dusts, – lank, lean day to be impressed with nothing but heavy and mournful. Now, in truth, we must have tasks and rigid discipline; and to grow into a more poetry taught; and poetry must pervade
dislike of its young life, and everything about our educational systems, or we will be in a fair it. I am no advocate of an abatement of labor, way to become a nation of cynics. It is not the but I wish labor to be enlivened and spiritualend of life to get money and wear fine clothes. ized. The anchor was too heavy for the suilors It should not be alone the purpose of our schools until the song lightened it. to fit men for money-getting, and to make them Every school-room should be hung with picfind accountants and reckoners. This tendency tures. Small shelves should be tastefully aris forward and bold enough. It has brought ranged, out of danger, for objects of curiosity, men, and women too, to see the figure in every- busts and statuary. By the judicious expendithing, without discerning the spirit.
ture of fifty dollars, a school-room can be made I say we must have some poetry taught. By delightfully cheerful. Very pleasant prints and this I do not mean language set in metre, and engravings can be procured in the picture furjingling with rhyme; or the philosophy of the nishing shops, ready framed, for from one dolprosodial scanning in the grammars; but it is lar and fifty cents to five dollars; and busts that science that shall cultivate an appreciation and agrecable articles of statuary for about the of the ideal ; that shall lead from the material same price. But where shall the money come to the spiritual, and instruct one to look upon a from? Let your pupils earn it. They will take picture as something more than a mere arrange- a pride in the matter if it is properly and judiment of light and shades. Children that are ciously presented to them. If you have singreared with the lovely, will grow lovely. Like ing in your school, give a public concert or two, all other dispositions, this recognition of the and an exhibition. Charge an admittance, and symmetrical, and taste for ideal expression, im- by this means induce the parents to contribute
to an important and commendable object, that The fingers of his right hand had been contractthey might not otherwise have the magnanimity ed and stiffened in early life, by a burn, but were to assist. The teacher who is possessed of a fixed in just the position to hold a pen and a soul, (if you have none, pray for one without penknife -- and nothing else. As they were also delay, I will be surprised to find how much such considerably indurated, they served as a convedecorations will cheer him, and serve as agents nient instrument of discipline. A copy badly of relief, to remove a certain heaviness that of- written, or a blotted page, was sometimes visited ten weighs upon the heart of the most hopeful. with an infliction which would have done no Yor will they prove less serviceable or interest- discredit to the beak of a bald eagle. His long, ing to your pupils. The best series of essays deep desk was a perfect curiosity-shop of conthat I ever received from my pupils, were sug- fiscated balls, tops, penknives, marbles and jewsgested by, or descriptive of, some portraits that harps — the accumulation of forty years. I dewere placed in my school-room. How much sire, however, to speak of him with gratitude, will a life-size print of Washington, Franklin, for he put me on the track of an acquisition Clay, Webster, or Napoleon speak in a school. which has been extremely useful to me in after room : One of my girl pupils once remarked : life — that of a plain, legible hand. I remained “I don't like the portrait of Webster much ; at these schools about sixteen months, and had whenever I am idle his big, black eyes appear to the good fortune in 1804, to receive the Franklin look right at me, and rebuke me for it.” Thus medal in the Eng ish department. After an inthey may prove to have a moral power as well as terval of about a year, during which I attended to break the barren monotony of naked walls. a private school kept by Mr. Ezekiel Webster,
of New Hampshire, and on an occasion of his At the Sixty-Sixth Annual School Festival, absence, by his ever memorable brother, Daniel which took place a few years since in Fancuii Webster, at that time a student of law in BosHall, Boston, Edward Everett delivered an ad-ton, I went to the Latin school, then slowly dress, in which he gives this interesting account emerging from a state of extreme depression. of the educational advantages he enjoyed in It was kept in School street, where the Horti
cultural Hall now stands. The standard of early life :
scholastic attainment was certainly not higher “ It was fifty-two years last April since I
than that of material comfort in those cays. We began, at the age of nine years, to attend the read pretty much the same books – or of the reading and writing schools in North Bennett
same class -- in Latin and Greek, as are read street. The reading school was under Master
now; but in a very cursory and superficial manLittle, (for • Young America’ had not yet repu
There was no attention paid to the philodiated that title,) and the writing school was
sophy of the languages — to the deduction of kept by Master Tilestone. Master Little, in words from their radical elements
-- to the nicespite of his name, was a giant in stature six
ties of construction - still less to prosody. I feet four, at least — and somewhat wedded to
never made a hexameter or pentameter verse, the past. He struggled earnestly against the till, years afterwards, I had a son at school in change then taking place in the pronunciation of London, who occasionally required a little aid u, and insisted on saying monooment and natur. in that way. The subsidiary and illustrative But I acquired, under his tuition, what was branches were wholly unknown in the Latin thought in those days a very tolerable know- School in 1805. Such a thing as a school libraledge of Lindley Murray's abridgment of Eng
ry, a book of reference, a critical edition of a lish grammar, and at the end of the year could classic, a map, a blackboard, an engraving of an parse almost any sentence in the · American Pre- ancient building, or a copy of a work of ancient ceptor.' Master Tileston was a writing master
art, such as now adorn the walls of our schools, of the old school. He set the copies himself,
was as little known as the electric telegraph. If and taught that beautiful old Boston handwrit
our children, who possess all these appliances ing, which, if I do not mistake, has, in the march and aids to learning, do not greatly excel their of innovation, (which is not always the same
parents, they will be much to blame. At this thing as improvement,) been changed very little
school, in 1806, I had the satisfaction to receive for the better.
Master Tileston was advanced the Franklin medal, which, however, as well as in years, and had found a qualification for his that received at the English school in 1801, durcalling as a writing master, in what might have ing my absence from the country in early life, seemed at first to threaten to be an obstruction. I was so unfortunate as to lose.”
a creditable representation from Providence, met at the Seminary. The room was comfortably filled during
the session. COMMUNICATIONS for this Department should be ad- Mr. N. W. DeMunn, of Providence, in the chair, dressed to the PUBLISHERS OF THE ScHOOL MASTER, the President being absent, remarked in a short speech Providence.
upon the importance and results of meetings of Teach
ers' Associations, encouraging the teachers present to The Meeting of the Teachers' Institute at take an active part in the discussions of the Institute. Kingston, March 1st and 2d.
An hour and a halt was spent in an animated dis
cussion of the subject--"Best method for securing The Institute met in the Court House Friday evening. punctual and constant attendance at school." The President being absent, Mr. F.B. Snow acted in Mr. F. B. Snow, of Providence, called for the plain his place. Prayer was oflered by Rev. Dr. Phelps of statement of the evil from teachers present. Kingston. Rev. Augustus Woodbury, of Providence, Mr. Geo. Gardiner, of Kingston, said that his aim delivered an address on UNWRITTEN HISTORY. We was to make the school-room pleasant, but this plan cull some comprehensive passages :
failed in a great measure. His attendance averaged Written history concerns itself with the acts and only two-thirds of the number registered. His great events of man's exi-tence upon the earth. Unwritten trouble was tardinees, while the attendance was very History belongs to the spirit, which makes that exist- bad. He would like an account from other teachers of ence life.
The earth becomes the abode of man, as a their experience. being not only of action, but also of thought, of spirit. Mr. S. A. Briggs, of Greenwich, said that the first ual energy, purpose and results.
thing to be done was to make the children interested The method of writing history has very percep'ibly in the school, and to make the school-room pleasant; changed within the last few centuries. It is now ne- the next, to influence and gain the influence of pacessary to kuow what is unwritten--the secret, inviei- rerts. ble and eternal things that human life possesses. The Mr. Grosvenor, of Wickford, thought that a good, power of a nation depends upon the truthfulness of its commodious and pleasant room, with windows that citizens, on their justice, generosity and integrity, not admit the light, was oi first importance. He had tried upon factitious noblene-s of descent, nor dead glories various means, but had not succeeded. Some pupils ofits former life. The law of lineage is lineage of soul. resided so far from school, that it was dificult for them The whole of history never can be written, because to be regular and punctual. His sshool registered 72, there are latent forces and hidden agencies, which form with perhaps an attendance of 60 per cent. He hoped a nation's life. Su it is impossible to write a juít ac- that teachers would give the results of their experi. count of cotemporary lives. Three truths were amply ence. illustrated by the lecturer in the rise of the Common- Mr. Tefft, of Carolina Mills, thought that those who wealth of England and the life of Cromwell, the exe- lived farthest from school were tbere earliest, and vice cution of Charles I, the American Revolution and the versa. The first of the present term his school numlife of Washington. All the great enterprises of hu- bered seventy or seventy-five. The average was 60, man life are connected with the most secret things of more or less. Recently, the average is very full. He human character. Public opinion, though it be ideal, asserted that, in his opinion, no one tbipg would do as nay, because it is ideal, is the most powerful thing in much to sustain constant and regular attendance as the the world; its progress is secret, though more power-system, if we could adopt it, of making a regular tax. ful than "lightning, whirlwind and earthquake." ation every term for every scholar.
Each nation has its soul, the knowledge of which Mr. Thurber, of Providence, generally bad no difcan alone explain its history. They work to-day, and ficulty in this matter. He would not make it tbe prifind that they are working for eternity. Asinstances, mary, the important thing, to insist too strongly on the lecturer mentioned the Hebrews, Greece and Rome, punctuality, that too much friction might be avoided. Germany three centuries ago, and Plymouth colony. He was never troubled with absences. But all the oir. The determining influences of history were alluded to in cumstances of his school are such as tend to secure a graceful manner, under the head of court intrigues, good attendance. public opinion, political parties, religious sects, the Mr. Snow detailed many interesting circumstances clergy, the progress of science, schools taught by living of his experience in country and city schools. In a teachers and deeds of humanity and religion. The certain school, his pupils were compelled to bring writgreatest events in history may hinge upon a single ten excuses in case of absence, to secure admission into man's fidelity to his convictions of truth.
the school-room. Notes were immediately sent to the We are all acting history. We do not know how parents, informing them of the tardiness or absence of near to us may dwell the loftiest gepius and the brav- their children. This plan succeeded, as an agreement est and truest souls.
was made with parents, a majority of whom were in The unwritten life of an age may become the soul of favor of it. It parents co-operate with a teacher, the the history of all coming time.
judicious use of the rod may eradicate the evil. Mr. “O, small beginpings! ye are great and strong, Snow related a case of this kind which occurred in bis
Based on a faithful heart and weariless brain; own school, the effects of wbich were good. He relatYe build the future fair, ye conquer wrong; ed the circumstances of an appeal to the self-respect of
Ye earn the crown, and wear it not in vain," the pupil, in a case of slight but continued tardinera. This body continued its sessions during the day on Mr. S. A. Potter proposed to awaken the curiosity Saturday,
of children by proposing questions to be answered and
SATURDAY MORNING. topics to be discussed at a time a few minutes previous Several teachers from the vicinity of Kingston, with'to 9 o'clock the next day. There ought to be some magnetic influence in every teacher to draw pupils to and appealed to teachers for their support of that him, as the magnet draws iron from a bowl of sand.
journal. Mr. DeMunn spoke of the importance of interesting
Afcer & short recess,
Mr. Snow resumed the discus. parents in the necessity of punctuality. He was op- sion of the subject of reading. He dwelt on the neposed to keeping children after school. He alluded to cessity of distinctness of enunciation and indicated the intluences of circumstances upon the puuctuality methods of attaining it. It is perfectly useless to teach of pupils, exhorting teachers to enlist the interest of modulations of the voice before pupils are taught to parents by visiting them.
speak distinctly. Mr. Snow recommended all to speak a good word in A colloquy ensued on questions proposed by memfavor of school regulations.
bers of the Institute concerning the conduct of Rev. Dr. Phelps, being invited by the President to reading exercises, and difficulties met by teachers in speak, stated a new aspect of the case-the influence of teaching reading. punctuality outside of the school-room. The school- The discussion of the topic-best method of teaching room is the nursery for life, and babits formed there arithmetic-was now resumed. The hour of adjournare the habits which will be carried out in after life ment was fixed at half-past five. The venerable gentleman illustrated this truth in a va- Mr. Tefft would have pupils learn rules word for riety of instances, referring specially to the results of word, though he knew there would be objection to the labora of Dr. Barnes, accomplished by means of this statement. habits of punctuality and early-rising. Too much can- The President challenged the last speaker to write : not be said of the importance of securing habits of rule for a complicated example which he dictated. punctuality in early life.
The discussion of this subject was continued by serMr. DeMunn remarked to the same effect, instancing eral members of the Institute, eliciting some kindly the example of a man formerly Principal of a young expressed differences of opinion from the disputants. ladies' school in Providence.
The burden of argument seemed to show that rules are It was agreed that the hour for adjournment be 12.15 not always applicable. Mr. DeMann took the floor
and gave a familiar illustration of the inefficiency of and for the beginning of the afternoon session 1.30.
rules for common divisors and multiples. A recess occurred at 11 o'clock.
Mr. Teft stated as the discussion closed that he would The author of the poem expected to be read at this never teach a rule without giving the principles. He session being ab:ent, Mr. Potter occupied the remain. would teach principles first. His remarks, as be exing bour in an animated exercise on the principles of pected, provoked opposition. He agreed in much that peamanship.
the President had said in relation to rules. SATURDAY AFTERNOON. The following resolution unanimously passed : The Institute was called to order a little later than
Resolved, that the thanks of the Institute be prethe hour appointed, by the election of a President pro sented to Rev. Augustus Woodbury, for his interesting ten. Discussion was begun by remarks of several of iecture; also to the citizens of Kingston Hill for the the members on the question, How can we secure use of their Court Room, and for their liberal hospitaligood reading? The early part of the diecussion was ty to the members of the Institute; also to Mr. D. G. un usually animated.
Grosvenor and Mr. G. H Gardiner for their active inThe President in the chair, Mr. Grosvenor continued terest in furthering the object of its meetings. his speech recommending the practice of the sounds of
After speeches by Messrs. Grosvenor and the Presi. letters, the spelling of different words by their sounds, and concert reading.
dent, the Institute adjourned. Mr. Thurber stated that if the teachers can awake in
The sojourn of the Institute at Kingston, was a sea. pupils a comprehension and understanding of the son of intellectual activity to these teachers who con.
ducted and listened to the discussions. points in their reading, they invariably read well.
More solid, Mr. Leach, of Rocky Brook, considered one of the practical thoughts were developed than at any such greatest defects in teaching reading to be the want of meeting of the Institute recently held.
The meeting proper text books. Pupils should have books treating was specially characterized by vigorous speeches from of familiar subjects, suitable for teaching the young, local teachers, who evince a commendable energy and not works on ecience.
a fund of information fitted for active and eflectual Mr. Potter made sone animaied remarke on the sub- service, as instructors. ject before the meeting, recommending fidelity to Na- Strangers were kindly entertained in the homes of ture as an important principle.
the hospitable people of Kingston. The hospita'ity The Chair said the only way in which a child should was liberal, and the thanks of the Institute deserved. be prepared in the least to use our language sbould be One of the most profitable features of the exercisog by being taught constantly to use it. He reviewed the was the colloquial discussion concerning the subjects usual mode of teaching young pupils to read, advo- of reading and arithmetic, in the afternoon. cating the teaching of reading by sounds. He would call words first by their names, calling attention to the Tue annual report of the President of the Phil. objests, and would not detain a pupil in the mere adelphia Board of School Controllers states that enunciation of twenty-six letters in succession, nor in there are under control of the Board, three hunthe recitation of the names of letters to which no cor. dred and thirty-five schools, embracing two high responding idea of words delivered in speech can be
schools, fifty-four grammar, fifty-nine secondary, attached.
A remark of Mr. Gardiner, in reply, provoked a re- one hundred and seventy primary, and fifty unjoiader from the Chair, who then spoke carnestly in classified. The total expenditure of 1860 amount. favor of sustaining the RHOD 2 ISLAND SCHOOLMASTER, /ed to $512,014.