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mind of the pupil becomes engrossed with the means to the exclusion of the geographical material. The map assumes an undue importance to him, and it becomes a difficult work to afterwards remove the impression that geography is a study of the location of cities, rivers, boundaries, etc., upon the map. in mature years it will be found, that to one whose early work was upon the map, the mention of the word Austria, will call up a colored piece of paper, so many inches long and wide, of such a form, etc.
The idea of a map should be taught when a good general con ception of geographical features, their combinations, the life forms upon them, etc., have been given. All the work of the first three years can, it is believed, be best done without it. At about the close of the third year, a clear idea of the map and of the globe may be given, and from that time on these in conjunction with the text would constitute the main means; but the geography work of the first three years is to be presented mainly by means of language and pictures, supplemented by constant reference to the knowledge of his own region, which has come to the child through both spontaneous and directed observation. The ideas to be dealt with during the second year having been given, it now remains to show how these two instruments-pictures and language-may be employed,
(The following article touches upon several of the above mentioned points in a more specific way):
GEOGRAPHICAL AIDS-SECOND YEAR.
Having carefully followed the geographical threads of the first year, the second year pupil is ready to use those "threads” (of color, form, size, drawing, place, distance and direction) as his implements in turning the rich soil of the earth for the planting of the fruitful seed which shall spring up and yield him delight and comfort.
Describe to a child, who does not understand ideas and terms of form, a house formed of slender poles arranged in a cylindrical form, with a cone-shaped roof, the whole interlaced with reeds. The words do not convey a single thought; but to him who holds the thread" the words are full of meaning and he is eager for pencil or clay to represent them.
One good way of studying animals, plants, and people in their relations to each other is to read some books describing regions in the different zones. Thus in studying the cold conntry there is presented a little girl, her clothing is spoken of, her food, the house she lives in, her mode of travel, her plays, etc. aid of oral narration and pictures collected from any and every source the pupils can be made thoroughly acquainted with the little Esquimau girl. They can mold her ice or stone house, the seal which furnishes her with food and clothing, the whale whose bones are used for the sled she rides upon. The skin of the bird which gives her the eggs for her breakfast, can be borrowed from some cabinet.
The Seven Little Sisters may be the book chosen for an aid in i his work. It is a book full of stories told in pleasing, truthful language, but containing enough of the "new and wonderful” to satisfy the mind of the child. Just enough is related to make him wish for “more, please.” More is written in the companion book Each and All, and old friends are greeted in each chapter. These books should be supplemented by others. Take the children to Aunt Martha's Corner Cupboard for a bit of honey or sugar or for a sniff the sweet spices within. Other books are: Little Folks in Feathers and Fur, Johonnot's Natural History Readers, Little Lucy's Wonderful Globe, Littre People of Asia, St. Nicholas, and Our Little Men and Women.
Other aids are: Bits of coral, sea shells, sea weeds, deserted nests of birds, stalks of sugar-cane, a sheaf of wheat and oats, collections of leaves and flowers, a silk-worm cocoon, a tea-box from some tea store, a cocoanut shell, an alligator's tooth, and better than all a hearty determination on the part of the teacher. Some busy-work aids are: The drawing, molding, the cutting and folding of paper to represent some object studied. Short stories written about people, plants or animals. Grouping the animals of the warm, cold, desert or mountain country.
For a rest exercise the teacher'may announce that she is thinking of some animal, that she will not name it, but that she will answer questions in regard to it. The pupils may then ask questions as to its color, form, size, habits, use, etc., until they are able to decide upon the name.
FANNIE S. BURT.
GENERAL LESSONS ON COMMON OBJECTS.
In a previous article it was held that general lessons are not upon subjects distinct from the common branches; but that they were involved in the regular studies, and were, therefore, supplementary to them.
At this time it is the intention to speak of that kind of general lesson which has for its subject a common object.
The chief aim of these lessons is to cultivate in the child the habit of accurate observation. The importance of this habit, while admitted by almost all theoretically, is in many cases, practically not admitted. Accuracy in observation is the only sure basis for accuracy in the higher processes of thought. Of all the errors that arise in the affairs of life, the great majority arise from want of care and exactness in observing things that are quite noticeable.
An indirect aim of these lessons is a training to accuracy of expression both in language and drawing; for the tongue and the hand will both feel the influence of accuracy in thought. Everett says in his Science of Thought that it is the nature of thought to express itself. It is, consequently, the nature of accurate thought to express itself accurately. These lessons on common objects should excite a spirit of inquiry and experiment, and an intelligent interest in the production of the object, as well as a sympathy with the workers who produced it, or work with it. These lessons also form the true basis to the more systematic lessons on science; or if no systematic work is to be given on science, lessons on common objects constitute a very good sub tute.
The mistakes of the inexperienced teacher in these lessons are, usually :
An attempt to do too much in one lesson.
Too much of an effort to secure certain formal expressons, as, “Glass is hard, brittle and transparent." The great aim of the lesson seems to be to lead the children to utter the sentence, and the effort is made in disregard of the thought exprersed by Everett,—that 'thought tends to express itself.' If this is true, when the children are unable to give any desired expression, the attention should be turned more strongly to the thought. This
having been made clear, the expression, to a large degree, takes care of itself.
3. Too much attention to unimportant qualities, to the comparative neglect of essential qualities.
4. The selection of objects of which but few specimens can be obtained. It is desirable that each child should be supplied with a specimen, or that the object should be large enough to be seen by every member of the class, in order that each pupil may examine and discriminate for himself.
In a lesson on coal the apparatus would be, enough pieces of coal (partly wrapped in paper to allow of handling) to supply each member of the class.
The first step would be to lead the children to discover those qualities that may be obtained through sight. This would give points concerning its color and the various forms in which it is found. By direct inspection its color-black-could be obtained, and indirectly, (by comparison with slate and coke), that it is usually shining. By comparison with cube, cylinder, and other regular forms the thought could be awakened that coal is irregular in form. This would, in addition to the training and the ideas gained, add to the child's vocabulary the words black, shining, and irregular.
The next step would be to test the object by the sense of touch and the muscular sense. Through these would come to the mind ideas of its smoothness, hardness and brittleness. With these ideas in mind the pupils could be led to classify other objects in respect to these qualities.
As a third step, certain qualities could be obtained through experiment, or by having them recall their experience as to how it burns when first put upon the fire, and how it burns after a little time has elapsed. In this way the distinction between the ideas expressed by inflammable and combustible, would be made clear, and they could determine whether coal is both. An exercise could then be taken in classifying such things as paper, gas, oil, coke, wood, by these ideas.
An object-lesson on coal is the basis to a series of oral languagelessons on the manufacture of coke and gas; use of coal; formation of coal; a coal mine; the equipments of the miner; the mines of his own neighborhood; combustion, etc.
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Ruskin says for a person starting out in life three things are essential to determine: 1. Where are you? 2. Where are you going? 3. What is the best thing to do under the circumstances?
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The January Journal will be almost exclusively devoted to answer. ing this question : “Should Religion be taught in the Pnblic Schools? If so, How?” Not fewer than twelve different persons will contribute to the discussion. No reader can afford to miss this issue.
"A REMINDER." - Several hundred teachers subscribed for the Journal with the understanding that they would pay when they received money from the trustees--not later than January 1, 1887. This is not a 'dnn' for the money is not yet due—it is simply a “ reminder to aid the memory of a few teachers who are perfectly honest but a little forgetful. Square up by the time agreed upon and begin the New Year with a clean sheet.
It is scarcely necessary to urge a large attendance upon the State Association. It pays well any enterprising teacher to attend these gatherings. The information gained is but a small part of the consideration. It is worth a great deal to meet and know those engaged in the same work; it gives one a higher regard for his profession. These meetings also give an enthusiasm for work and an ambition to succeed that can come from no other source. Come one, come all.
Miss CARRIE WELTON, of Waterbury, Conn., has left her entire estate, amounting to perhaps $200,000, to the “Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animais." She had been much interested in the working of the society for many years, and had contributed largely toward its support. Miss Welton was a lady of great intelligence and unusual culture. She lived for a purpose outside of self. Most people whose names are worth remembering, have made great sacrifices and have subordinated self and selfish interests to some great truth or