Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub
[ocr errors]

1

be, an anthority above that of the teach- that he may attain the desired end. The er, to which the parent, as the natural! manner in which the teacher shall enforce guardian of his child has a mht to ap- his authority, inust also bo left to his owi peal in case of any injustice or unlucidiscretion. There are limits to his powseverity exercised by the teacher towards er, and when he transcends them, hu his pupil. But in no case, unless where should be held to a strict account, both to violence or injury is done to the child, the law and the indignant rebuke of an has the parent any right of interference. cnlightened public sentiment. But no The teacher is the ruler of the realm over man is competent to direct the teacher as which he lias been placed, and no one to the precise way he shall enforce obeclishould presurne to dictate to him rules ence to the rules of his school. In this by which he should govern his school. casc, he must be left to exercise a wiso If he is incompetent to govern properly, and sound discretion. Teachers equally

the fact being made apparent, he should good and successful, have differed widely | be dismisseri from his position, and one in their management, in this respect.beiter qualificri procured to take his place. Each must be left to follow the bent of

Authority always implies the necessa- his own genius-providing, always, that ry power to enforce its commands. In the pupil is in no way injured either in deed, there can be no authority where body, mind or morals. such power is not conceded. The right

There are, however, some general printo require carries with it the right to en- ciples by which proper authority should

force the requisition. There is a wide be exercised and enforced, and to some | difference between that which is simply of these we now call attention. I scarec

advisory, or merely admonitory, and that ly need to say that every requisition of a which has in itself the force of a com- teacher should be right in itself. All mand. The mutual relations of common true authority must be based upon justfriendship, give the privilege of the form-ice. The moment the requirements of a er, but they cannot confer the right of teacher violate equal and even-handed the latter. I may even go so far as earn- justice, his authority is at an end. His estly to expostulate with my friend, and pupils will cease to respect both it and if he loves me, he will esteem me the him, and he will lose his power to enforce more highly for it; but the moment I lay eren just and wholesome rules. And my commands upon him, his own self- children are close observers, as well as respect compels him to withdraw from keen sighted, in regard to what is right or intercourse with me, and to scorn my wrong. They quickly perceive and readmandates. My friendship gives me noily understand the moral bearing of the right of authority over him. But such rules which they are required to observe, is not the relation of teacher and pupil. and if they do not commend themselves They should be friends, it is true, but to what their instincts teach them is true they are also something very different.— and right, they will not feel much respect For the attainment of certain ends, one either for the rules or those who seek to has placed himself under the direction of enforce them. the other, and is, therefore, in duty Obedience should be enforced by an bound to submit to such rules as his appeal to the higher and more noble

To do right teacher regards as necessary, in order principles of our nature.

because it is right, is the noblest motive' maxim ---Govern from a sense of right by which a human being can be actuate'). and justice when you can—from a feelAnd this is the motire by which the ing of fear, when you must. teacher should endeavor to enforce obe. Nor is it improper to appeal to the dience to his rules. If a pupil has diso- pupil's self-interest and self-respect.beyel,-if he has been disregardful of These, to be sure, are not the best mohis obligations to his teacher, and thus tives to be awakened in his bosom,—they done injury to the school, let him be made do not reach down and lay hold of the to see and feel it, -Ict the great princi- moral nature--and when appealed to and ple of justice and right in his own bosom insisted on exclusively, they may foster be appealed to, and let him bc urgii), in an overweening selfishness which in the obedience to its dietates, to cease from end would prove ruinous to the happidoing evil and learn to do well. It is ness and usefulness of the pupil. But thus that his heart will be cultivate?, --next to the moral sensibilities, they are his moral nature aroused and stimulated the hichest motives we know, and are -and an influence will be exerted over usually stronger than any other. Every him that will tell upon all his future his person has some regard for the esteem tory. It will inspire him with respect and good will of others. IIis social posifor his teacher, and the rules which he tion is of great account in making up his endeavors to enforce, while at the same sum of enjoyment. And hence he fears time it will quickcn his perception of the the effect which his own rash and wicked right, and nerve his resolution to pursue conduct will have upon the estimation in it. He will thus be taught to obey from which he will be held by his associates.principle, ratier than through fear, and When moral principle alone will not sufwill thus cheerfully acquiesce in the de- fice as a motive to induce obedience, it mands made upon him.

is proper to combine with it an appeal Do not understand me as intimating to these lower motives—but they should that nothing but moral snasion should never be allowed to be used exclusively be used by the teacher. Unfortunately nor should they be ranked as first in imthere are some pupils who cannot be portance. reached by it, and there are others who

There are various ways in which these will obstinately refuse to submit to its motives may ho brought to bear upon teachings. In such cases the

the minds of pupils, which, perhaps,

passage way to the heart is obstructed, and needs should claim our attention at this point. to be cleared out, not so much by ap- An appeal to right and justice should alpeals to the understanding and con- ways be direct and personal-earnest and science, as by sundry applications to the serious. The person to whom it is made outer man, whose disagreeable visitations should feel that it admits of no trifling have wonderful power to waken up the --that consequences are attached to his dormant energies of the soul. When conduct of the most serious and vital the heart and soul become thoroughly character, involving him in circumstances aroused, by whaterer means, they should the most responsible and far-reachingbe led closely to examine the moral bear- and having very much to do with his ings of disobedience, and thus made to present happiness and future destiny.abandon it from principle. It is a safe He should be made to feel that the motives and principles by which he now al- peculiarly sensitive to shame aud dis. lowed himself to be governed will become grace-who cannot bear scorn or ridicul perfectly inwrought into tho very tex- —but whose sensibilities cannot be stir ture of his soul, reproducing themselves red in any other way. The teache: in his future history, and exerting a con- should thoroughly understand the char trolling influence in the formation of his acter of his pupil, and appeal to sucl character. In urging such motives and notives and principles as his peculia: considerations there is no room for levity habits or temperament demands. Bu or trifling. They appeal most soberly when he has gained the point, and swak and seriously to every high and holyened feeling, by whatever means, he principle of our nature. Let the man- should not fail to direct it by giving to ner of the appeal correspond with its na- it a moral tone, and firmly basing it upor ture.

principle. Ile will thus educate the In appealing to motives of self-interest, heart, as well as develop the intellect. less seriousness is demanded. Usually The last resort of a teacher to enforce those who would be reached by urging obedience should be the infliction of bodsuch an appeal seriously, would be in- ily pain. This should be regarded as thic fiuenced by the higher motive of moral desperate remedy and resorted to when principle, or at all events by a combina- all other methods have failed. It is untion of the two. When this can be doubtedly better that a child should be done, it is certainly very desirable. It governed through fear of suffering, rathavoids wounding one's self-respect, and er than not be governed at all. But it is disposes him to look at things in a sober only in extreme cases, and those in and serious light, which produces by far which parental restraint and influenco the most desirable effect.

in the domestic circle have been altoBut there are those who can not thus gether wanting, that the teacher will be be reached-whose sensibilities are too compelled to such an extreme remedy. obtuse to be aroused, unless in some way

Our remarks hitherto have been dithe arrow is made to penetrate their rected to government as a reformative souls, and the fountain of feeling is stir- principle. We desire now to look at it red by some sudden and unexpected in another light, which, to us, is far more shock. There is no way to break up interesting and important. As that is their dreamy monotony of feeling, and the most perfect civil government whose their stolid indifference to every noble laws are so wise and just that no one principle and sentiment, but to produce will seek to break them, so he is the best a wound in their natures, and probe it teacher whose mind and deportment is frequently to keep it sensitive. There such as secures from his pupils spontaare some persons who will feel the bit- neous respect and obedience. Governing of a sarcasm, that cannot be reached ment must really be in the teacher, and by the most earnest entreaty, or convin- it will show itself more clearly and cerced by the most clearly demonstrated ar- tainly in preventing than in curing disogument. It will arouse them up, and bedience. If the bearing of the teacher induce them to make strenuous efforts to is such as to secure the interest and afimprove, when no other motive will fection of his pupils, he will find little difreach them. There are others who are ficulty in controlling them. The look of

193

WISCONSIN JOURNAL OF EDUCATION.

[ocr errors]

some men-the mere glance of the cre,

lall our business plans of life, or they is more potent to inspire interest, and will never be successful. A man can quell the purpose of disobedience, than never become a good mechanic without all the logic and arguments, all the sar- first learning to be orderly, regular and cain and derision, even of those who are systematic in his endeavors. Ile cannot masters in the art, combine with that. be a respectable farmer cren, without ever of physical force they may be al-, learning the same lesson, -to say nothlowed to use. They possess a moral ing about liis becoming a merchant and power over their purils which wins their accountant without them. A school confidence and regard, and makes obe-, without order and regularity is like an dience to their commands, and acquies- unemployed mind, "the workshop of! cence in their wishes not merely a duty, the devil." In it no learning of any real but a pleasure. It inspires them with and practical value can be obtained. It lofty and generous sentiments towards is not only useless, but a positive damthem, which makes disobedience really age. No useful knowledge can be acmore difficult and trying than the observ- quired, and habits are formed, which in ance of the most rigid rules, and sub-aster life produce their baleful fruits in mission to the most serere mental disci- luxuriant clusters. pline. Government must be in the But order in the school is only one of teacher, or no rules or suggestions will the ends to be securel. Submission to sustice to bring it out. The faculty may government is one of the first lessons to be cultivated, doubtless, as other facul-, be tanght in our domestic circles, and in ties arc, --but it must be a part of the na-'our common schools. The habit of subture, one of its original endowments, or mission to rightful authority is there to no amount of instruction or discipline be formed, which is so essential to make can place it there. There cannot be a wise and peaceable citizen. The lesson even an aptness to teach without it, for of obedience to wise and wholesome rules teaching in its very nature, implies the is to be learned in childhood, or it is nerpower to direct and control. And, other or learned. The wayward and disobethings being equal, he may be said to be dient almost never make industrious and the best teacher who has the greatest peaceable citizens. They are found power of control over his pupils ;-who, among the vagabonds that prowl about by the force of his own virtuous princi- our streets, or lie about our gambling ples, exemplified in his daily intercourse saloons, smoking and drinking, and with his pupils, inspires them with the wasting their time and money in idleness highest respect and veneration for his and dissipation. They are destitute of character, and makes them feel that he all the elements of character which are is thic model which they should aspire to found in wise, virtucus and useful citiimitate.

zens. They are of no benefit to themThe end which school government is selves, their families, or the State. Prodesigned to secure is, first, the order and per authority, prudlently enforced and regularity of the school. Order is heav- rigidly maintainel, is, in my judgment, en's first law, it is sai'l. Whether it he'one of the most essential, and vitaily so or not, one thing is very certain, no important lessons to be taught in our i earthly attainment of any value can be schools. It is impossible for them to secured without it. It must enter into accomplish their mission without it, or

in any way to subscrve the great inter- the city, and the laws of the State and ests of the state and nation by dispens-nation. This is an essential element in ing with it. It is a part of that disci- the education of American citizens; and pline which is absolutely necessary to while we are increasing the conveniences qualify our children to become useful and and comforts of the children in our valualle American citizens.

Schools, and enlarging the means of inI remember, when a boy, to have seen tellectual discipline and moral culture, quite a large walaut tree, perhaps twelve we should earnestly endeavor to impress inches in diameter, with its trunk tied in upon the next generation the great praca perket knot. I wondered how such a tical lesson of cordial obedience to estabthing could happen. The knot was rigid lished laws. and firm, and large and strong branches were spreading themselves out above it.

WISCONSIN TEACIIERS' ASSOCIATION A little reflection assured me that that knot had been tied when the tree was only a little sapling, capable of being Tue Wiscorsin Teachers' Association, bent and twisted in any direction with pursuant to adjourninent, met in the Concomparntively little force. Then it could gregational Church in Beloit, on Wednesbe easily tied or untied. But after the day, August 20th, 1856, at 10 o'clock, sapling became a tree it would yield to A. M. no human power.

It had taken its The meeting was called to order by shape and form, and would resist the the President, and opened with prayer energies of the mightiest man who sho'd by Prof. F. W. Fisk. endeavor to untie its knot. I have often

W. Van Ness appointed Assistant Secreveriel to that tree in my own mind retary. J. G. Melynn, Chairman of as illustrative of the character of the hu- the Executive Committee, reported the man mind. In childhood it is easily order of business. moulded-bent in this or that direction,

J. L. Pickard, President of the Asso. tied and untied. But when it has grown ciation, delivered an address upon up and become matured, it is perfectly Trials of Teaching." rigid and inflexible. In the young mind, that which is rough may be made smooth,

J. G. MeMynın, 11. Van Ness, and A and that which is crooked straightened. C. Spicer, were appointed a committee on Let your government be such as shall enrollment of delegates. mould the character to virtue and obe- J. G. MeNynn, 1. C. Barry, and R. C dience, and then it will be fitted to resist Parsons were appointed a committee ti temptition, and will in its turn moull nominate suitable fersons to be electer other after the same pattern. In con- honorary members of the Association. clusie,??, let me say that all who are

con

A. C. Spicer, N. P. Kinney, and F. W nected with the management of schools, Fisk, were appointed a committee on re or engaged in giving instruction, should solutions. strive by their example to inspire the

Adjourned till 2 o'clock. young with a sentiment of respect for

2 o'clOCK P. M. law, and should teach them by precept to yield a cordial obedience to the regu

J. G. MeMynn, from the Editorial com lations of the Schools, the ordinances of mittee, made a report as follows:

[ocr errors]
« НазадПродовжити »