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Journal of Education
MADISON, WIS., MARCH, 1897.
ADDRESS ALL COMMUNICATIONS TO
and legal principles involved is really of small JOURNAL OF EDUCATION, value. We hope that these articles may give 23 East Main Street, Madison, Wis.
rise to careful consideration of the whole sub
ject of history teaching on the part of some at 1. W. STEARNS,
least of our readers. ......... EDITORS AND PROPRIETORS. A. O. WRIGHT,
FRENCH spelling is only less atrocious than SUBSCRIPTION PRICE 81.00 A YEAR.
that of the English language. We therefore (Entered at the Madison postoffice at second-class mailing rates.)
quote, with the added emphasis which comes of the greater enormities of our own orthog
raphy, the following effective passage from a TABLE OF CONTENTS.
recent petition addressed to the Minister of
Public Instruction by the Société de Réform EDITORIALS........
49-53 Brief Comments—War in School Histories-Cigar
Orthographique:” “Who does not know by ettes.
experience that the study of orthogrfay, beTHE MONTH. .....::::....
cause of its complexities, to-day absorbs for Wisconsin News & Notes—The New High School Building at Prairie du Chien-Pennsylvania Nor
itself alone at least half of the time set apart mal Schools and the Colleges-Longfellow the for instruction in the primary schools, and so Universal Poet-Who Are They?
renders impossible to the children a gaining of The School Room...... Thomas Buchanan Read-Alleged Distortions :::::::::........ 58-65
really useful knowledge, such, for example, as American Histories—Against the Teaching of War that of the French (English) language, which io History Text-books-English Teaching of differs essentially from its orthografy, but American History.
which is abandoned to the profit of the latter? CHILD-STUDY....
......... 65-66 Children's Drawings.
And the time thus expended in wasting the OFFICIAL DEPARTMENT....
66-71 young minds, that is to say, the most vital Department Meetings of the Wisconsin Teachers' force of the nation, is for nine-tenths of the Association.
children the only period of their lives reserved Book Table
for instruction. Is it not indeed a wrong to
oblige them to study an orthografy which they EDITORIAL.
cannot understand, to put them upon the rack,
to force the entrance of merely aı bitrary disSOME aspects of the teaching 'of American
tinctions, and this at an age when there is the history in our schools are presented in this
utmost need of instilling ideas tending to form number of the JOURNAL. They relate to the
the judgment and to protect it from harm?". attention given to war in our school texts, to One evidence of the rapid advance in techwhat the real subjects of instruction ought to nical requirements for educational service is be, to English school histories of the Revolu. afforded by the legislation of several states. tion, and to history as a means of perpetuating That of California is noteworthy for its requirehostilities after an issue has been finally set- ment that all high school teachers must have tled, as in the cases of our relations with Eng. had a course in Pedagogy at least equivalent land and of our civil war. It is too commonly to that prescribed in the State University, assumed that any one can teach history, which is one full year of study with six exerwhereas the broadest culture and the ripest cises per week. In carrying out the law dijudgment are required to handle this branch in plomas of no university will be recognized by such a way that it may contribute properly to the state department in which a course of pedapromoting good citizenship, that is, the growth gogy is not provided, and no candidate offerof the pupils in practical wisdom and power to ing a diploma from one of these will be judge wisely in affairs of governmental policy. accepted without satisfactory proof that he The mere recitation of the text of one of our pres- took the full course in Pedagogy. Experience ent school manuals, without serious effort to in teaching will not in any case be taken for understand clearly the economic, social, moral this preparatory theoretical training. In Bos
ton no teachers used to be employed who had which so much havoc is inade with the lannot had considerable experience, but a recent guage in daily use. I meet every day with act modifies the law so that college graduates men whom we call educated, who do not seem who have taken a sufficient pedagogical course to care how they speak or how they write. may be accepted without previous experience. Their speech is full of solecisms, and their letThus the progress in building up a profession ters and notes are unpunctuated scrawls, and of teaching is evidently great, and such legis- in their pronunciation the vowel sounds are lation is likely to become general within a few summarily got rid of... This indifference years.
to 'our tongue is fostered by the belief among EXPERT superintendents seem likely to be
many people that, as long as they know what
is right, they may speak as they please. But in the near future the most urgent demand of
I hold this to be a gross error, and have often our educational system. Officials holding
pointed out to young men talking slang, that such positions have not been given any large they cannot drop slang and speak pure Eng. authority in the past, and with reason since
lish when they choose. Of all our habits there they had no claim whatever to be accounted
is no habit so tenacious, so difficult to change experts. They have usually been simply suc
or get rid of, as our habit of speech." cessful principals of schools, who showed some tact in management and force of character
WAR IN SCHOOL HISTORIES. enough to give them a sort of lead, who have therefore been placed in charge of the schools
We have before us six of the manuals of of a city but in complete subserviency to the
United States History in common use in school board. This plan answered while the schools were looked upon purely from the
our public schools, and have sought to ascerpoint of view of their prudentials.” Now
tain what portion of their space is devoted to that education has become more than a rou
accounts of war, and what is the leading idea tine affair of school houses and taking reci
in the war narratives.
The chief difficulty encountered in the first tations,” we need for these positions men of culture, thoro acquaintance with the theo
inquiry arises from the multitude of minor ries and practices of other cities and other
conflicts of early colonial times and with the countries, knowledge of current educational
Indians. We have met it by leaving these
out of the account, so that the record of them problems and the solutions of them proposed anywhere, men of trained powers of observa
for the most part appears in the pages which tion and reflection, capable of finding out the we credit to peaceful history. We have, howneeds of a school system and formulating
ever, slipped the bond of many of them by effectively plans for meeting them-educa
beginning our accounting with the outbreak tional experts, in short, who can be given large
of the French and Indian War. Thus we
reckon the number of pages devoted to the powers with a fair degree of assurance that they will exercise them wisely and for the best
story of five, great wars—the French and Ininterests of the schools. To form such ex
dian, the Revolutionary, the Second war with perts is an important part of the work of higher
England, the Mexican and the Civil war.
We have counted the number of pages devoted pedagogical instruction.
to these conflicts and compared them with the ILLITERACY of American Boys, the title of whole number in the volume from the point Mr. Godkin's suggestive article in the January of departure, and find in the different books Educational Review, challenges consideration very little variation in the proportion. Oneat the hands of teachers. But why boys alone? half of the space is devoted to these wars, One who listens to the gush of American girls, which have occupied, in round numbers, twendetects not only the distressing overstraining ty-seven out of the one hundred and fifty of adjectives-- "awful,” “I thought I should years of the period. In most of the books die,” «just too lovely for anything,” etc.—but the actual number of pages given to these also the radical defects which Mr. Godkin struggles is somewhat more than one-half, but dwells upon. He writes, “I speak with de- in two of them it is a trifle less. liberation when I say that there is no civil- Turning to the other question we find also a ized country in which, outside the colleges, so striking accord in the books. They are all little of this (cultivation of correct usage in after one pattern. What they show is not the language) is done as in ours; in which the peo- display of character in war; heroism, endurple at large, tho their average speech is better ance, devotion to principle can hardly be exthan usual, pay so little attention to their hibited on a canvas so meager as that allowed manner of speaking and choice of words; in in most of them. More detail would be necessary than accords with the general view at passed to a new and larger life—to new and which they aim War history of this sort larger ways of doing business, to fuller knowlmight have a high ethical value by awakening edge of contemporary conditions given us by enthusiasm for nobility of character. Neither a teeming press, to broader interests, to more is it the business of war with which they con- perplexing problems involving the possibility cern themselves, obtaining transportation and of gigantic upheavals, to a powerful, on-rushsupplies, raising money for the war, settling ing national life, exposed to dangers in muniprinciples for its conduct as to treatment of cipal, state and national affairs. Our young prisoners, destruction of property, marauding, people need to understand something of this etc., or negotiations for exchange of prisoners, and how it has come about. They need to for peace, and so on. These themes might be know what our experience has been as to curfruitful in profitable considerations as to the rency, tariff, education, municipal manageconduct of great affairs, but they receive hardly ment, political forces, social and industrial a word of attention in these narratives. The progress, legal and moral rights-a thousand industrial relations of the war; the discussions practical matters to which history rightly conin politics and religion which it causes; its ef- structed might properly introduce them, and fects upon the morals and life of the people; upon which it might give them both some the inventions and discoveries to which it gives clear, fundamental notions and the habit of rerise; the legal and constitutional questions flecting rationally. These and such as these started by it—themes such as these are hardly seem to us the ends for which they should glanced at. It is the strategy of war that they study history, and we need books which bring are mainly concerned with, the movements and out these things, and teachers who understand countermovements of armies, the battles, the their nature and importance. But of the popular emotions of exultation or despair. teaching of history, we must speak on another The passions of the conflict kindle and glow in occasion, and shall be satisfied at present if the mind of the youthful reader. He sees we have led some of our readers seriously to “the pomp and circumstance of glorious war," consider the question: but not its miseries and hardships, its routine For what should our children study the hisbusiness aspects, its problems, its products, its tory of this country? rationality or irrationality. Every one who
CIGARETTES. has ever listened to a school recitation in history knows how vague and confused are the War is being inade upon the cigarette habit pupils' notions as to the legal and moral points among school children in several state legislaat issue, and how intense his emotional parti- tures this winter. Among them is Wisconsin. sanship is. He does not reflect upon the right We hope every teacher in the state will write and wrong in the “Boston tea party;" the to or personally interview his or her assemblyMexican war is for him not a moral question. man and senator in favor of some bill prohib
The other half of the books is usually inor- iting the use of cigarettes by school children. ganic. Pupils will generally vote it dull and To do so is clearly within their province as hard. It has the aspect rather of a chronicle teachers. Many of them have had occasion than a history--a list of things that happened, to know the evil effects of the use of tobacco God knows why. The makers of the later by some of their own pupils, and can speak texts realize that a marvelous national growth from personal knowledge. Very few teachers has been going on, and give us notes upon it, are liable to the counter charge that they themhit-and-miss selections of facts, annals of ad- selves use tobacco, and in this case it is easy ministrations. The truth is that the purple to reply that tobacco is specially harmful to patches” of war strategy in these school texts children, much more so than to adults. It can are so large that they kill down the steady on- also be said that the ordinary cigarettes are goings of national life. In fact our wars have more harmful than other forms of tobacco, bebeen but incidents in our national upbuilding, cause they are doctored up with drugs, includ
-volcanic upheavals as it were, due to tem- ing opiates, which are far worse than ordinary porary blockages in the way of our development. smoking or chewing tobacco. As to the efWhen this is rightly conceived, and a narra- fects of cigarettes upon school children we tive constructed to show it clearly, the story quote from a Chicago teacher's address reported of them will no longer occupy half the sum in a recent “Tribune:" total of pages. We need to ask the question, “It is only within the last five or six years For what should our children study the his- that the habit of cigarette smoking has made tory of their country? Surely not to make its appearance among the boys of the public generals of them all-boys and girls. We have schools; but during that brief period it has in
creased to such an extent that several thous breaking off the habit entirely, and a few of and have become addicted to the habit, while these, formerly the poorest in the class, bethe majority of these boys are so affected, came the best.” mentally and physically, they are unable to It was also stated that out of all the sixtymake further progress in their studies. That seven grammar schools of the city only fortythese are facts I am fully prepared to prove six cigarette smokers had been able to gradunot only through my own observation and the ate during the last two years. The teachers testimony of the boys themselves, but by the of Chicago have been making a vigorous effort statements of many teachers and more than to cure the cigarette evil by organizing antihalf the principals of Chicago, who I am con- tobacco societies among their pupils. They fident are better able to judge of the effects of now feel that they need the aid of a law to cigarette smoking on growing children than forbid the sale of cigarettes to children. any other class of people—the parents not ex- Doubtless there is more temptation to school cepted.
children in a great city like Chicago than in “As to my personal knowledge of the effect the country. The little "school supply stores" of this habit on school boys, I have carefully ob- sell candy and cigarettes, and would sell liqserved it for the last three years, during which vor except for the high license required, and period at least 125 boys addicted to this habit of course the children tempt one another. But have been at one time and another under my smaller cities and large villages have almost charge. These boys smoked from two to as great temptations proportionately, while twenty cigarettes a day, and not more than ten even country children can easily get tobacco, of them were able to keep pace with their though cigarettes are not yet fashionable for class; yet nine-tenths belong to educated, in- farmers. telligent families. Among these 125 boys were Teachers should oppose the tobacco habit found nearly all of those pupils who were from as being bad for any one, but as specially two to five years older than the average age harmful to growing children, and they should of children for the grade, as well as ninety per fight the use of cigarettes by the pupils in cent. of those boys especially hard to disci- every reasonable way, because it is a complipline, and all of those who were in the habit cation of the tobacco habit with the far more of playing truant. An Anti-Tobacco Soci- fatal opium habit. We have no doubt, if the ety, which most of the boys joined, was organ- facts could be secured, that the loss of physiized.
cal and mental power by many pupils and "From frank and friendly conversations the absolute breakdown of some, will be found with these boys many of their temptations and to be caused by cigarettes or tobacco in other difficulties were made clear. Twenty-five forms, to an extent that would astonish parents stated that the reason they failed to learn and teachers alike. their lessons was because most of the time Fifteen years ago the writer had charge of they were too sleepy to study; thirty said they a large temperance society for children. In were always dizzy after smoking; twenty-two the course of that work he found that the imcould not write neatly because their hands mediate practical work needed was far more trembled; several, to use their own words against tobacco than against liquor. From ‘felt shaky' when they walked. A large num the statements of the children themselves and ber were unable to run any distance, some not of the teachers in the public schools, several more than a block, although before they began of whom assisted him in the society. he learned to smoke they could run as far and as fast as that quite a few boys and some girls under ten any one. Nearly all of these boys told me years of age were acquiring the tobacco habit, they had headaches almost constantly. With and that between ten and fifteen a frightfully scarcely an exception they stated that they large number of boys began to sinoke and were unable to learn their lessons, although chew, and a considerable number of girls, and kept night after night for that purpose.
that most of them showed a decided falling off “After a careful investigation of the cases in school work, and quite a number were alof ten boys, who were four or five years too ready at about fifteen years old physical and old for their grades, I found that each one had mental wrecks from the use of tobacco, and begun school at six years of age, and had made this was before the days of cigarettes, and a grade or more a year up to the time he be when it was difficult for boys in small cities to gan smoking, when all progress stopped. Sev- purchase tobacco. eral of these boys had even dropped back a A few years later the writer being in San grade or two. A number of those who had Francisco visited many of the remarkable sysjoined the Anti-Tobacco Society succeeded in tems of free kindergartens established by the
to theed children opriter was into and many of
late Mrs. Sarah B. Cooper. The kindergar- amount to 36,024 pages, including the annual tens were supported by several societies report, the bulletins, the Farm Institute bulto the number of over sixty in all, and letin and the Hand Book of Northern Wisretained children only up to the school age of consin. six years. The writer was informed that a
-The following correction to the list of ofvery large portion of the boys and many of
ficers of the Wisconsin Teachers' Association the girls of that tender age were already using
has been furnished us by Pres: Williams: First tobacco to an extent that was noticeably inju
vice-president, J. T. Edwards, Marinette; secrious to them. This was one. of the worst
ond vice-president, Anna E. Schaffer, Chipevils the managers of the kindergarten had to
pewa Falls; third vice-president, A. R. Jolly, contend with.
-Superintendent Viebahn, of Watertown, THE MONTH.
has been again afflicted in the death of his son,
Gustav C. Viebahn, who died at his home Feb. WISCONSIN NEWS AND NOTES..
17th. He was a member of the law school at
Madison, and went home a short time before - Marinette has increased its teaching force
his death with an indisposition which develfrom.45 teachers to 61, in three years. The oped into typhoid fever. school enrollment for last year reached 3, 375. -An eight room building was provided in -Supt. Nattrass issues the questions used
Marinette in 1895, and was then thought to in the examinations for graduation from the
be ample for some time; but there are now rural schools of Lafayette county in a neat
over 500 children under ten teachers attending pamphlet of six pages.
school in churches, stores, halls, etc. During
the past three years the high school enroll-Supt. Burlingame, of Columbia county,
iment has increased from 93 to 160, and the prints in his program of teachers' meetings in teaching force from two to five the county, a very attractive picture of the Dells at the Narrows.
-Of the six school buildings of Marinette
all but one are provided with a regularly - The first number of the Monthly Dispatch
equipped kindergarten. The public kinderis before us, issued by the pupils of the Neills
garten supported at public expense has gained ville high school. It contains eight double
a firm hold upon the good will of the people, column pages and presents an attractive ap
and with reason. The school age beginning pearance.
at four, the children must be provided for. It -The enrollment at the Stevens Point nor has been shown that the kindergarten does mal school to the close of the second quarter this in the best way and at no greater exending January 22nd, was 469. Of these 262 pense. are in the normal department and 43 in the -Among the resolutions of the Illinois preparatory class.
Teachers' Association at its last session we -The total enrollment at the Platteville note the following: “That we also gratefully normal school up to the end of the second recognize the generosity of the state in proquarter, January 22nd, was 656, of whom 463
viding 116 scholarships in the state university were in the normal department and 64 in the
whereby young men and young women who preparatory school.
are desirous of pursuing the studies beyond the
high school, and are prepared therefor, may at-The report of the Oshkosh normal school
tend the university without expense for tuition shows an enrollment up to Jan. 22nd, the close
or incidentals.” of the second quarter, of 758, of whom 533 are in the normal department. Besides there are
-A circular from the committee of one hun81 in the preparatory academy.
dred appointed by the Wisconsin Teachers'
Association to look after the interests of the -W. D. Rice, a graduate of the Michigan
session of the N. E. A. in Milwaukee next state normal, and for several years conductor
summer, says: “We are pledged to a memof the mathematical department of the Mich
bership of 2,000 from this state, and in order igan School Moderator, has charge of the math
to bring that number to the meeting it will be ematics in the Marinette high school.
necessary for each member of the committee -Of the publications of the college of agri- to use every available means to give needed culture at the university during the past year, information as to its time, place, character and the report of the president shows that they advantages. The state of New York last year