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This is plainly the teacher's duty, as well as to keep up a friendly relation with the parents generally, by which means the ideas of school and home will become connected, and the child prevented from assuming two characters, which is too often the case. Both school and home will benefit by this mutual influence, and a greater consistency of conduct be obtained. A child who has been visited in sickness by its teacher will never forget the kindness, and I have known more improvement arise in the conduct and studies of some chilaren, from having called at their homes, and spoken of them in an encouraging, hopeful manner, than by any other means; while in
all cases the home influence is the most useful and natural auxiliary I on which the teacher bas to rely.
. As an inseparable adjunct of moral training, outward amenity and delicacy of demeanor must be carefully cultivated. Coarseness, vulgarity, and rudeness, debase and brutalize; while refinement of manner and consideration for the feeling and comfort of others, not only render the intercourse of life delightful, but promote internal purity and elevation of feeling. It is plain that one means of improving the manners of the children, is for the teacher to show an example of gentleness and propriety, which will be insensibly imitated hy them. But this is not entirely sufficient; errors and babits must he corrected in individual cases, and, when general, made the subject of lessons to the whole school. No more should be said to the children on these subjects than is actually necessary, as frequently remarking their behavior will make them nervous and unnatural. A good tone of manners once wstablished can be kept up quietly without calling much attention to it. Consider that personal habits are generally acquired more by habit than hy direct teaching. Cleanliness, for instance, is (as far as the child is concerned) easily acquired, if care be taken to notice a child when clean with approval, and gently to admonish it for any willful neglect, in unnecessarily soiling either its person or its clothes.
Obedience to the teacher's commands must of course be secured, but, as a general principle, it should be a willing obedience. To obtain this, the teacher must first gain the affections of the child, and take care to require only what is just and reasonable.
Truth.-Infants have at first very vague notions about truth and falsehood, and we must be careful not to attribute the wanderings of the imagination, or the momentary effects of timidity, to deliberate intenion. We have often known children indulge in a kind of roinance, and tell long histories, as if true, which never occurred, without being aware they were doing wrong until it was pointed out to them. Fear also is so very likely to lead to concealment that every inducement to candor should be held out, and when a little child once confesses a fault, it is questionable whether punishment should ever be inflicted.
Gentleness.—The exciting causes being as much as possible removed, outbreaks of anger will diminish, and the passion come under control. W hen rights are clearly defined and rules for the conduct of each established, quarrels will no longer be frequent; and as every case of wrong or injury is investigated, and just judgment given, a positive check will be put to such occurrences, and a gentleness of manner be induced.
Generosity.-Every thing that is ungenerous, such as a disposition to report and magnify the faults of others, or to depreciate them and to exalt self, must be discouraged, and a liberal, generous spirit cultivated and encouraged; for by this alone can the intercourse of the children be rendered bappy.
Ridicule.—Children are so keenly sensible to ridicule, that the worst effects would flow froin allowing them to deride each other, and the disposition to do so should be carefully repressed.
Pride.-In our anxious endeavors to encourage virtue or merit of any kind, we must be careful not to nourish pride. Children should be encouraged as far as possible to learn for learning's sake, to deny themselves for virtue's sake, and always to act from a sense of duty. The dangerous stimulus of public reward or praise should be administered with care; and above all things, the teacher must avoid making show-children, either for talent or virtue. To do so is often the greatest injury to those whom we think to benefit. For this reason also, offices of trust ought not to be confined too exclusively to a sinall number of children, however meritorious, as they will come to look down on the less favored, and believe themselves superior in nature and abilities; even to confine singing, drawing, or any accomplishment to a small class is often an injury to them. If possible, every one should have the same chance of learning; there will still always be difference enough arising from unequal natural abilities.
Tyranny and exclusiveness.-A few individuals in a school will generally try to tyrannize over the rest, and to monopolize the amusements which should be common to all. The remedy is very simple. Rules securing freedom and justice to all must be made, and strictly enforced, and, when necessary, lessons given explaining the evil tendency of such faults.
Cruelty to animals, and destructiveness.—Many children seem to delight in destroying insects, and ill-treating mi: als; and this babit, if allowed to strengthen, would undoubtedly lead to an unamiable
Ruilereed, and, Faults
disposition, and should be counteracted by proper lessons explaining the suffering they cause to animals, and the wrong they commit by ill-treating them. With regard also to inanimate objects, a careful, conservative spirit should be inculcated, which is best done by giving them an interest in, and teaching them to examine and admire works of art and natural objects.
Mutual love and benevolence.--Every opportunity should be sought for cultivating the higher feelings. The elder children should be taught to succor and assist the younger ones. When a child is hurt, or ill, or in any trouble, the teachers should hasten to set an example of kindness, by doing all in their power for its comfort and relief. Anecdotes and histories illustrative of kindness may also be frequently related in the gallery with a similar view.
Courage.—Many children are timid from constitutional causes, others are rendered so by injudicious treatment at home, while some have vague terrors at sight of some particular object, or in the dark, &c., &c. From whatever cause fear arises, it should be counteracted by kind and judicious reasoning, and by encouraging the child to overcome its terrors. The mere association of many children together has a tendency to give to each a degree of fortitude and selfsupport.
Intellectual Education. “I began with children,” says Pestalozzi, “ as nature does with savages, first bringing an image before their eyes, and then seeking a word to express the perception to which it gives rise."
This appears to be the true way to commence, since our ideas are first derived from nature; and as books merely represent this knowledge, it is plain that they instruct us only as far as we are able to connect the words they contain with the ideas those words represent.
We must begin by teaching real sounds, real forms, real colors, and real things. Before we use the word purple, we must distinctly impress upon the eye the color purple. If we would speak of a thing being square, we must take care first to impart the true notion of the form; and, when using the words rough or smooth, we should have previsy-ly made the mind acquainted with those sensations. The more we spread and enlarge these roots of knowledge, the more rapidly the future tree will grow, and the more vigorous will be the fructification. A child thoroughly drilled in real arithmetic by counting and arranging objects, will carry clearress and vigor into the artificial processes of figures; while a thorough coniprehension of the qualities if common things will enable the learner to understand the descriptions met with in history and geography, in a manner impossible without this elementary knowledge.
The spirit in which intellectual instruction should be carried on is of so much importance, that we are tempted to give the following clear and enlightened passage from Pestalozzi :
The interest in study is the first thing which a teacher should endeavor to excite, and keep alive. There are scarcely any cireuinstances in which a want of application in children does not proceed from a want of interest; and there are perhaps none under which a want of interest does not originate in the mode of teaching adopted. I would go so far as to lay it down as a rule, that whenever children are inattentive, and apparently take no interest in a lesson, the teacher should always look to himself for the reason. When a quantity of dry matter is before a child, when a child is doomed to listen to lengthy explanations, or to go through exercises which have nothing in themselves to relieve and attract the mind, this is a tax upon the spirits which a teacher should make it a point to abstain from imposing. In the same manner, if the child, from the imperfection of his reasoning powers, or his non-acquaintance with facts, is unable to enter into the sense, or follow the chain of ideas in a lesson ; when he is made to hear or to repeat what to him is but “ sound without sense, this is perfectly absurd. And when to all this the fear of punishment is added, besides the tedium which in itself is punishment enough, it becomes absolute cruelty.
The first thing to be considered then is--how to create an interest in study, so as to cause the mind to receive and retain the necessary information. Knowledge may be divided into-first, that derived from the involuntary action of the senses, impressed by some outward object or event, which by its novelty or interest makes a distinct and perinanent impression on the mind; and secondly, such as is obtained designedly by compelling the attention of the perceptive and reasoning powers to some subjects with which we wish to become acquainted. The first merely wants to be directed to become a fruitful source of improvement, but no child will adopt the second without some motive. It is of the highest importance to determine what that inotive is to arise from. Two stimulants were much in vogue in the old system, fear and ambition ; fear of the rod; and ambition to be considered clever, with a mingling of envy of the more gifted.
But will not love do more than fear? Will not the desire to acquire knowledge for its own sake, once awakened, do more than the wish to excel others? The answer is not difficult; and the choice once made, minor details will follow.
Mr. Wilderspin thus states his views of intellectual education :
The error of the past system (for such I hope I may venture to call it) as to mental development was, that the inferior powers of the mind were called into activity, in preference to its higher faculties. The effort was to exercise tho memory, and store it with information which, owing to the inactivity of the understanding and the judgment, was seldom or never of use. To adopt the opinions of others was thought quite enough, without the child being troubled to think for itself, and to form an opinion of its own. But this is not as it should be. Such a system is neither likely to produce great nor wise men, and is much better it lapted to parrots than to children. Hence the first thing attempted 1 an infant school is, to set the children thinking to induce them to e: amine, !!!! pars, and
judge, in reference to all those matters which their dawning intellects are capable of mastering. It is of no use to tell a child in the first place, what it should think,--this is at once inducing mental indolence, which is but too generally prevalent among adults, owing to this erroneous method having been adopted by those who had the charge of their early years. Were a child left to its own recources, to discover and judge of things exclusively by itself, though the opposite evil would be the consequence, namely, a state of comparative ignorance, yet I am doubtful whether it would be greater or more lamentable than that issuing from the injudicious system of giving children dogmas instead of problems, the opinions of others instead of cliciting their own. In the one case we should find a mind uninformed and uncultivated, but of a vigorous and masculine character, grasping the little knowledge it possessed with the power and right of a con90eror; in the other a memory occupied by a useless heap of notions --without a single opinion or idea it could call its own, and an understanding indolent and narrow, and from long indulged inactivity, almost incapable of exertion. As the fundamental principle of the system, I would therefore say, let the children think for themselves. If they arrive at erroneous conclusions, assist them in attaining the truth; but let them with such assistance arrive at it by their own exertions. Little good will be done if you say to a child, -that is wrong, this is right, un less you enable it to perceive the error of the one and the truth of the other. It is not only due to the child as a rational being that you should act so, but it is essentially necessary for the development of its intellectual faculties. It were not more ridiculous for a master in teaching arithmetic to give his pupil the problem and answer, without instructing him in the method of working the question, than it is for a person to give a child the result of reasoning, without showing how the truth is to be arrived at.
It will often happen that the mind of a child remains dull and inert, without any apparent cause ; in most cases this arises from our not having discovered the peculiar taste or bias of the individual. While we are knocking at the outer gate, and groping in the dark, the mind is asleep within, and will not awaken until we can establish some means of communication; but once aroused, it is all bustle and activity.
It must be the constant care of the teacher to bring forth the latent powers of each pupil, and to allow to each the credit due to his efforts, although these may not in all cases be equally successful. For this reason the classification of the children should be made with reference to each separate subject. How absurd would it be to prevent a pupil from progressing in arithmetic, for which he may have a peculiar talent, because he is not quick in learning to read; or not to allow him to extend his knowledge of geography, because he is not a good arithmetician! Rather let us encourage the development of peculiar talents in each individual, thereby to give to all the consciousness of successful progress; and the self-respect arising from this feeling, will impart energy and motive to grapple with those studies which are difficult.
Nothing is of more importance than to watch the progress of the pupils, and remove them from class to class, as soon as they are fit. The child who is not advanced in proper time will retrograde. The sirit of learning flags when allowed to stand still, and it is often