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6. How to teach History. - As preliminary to the “Suggestions to Teachers " which follow this preface, it may be proper to suggest that the first and most important thing to be accomplished by teaching our history in the schools, is to create and develop a love for history in the minds of the children. Hence mere memorizing from the pages of the book to be recited (and then forgotten) is entirely out of place. The story must be made interesting, and to do this much collateral reading from narratives of greater detail, especially upon the most important topics and branches of the subject, will be found absolutely essential.
Here it should be observed that it is by no means necessary that every school should study all the subject matter of this book. Many things may be gone over cursorily or even omitted altogether. The character of the school and of the class, and the amount of time at the teacher's disposal, will govern this matter.
In the making of this book the authors have had many advantages. It is the result of a lifetime of critical study on the part of one author, and of rare opportunities at Harvard University during three years of post-graduate study, preceded by an experience of ten years' teaching in secondary schools, on the part of the other.
The authors desire to call special attention to the unusually attractive typography and general mechanical execution of the book. The cuts which so finely embellish the work have been chosen with care, and in most cases engraved expressly for it. The maps, also, both colored and uncolored, have been prepared with great pains and by the best artists. Every small map printed with the text has been engraved from drawings by the authors, with special care to illustrate the text, and make the geography an important aid in understanding the historical sequence of events. Teachers and pupils will find that the full-page colored maps are an important aid to a clear and complete knowledge of the history.
The manuscript has been read and carefully examined by half a dozen experts, — teachers, literary men, and historians. The authors are under special obligations to Gen. H. B. Carrington, LL.D., author of “Battles of the American Revolution," for a critical examination and many valuable suggestions; to Mr. M. T. Pritchard, Master of the Everett School, Boston; and Col. Charles W. Johnson, who have read the work in manuscript.
The book is commended to the teachers of America with the hope that they will find it reliable, interesting, and useful.
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