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&c. 2d. See that the pen is held correctly and the writing position of the body and fingers, &c., is maintained by each pupil. 3d. See that every pupil clearly comprehends what is to be done, and how to do it as directed. Experience will enable you to do all things at a glance, and administer the necessary instruction where needed.
“ It will thus be apparent that no faithful, conscientious teacher, or assistant, will allow their attention to be diverted from the writing, or to be divided between teaching and other subjects, such as writing up records, gossiping, &c. Remember, · As is the teacher, so will be the pupils.”
DOUBLE YOUR DILIGENCE.
“WHEREFORE! Why double your diligence at this time, any more than at any other time ?”
Simply because “ this time” is not like “any other time.” “Desperate cases demand desperate remedies”; and the desperate remedy of war is now being applied in a most desperate manner to cure the most desperate disease with which our country has ever been afflicted. Every one knows or ought to know, the deleterious effects which war always produces upon the morals of any country in which it may be waged. It is still fresh in our minds, that the war with Mexico was accompanied by, and, for some time, followed with an alarming increase of crime all over the United States. If this was the result upon the morals of our country, superinduced by a war, carried on beyond our borders, to what an alarming, a truly frightful extent, must a war in our very midst—and the worst form of war, a civil war — increase the amount of crime, and deteriorate the morals of our whole land.
War arouses the dormant propensities of vulgar humanity, and places the intellectual and moral powers in abeyance. All war has ever had the same effect; for excitement of every character spreads among those liable to it. The present war will' slay more people at home than on the field of battle. And it will be noticed that there will be a great and rapid increase in the number of the inmates of alms-houses, jails, houses of correction, and States-prisons. As it is generally known that these things are always the concomitants and results of war, all that is necessary is to call more especial attention to these intellectual and moral dangers. The great mass of the friends
of morals, of religion and its hand-maid, education, must be aroused, in these extraordinary times, to a corresponding extraordinary effort, to a doubling of their diligence; to mitigate these evil influences and effects, and stay and roll back the flood-tide of crime, pouring in torrents all over the land. If our adult population are in such imminent danger, in how much greater danger are our youth, of being drawn into the fearful vortex and swept away to everlasting ruin! The evil effects of this war will not cease with this generation.
The TEACHERS of our land are the especial guardians of our youth. They possess an almost unlimited power over their destinies. It is, therefore, to the teachers that we must look for efficient help in this hour of great need. If it is the teachers' peculiar work to attend to the moral training of those placed under their care, in ordinary times, how much more imperative becomes that duty in times like these.
Brethren of the profession, gird on your armor and be ye men! Put on your harness and promptly meet your responsibilities ! Double your diligence; aye, if need be, treble it, quadruple it! This is a part of the great work to be done, to purify and exalt us as a Nationto make us truly great and Free. It is your part of the work in our national redemption; and in performing it you are as justly entitled to the appellation patriots, as those who fight upon the battle-fieldas those who pour out their hearts' blood in defence of the glorious old flag! Your work, like theirs, is a work of pure patriotism. In the final issue, more, perhaps, wili depend upon you and your work than upon the army and its work.
While duty, interest, morality, patriotism, all call upon teachers to double their diligence in guarding our youth against the greater influx of crime, and to act as conservators in community, all friends of Education - consequently, of Christianity, Freedom, Republican institutions, of Humanity — are loudly, urgently called upon to double their diligence, and work for the same end. Ministers, parents, teachers, all in every station, should work together, not only to save our youth, but to guard society at all points, and in all conditions ; of all ages, and of both sexes. The Church, the Sabbath School, the Day School, the Lecture-room, the Family circle, should all make extra exertions, under a full sense of what is demanded by the exigencies of the times.
This being admitted, the question arises, “ Are all these parties fully aware of what is demanded of them; and are they making an intelligent, effective, necessary use of the means to accomplish the end ?”
Teachers, be the case as it may with the other agencies, let it never be said that we either delayed or faltered, hesitated or vascillated, in doing our part in this important work. Our noble profession stands before the world as the embodiment of Patriotism. Let us ever keep our escutcheon bright and stainless! Now is the time to work.Iowa School Journal.
dy propereat obsta of it,
Having been obliged to close my last article rather abruptly, I will seize upon the first opportunity in this to present what may be said in defense of the teacher. That very great ignorance exists on the subject among teachers, as already asserted, no one will pretend to deny; and the remedy proposed will be found to be entirely efficacious; but, alas, there is one great obstacle, of a very practical nature, in the way of a successful application of it, and what may unquestionably be regarded as the prime cause of this state of things: The pecuniary compensation is far too inadequate to induce young men and young women to fit themselves for the work, or to enter upon it with any view to permanent occupation.
Nearly all the avenues of business, the more lucrative and in the eyes of the world - more honorable professions offer to young men greater inducements, promise more sure and ample rewards; and if they enter upon teaching at all, they do so merely as a temporary employment for which they have no special fitness, and certainly without any interest in it, regarding it as merely a stepping-stone to something else. The wages of common day laborers now-a-days are more than those of most male teachers of common schools ; and the miserable pittance allowed to female teachers in most schools is far less; and any advocate of cheap schools or cheap teachers should blush to say in defense of such a system, that women earn more in teaching than in any other employment. It makes very little difference with many people in many places what the qualifications of the teacher are;—the all-important consideration in their minds being that he shall work cheap. The following quotation from an old book is right to the point: “It has always been surprising to me, that people in general are more willing to pay their money for anything else than for the one thing needful, that is, for the education of their children. Their tailor must be a workman; their carpenter, a workman; their hair-dresser, a workman; their hostler, a workman; but the instructor of their children must work cheap!” The appropriations of some towns for the support of schools, as reported in the newspapers and committees' reports, is only the paltry sum of $500, while it ought to be $5,000, which is only ten times as much; while the results accruing from the superior advantages afforded by a wise and judicious expenditure of the $5,000 would be a thousand times greater than in the former case. This is no exaggeration. The towns can afford it. Indeed, they cannot afford not to do it. Yes, afford it far better than they can afford to license rum-shops and other nuisances, which both the letter and the spirit of all laws — that are laws — prohibit. The full force of the last assertion and especially the meaning of the parenthetical clause, we can hardly hope the present generation will duly understand or appreciate.
But, bad as this state of things is, it is far better than some years ago. Great progress has been made and is still going on.
There is every reason for encouragement. Men begin to realize more fully than ever before, as we are emerging from this civil war of which ignorance is the chief instrumental cause, that education is the only safeguard of our liberties; a sentiment coëqual in importance with that immortal declaration of the “Father of his Country”: 6. The price of liberty is eternal vigilance.” Education is here used in its broadest sense, including Christian, moral and intellectual education. As the people have grown more wise and magnanimous in these respects, the improvement among teachers has fully kept pace; and books also have been greatly improved. But the Grammar books have not been correspondingly improved. Now, since these things are so, - and who can dispute it?—is it to be wondered at that a study of the nature of Grammar especially should be so universally unappreciated ? The causes already explained are sufficient of themselves, as no intelligent person will pretend to deny, to produce just the results with which we are acquainted. But there is another, already asserted, which I have placed myself under obligation to prove true.
If I seem to have said more than is necessary to refute the arguments of those— few, it is to be hoped, — who discard the use of textbooks in certain studies, it may hereafter be seen that I have a double purpose in view; and the second is to show, if text-books are so use
ful, how important that they should be good ones, as well as how pernicious is their effect, when relied on by incompetent teachers, if they are bad ones. After having exonerated in some measure the teacher, we shall be obliged to throw the blame partly on the ignorance, pusillanimity and avarice of the people wherever it exists; but mainly upon the books. Space would not permit— if I were able,– to lay down in the outset what I consider to be a model text-book ; and then to show wherein our books differ from that. It may be easier to tear down than to build up; and I could justly hope to be able at least to upset some of the absurb theories and practices that have been insidiously working their way into the books, and worse, into the minds and teachings of many good scholars. We have text-books in the sciences which are almost perfect models in their way, as geometries, algebras, etc., I might except some arithmetics,—readers and spellers, philosophies, geographies, Greek and Latin grammars, and other text-books in the foreign languages, all, or nearly all, that could be desired. But the English grammars by the side of these present a sorry picture. Compare critically our English grammars in general with those model standard text-books, Schmitz Latin Grammar, Andrews and Stoddard's Latin Grammar, and later and still better, Harkness' Latin Grammar, and then Crosby's and Kühner's and Hadley's Greek Grammars, and what a contrast! Why should not our English grammars be as good as those of foreign languages ?
I propose to show in what English grammars in general are defective; also, to show that there are other causes than the incompetency of authors. In entering upon a field of investigation or criticism so extensive, I shall be obliged to state some things in general terms, and some in particular; and if I shall not deem it expedient, considering the limits of my space, to prove to the satisfaction of the reader some general statements, I trust that the arguments I shall adduce in particular cases will be found unanswerable. English grammars in general are illogical in general plan and treatment of the subject, superficial and deficient inasmuch as they do not present the whole truth on some important subjects, incorrect in classification, definitions and statement of principles, inconsistent and contradictory both with themselves and with each other; and, as if this were not enough, they are presented to us in the cheapest and meanest form of mechanical execution ; and, to cap the climax of absurdities, if you should read Gould Brown's “ Grammar of English Grammars,” his examples