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real,—the statue stands forth for the admiration of the world, and his name is entered on the rolls of fame.
Is his a work of less dignity, who fashions and forms the man, than his who chisels out the marble representative? The marble will crumble, but the teacher's work will remain. He will leave his impress upon the mind which time will not efface. If he be true to himself and to the world, he shall receive honor of men, and his work will pass in review before Him who hath power to say, " Well done, good and faithful servant."
TEACHER'S DAILY PREPARATION.
[The following communication was placed in the hands of the President of the Institute, and by him referred 10 that body, to be disposed of accoriling to their pleasure. At their direction, it was read by the President, with comments, and afterwards, by a vote of the Institute, referred to the Censors for publication, if it should be thought best, together with the comments. Most of these which are remembered, are subjoined in the form of notes. ]
A late German work, entitled “ A Guide for Teachers,” contains some remarks upon the culture of teachers, which seem particularly appropriate to this occasion. They were evidently written in a society where Normal schools were not established, but the principles are the same, whether carried out by private meetings of teachers for mutual improvement, or by the inore efficient mode of training under the guidance of experienced persons, according to the plan of Normal schools, properly so called. Many persons think the power to teach, a gift of nature, which will find its own sphere in spite of all obstacles, and which does not need and will not grow by cultivation. The following is one section of many excellent counsels given by the German writer to all those who are preparing themselves for the office of teacher.
“Accustom yourselves to the most minute and critical preparation upon the subject in hand, not merely in a general way, but by the examination and study of every paragraph of your text-book.*
“Never teach with a book in hand.
“Record carefully the remarks and additions which you find occasion to make while teaching, after having previously prepared the lesson in the best manner of which you are capable. I
* This is a most important direction. It is only by observing this that the teacher can be so fully possessed of his subject as to be sure that he comprehends it in all its bearings, and so familiar with it as to be able to bring it home to the mind of the learner,
+ This is no less essential. A teacher who is obliged to keep the book in his hand, cannot watch the countenance of the pupil, to ascertain whether he understands and is interested in what is communicated. The object of the teacher should be to find access to the mind of his pupil;—to bring his own mind in contact, as it were, with his pupil's. How can he do this while his whole attention is given to a book ?
# Whilst teaching a subject for the first time, after such full preparation as is supposed above, and while still under the influence of the excitement produced by novelty and recent acquisition, observations will often occur to us of more value to our pupils than the very text which suggested them. These it would be always well to record at the time they occur, or as soon after as possible. They will not be sure to present themselves a second time; or, if they do, they will come without that vivacity of original conception, which is so important to awaken strongly the interest of the learner.
Preparation in the art of teaching ought to be considered essential
"When you have made yourself master of the regular text-book, study other writings and criticisms which handle the same subject; also, all works, pedagogic, didactic, methodical, logical, psychological, artistic, &c., that are adapted to mature a teacher to higher developement.
“ These counsels spring out of the thought that the fruitful activity of the teacher in school chiefly depends upon his accurate acquaintance with his subjects, upon their gradual and unceasing unfolding to his mind, and especially upon his clear consciousness of and insight into their relations. For this reason we require of him, first of all, that he make himself perfectly acquainted with
to every instructer. Books or essays on this subject, containing the mature experience of a teacher, are almost indispensable to a beginner in the art, and will usually he found of value even to the veteran teacher. If one would teach history, for example, successfully, he must naturally desire to know, and he ought to know, what methods have been found best adapted to this end, by those who have been the most successful teachers. Otherwise he will hardly avoid wasting much of his own time and that of his pupils. Books upon the art of reasoning, upon the philosophy of mind, upon taste, and upon rhetoric, however unsuitable they may be for children, at the age at which they are often put into their hands, are important aids to the teacher.
His first object should be to make himself a perfect master of the text-book he uses. Oftentimes, he will be able to do no more. To do less, is to be unprepared to teach. But every teacher who aspires to excellence, should do more. He should not be satisfied to teach Colburn or Davies, but he should teach arithmetic; and, to that end, he should study the science of numbers in all the authors to which he can find access. He will thus obtain a complete command of his subject, and will be able to present it in every point of view which will be likely to fit the capacity of the pupil. Whoever will pursue this course, will find every branch of instruction clothed with an interest which is constantly new.