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duce them with a thousandfold increase, for intelligent labor is the only wealth producer. Property is not a natural but a culture-institution. The idea of property is a conception of the human mind: Animal nature knows nothing of it, nature and her objects do not become property before the human mind begins to handle her treasures and to take possession by imprinting upon them the stamp of human will. Look at a watch and compare the trifling value of the dead mineral of which it is made with the price it commands after intelligence and labor have given to it the form in which it moves its many tiny wheels keeping time with the fleeting hours of the day. The difference is nearly equal to the whole value and is the wealth which intelligent labor has added to the comparatively worthless elementary material. Hence the economical interests are benefited by the training of intelligence. Wealth plants and sows itself by paying school taxes and reaps a thousandfold rves for schools are wealth-producers and not merely wealth-consumers. Financial folly may attempt to -save money by stunting education, but then it must not ask for sympathy at the ensuing helpless prostration of the state.
Intelligence is not merely the producer but also the preserver and protector of wealth. Both, capital and labor, require the protection of the State and with us there is but one way in which it can be accorded.
The free state controls its citizens by their voluntary compliance with their own laws; the despotic state by police regulations and military coercion.
Obedience to law however is not a natural gift but one which culture and the slow movement of world-education has given to the human race. Inanimate nature is controlled by forces which leave no choice to will. The animal is as much compelled to yield to its appetites as the world of matter is bound to obey its physical laws. The brute or the savage cannot be ruled by statute paragraphs. The intelligent being alone respects the institutions in which wealth finds security and protection. In order to make a people law-abiding it is necessary to make them intelligent. Hence wealth, in promoting educational purposes and institutions, creates for itself the highest safeguards, and secures lasting protection.
It is true enough that it is possible for unwise enthusiasm to provide an educational armor that may be too ponderous for the strength of a state and which instead of becoming an element of strength is an oppressive burden.
It may be readily admitted as a possibility that there is such a thing as over-burdening a community with educational appliances, but this hardly needs discussion. People are usually not slow in helping themselves when they feel imposed upon by such a system and the practical danger lies quite on the other side.
If the state for the sake of self-preservation must maintain universal education, it follows from this with necessity that it must support Normal Schools. For if there is but one means for the accomplishment of a necessary end, that means itself is necessary. The compulsory necessity of the end allows of no rejection of the necessary means. To favor universal education and to oppose Normal Schools is about as reasonable as to say: “We want good schools, but we shall not trouble ourselves about providing good teachers."
Nor can the economical side of the argument be sustained any better. It may sound paradoxical, but it is nevertheless true to say that the surest way of squandering public money is to try to save money by cutting down the Normal Schools. For when the state has assumed the charge of common-school education, it may certainly refuse to pay for Normal Schools, but it is no longer at liberty to decline to pay for the education of teachers in some other way. The plain truth of the matter is that there are only two ways of having skilled teachers at all. The state may either continue to follow its present plan, and by maintaining Normal Schools pay a moderate sum for the education of each teacher, and thus obtain the services of those who can acquire experience quickly and who bring to their work thorough training and earnest enthusiasm; or, the state may follow the other plan which is to discontinue the Normal Schools. But in that way the state does by no means avoid the necessity of paying for the education of its teachers. When there is no longer any opportunity for previous professional training, positions will be gradually filled with those who know neither the science nor the art of education. These persons may learn the work of their profession by long-continued practice. But during their years of apprenticeship they receive their pay from the state. The state pays for the education of its teachers by this plan as well; and it pays dearly for it. For the raw material that is wasted in this kind of apprenticeship, that is to say, the time and strength of child-life is a rather seri. ous matter, although it cannot be expressed in dollars and cents. Thus, the whole question may be reduced to this: Shall the state offer and pay the teacher's salary for skilled labor only? Then we need Normal Schools. Or is the state willing to waste money by paying the teacher's salary to the unskilled novice? In that case Normal Schools are indeed unnecessary and education descends from the rank of a science to the low level of empirical routine work. Loud as the clamor has been in a few sections of the country, it has not even touched the strong basis of Normal-School interests, namely their firm connection with universal popular education. As long as Normal Schools cling to this connection and find their highest aim in making common-school education more thorough by supplying efficient teachers, they will find a firm support against all attacks in the educational earnestness of the American people.
In the discussion which followed the address, Mr. PHELPs, of Wisconsin, said that a paper of the interest and value of the one read should not be allowed to pass with the reading—that when the main idea of that paper, the idea that after all it is education which is the great wealth producer, is understood we shall have no more of the defective legislation which has been so common, and in consequence of which the salaries of faithful teachers have been reduced. This association is taking hold of this idea that we must have skilled labor-skilled labor in the school-room as well as elsewhere. It matters less what a child is taught than how he is taught. We can not present properly a course of study unless we have ourselves been duly trained. The relation of education to labor is the most important topic before this Association. The value of labor depends on its skill in the school-room as well as elsewhere. We must then have training schools for teachers. These have in the last year been attacked along the whole line, and this partly because the interests of education have become so differentiated, so complex that many of the friends even of education are no longer sufficiently informed with reference to these interests to be able intelligently to defend them. We must have persons who can lead not only within but outside of the school-room.
There being no further remarks on the address of the Presidənt, the paper of Dr. E. C. Hewitt, of the Illinois. Normal University, was read by Mr. S. H. Wuite, of Peoria; subject:
THE RANGE AND LIMITS OF NORMAL-SCHOOL WORK. Normal Schools have had an existence in this country for nearly forty years; their purpose is simple, and may be stated completely in a single, brief proposition, viz.:
To prepare young men and women for the work of Teaching and Managing Schools.
And, yet, simple as the purpose is, there are many problems concerning the Normal-School work that have never been satisfactorily solved. The managers of Normal Schools are by no means agreed as to the work that these Schools ought to attempt, nor as to the manner of carrying on the work that is attempted. The Normal Schools themselves are as varied in their constitution as in their manner of working. The term is applied to Schools established by the States and cities, having for their aim the sole object of the preparation of teachers; to private schools, large and small, whose aim is sometimes equally simple, and sometimes is so comprehensive that the General Department or the Classical Department or the Scientific Department or the Commercial Department, one or all together, overshadow or dwarf the Normal Department until one is constrained to wonder why the name Normal was ever applied. Nor have the Colleges, Seminaries, and Academies, in many instances, failed to add their Normal Departments, which are conspicuously paraded in their catalogues and Courses of Study. And, in the last few years, especially in some of the Western States, County Institutes, of from two to six weeks' duration, have been fond of taking the title of Normal Schools.
Now, in all this, there may be some aspects calculated to disturb the equanimity of the best and most intelligent friends of Normal Schools, and of those who have devoted many of the best years of their lives to this special work. But, to my mind, these facts have more to encourage and to cheer than to dishearten or to vex. Any one who has studied the history of Normal Schools in this country knows that, in the first years, there was nothing in the term to rouse the popular heart, -nothing tending to crowd the halls of an Institution or to bring money into the purses of its managers. It is freely granted that much of the work done in Normal Schools has been of an inferior character-neither clear in its aim, nor skilful in its execution. Even the best workers have had to "feel their
way" along, as it were, with but little in the way of principle or precedent for their guidance. And, still, in spite of all this, the facts above cited clearly show that, with all their crudeness, with all their short-comings and mistakes, Normal Schools have achieved a decided and substantial
Men and women have wrought in them who, by their skill, by their earnestness, by their devotion and unselfishness, by the results that they have attained, have given to the name Normal a popularity that causes it to be coveted, and in some cases appropriated, by those whose right to use it is of the slightest. These workers, some where and in some way, have given to this term a money-value that, in the eyes of shrewd but unscrupulous men, has made it appear to be worth stealing.
Of course, these facts do not prove that Normal Schools have done all they might have done,-all they would have done had obstacles been less formidable, had their methods and systems been more carefully and rationally devised, and more skilfully executed. But, to my mind, they do show conclusively that, as a whole, our Normal Schools have done successful work in the past, which gives good reason to hope for still higher success in the future. We may well look for a more correct appreciation of the scope of their work, more of philosophical and wise planning, and more skill in execution ; for many of the men and woman engaged in this work are people of good sense and earnest purposes, who are not slow in realizing the defects of their present work nor blind to the teachings of their past experience. And the results attained in the School of Experience, though they may be reached somewhat slowly, are clear and trustworthy when once obtained.
The great increase in the number of Schools called by the name of Normal indicates one other encouraging fact, in addition to that already stated, it shows that people are more and more coming to realize the truth that teaching is a work that requires special preparation,—that it is not enough simply to know a thing in order to be able to teach it effectually. A belief in this truth, on the part of a few, led to the establishment of these schools, in the face of prolonged, earnest, and even bitter, opposition. A clear realization of this truth, on the part of the many, will lead not only to a still further increase of the number of such Schools, but to a far more intelligent and efficient working-out of their purpose.
I am well aware that the topic assigned me for this paper is not a new one before this Association; a perusal of our printed volumes will show that, in some form or other, it has come up for treatment or discussion here, at almost every meeting since the Association has had an existence. Nor bave the views and opinions presented upon it been, by any means, harmonious. Our reports show that Normal-School workers have disagreed on these questions radically; and their expressions not unfrequently have seemed to indicate differences greater, both in number and in degree, than really existed. I cannot, therefore, hope to please all in what I shall say, nor can I, in so brief a paper as this, express myself nor fortify my statements, so fully as I should like to do. But, I hope to state clearly some of the conclusions to which many years of observation, thinking, and practical work, in the Normal School, have led me.
No work whose purpose is not clearly understood and kept constantly in view can ever be well done. No matter how good his gun, nor how efficient the ammunition used, nor how skilfully the weapon may be cleaned and charged, the hunter who does not take good aim is likely to return with his game-bag poorly filled. As I have said, the sole and simple aim of the Normal School is to prepare its pupils for the work of teaching and managing Schools. And, where this aim is kept faithfully in view, the Normal School can hardly fail totally of its purpose, even though the work attempted should differ but little from that of the Academy or the Seminary. To this I attribute much of the success that some of our Normal Schools have achieved, in spite of the fact that their work has been almost entirely academic. At any rate, it has partaken of this character to a degree that is disgusting to the theorist, and that will by no means accord with the highest ideal of any intelligent Normal-School worker. Still, it must be evident to every thinker that any youth who learns Arithmetic, for in. stance, with the thought of teaching it again constantly before him, will be sure, on the completion of his work, to find his knowledge of Arithmetic taking an aspect in his own mind very different from what it would have presented, had he studied the subject for practical use only. The same is true of any other branch of School Study.
And I take occasion to remark that the aim of Normal Schools has regard to the most vital want of our whole School System. Among all the things that contribute to make up a good School, the good teacher is incomparably the most important factor. Nothing, in the house, the apparatus, the interest of the community, the System, the methods, nor in anything else can achieve the desired result, even in a reasonable degree, if the teacher be seriously lacking in native ability, in earnestness and integrity of purpose, or in a reasonable degree of preparation. But, if the teacher be right, a good degree of success may be confidently expected whatever else may be wanting. And, to-day, all over our country, really good teachers are not over plentiful. Applicants for teachers' places may swarm ; but every one who has the responsibility of filling these places is painfully aware that candidates possessing exactly the requisites desired are not always forthcoming. To supply just this want is the purpose of our real Normal Schools; and this object is constantly to be considered, whatever the range and limits of the work done in such Schools.
Let me put this down, then, as one of the conclusions pertinent to our discussion:
I. Whatever may be chosen as the range and limit of the work of a Normal School, the one purpose of that work must be kept constantly in view.
The end to be accomplished by the Normal School being thus clearly seen, the kind and amount of work to be done in the way of preparation must be largely determined by the nature of the task confronting the young teacher when his preparation shall be completed. Here, probably, we shall gain something by dividing our subject. And, first, let us consider the MATERIAL on which he has to work.
This is incipient humanity. Children, with minds, hearts, wills, consciences, and bodies, -all, plastic and growing, are put into his hands, to be formed, as nearly as possible, into the highest ideal of manhood and woman.