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ment or revolting passion. Actions are the offspring of thoughts, and if carefully interpreted, not only serve as an index to the mind, but also as the true exponent of the heart—the feelings which give complexion and character to the act. Physical discipline is the restraint placed upon the habits and actions of
It has reference to the proper cultivation of the habit, as well as the regulation of the act itself. Feasting the eye with appropriate scenery, regaling the ear with harmonious sounds, indulging the taste with a wholesome nutriment, cultivating all the senses so as to produce the greatest amount of happiness without the violation of any natural or moral law, placing the appetites under proper restraints at a proper age, controlling the habits and actions so as to secure the preservation of health, are the general characteristics of physical discipline.
Discipline implies—first, a rule, and secondly, the execution of that rule. What discipline is, has already been stated, but how to discipline remains to be noticed. The theory and practice of government in schools are by far the most important part of a teacher's duties. In order to prepare a suitable code of rules for securing the restraints already mentioned, the teacher must, to a great extent, comprehend the secret springs of human action. He should not only be a legislator, that he may enact a law, but he should be a philosopher, that he may know what law to enact. Though his government is patriarchal or parertal, yet he may derive instruction from the study of municipal law and the object of civil punishment. And having ascertained the best mode, and enacted the best rule, yet another difficulty is presented in its execution. He is not only the philosopher to devise, the legislator to enact, but the executive to administer the law. This is practical discipline, and the most critical part of a teacher's duties. In order judiciously to enforce a law or to inflict its penalty, one should comprehend the object of punishment. Punishment is not only a “terror to evil doers and a praise of those who do well,” but it has immediate reference to the reformation of the recipient. The question then resolves itself into this: How can we best reform ? The obvious answer is, by reaching the moral nature. Without this, genuine reform is impracticable. One may correct an improper habit for the time, but to produce a lasting good, the moral man must be convinced that what has received his sanction is wrong. There must first be a knowledge of wrong, which is imparted by enlightening the mind. But this is not sufficient. It must be followed by the conviction that wrong committed will be followed by a punishment, just as surely as effect follows cause. Physical punishment inflicted, separate and apart from moral training, is not only unwholesome discipline, but entirely ruinous to every nature of man. It hardens the heart, renders the intellect stolid, and by unduly exciting the passions, abuses the physical functions. It is not argued that physical punishment is useless, but only that it is fruitless of good results, unaccompanied by any moral reasoning. If administered in perfect accordance with “the law of kindness"-with the assurance that it is for present and future good, and not to gratify the malicious feelings of the administrator-it may do good. But the grand object of all punishment, whether physical or not, is so to reach the heart as to produce willing and voluntary reformation.
But the disciplinarian has other duties to perform. He is also the judge, both of the nature and magnitude of the offense and of the kind and quantity of punishment to inflict. In his office are combined and blended all the official functions of State authority; and complete success depends very much upon the skill manifested in meting out the punishment due to offences committed.
In school discipline, it is necessary not only to restrain and properly cultivate the intellectual, moral and physical nature, to design philosophically, to enact judiciously, to administer understandingly, and to judge of the quantum of punishment—all of which duties devolve upon every teacher of our public schools—but he must himself be a walking, living example of right.
Preceptive teaching may do with some children who are daily within the ballowing influences of living example at home; but the great responsibility of the true disciplinarian only appears in its magnitude, when he is viewed as the examplar of hundreds of children who have no examplars at home. For this reason a teacher cannot discipline a variety of character, placed in the same room, under the same laws, unless he is a true model for all to imitate. While preceptive teaching may occasionally succeed, practical example is the great power which influences and disciplines a school. The teacher should be a model in intellect, in morals, in manners, in obedience to the laws of the land, and in the observance of the laws of nature.
These remarks might be greatly amplified, as the theme is fruitful; but a disposition to avoid trespassing upon time has induced the writer to give merely a condensed statement of the nature, method and character of true school discipline. For the errors which may be manifest, he asks the indulgence of the critical, and hopes the “law of kindness" may be largely recognized in the reception or rejection of these remarks.
From the Alabama Educational Journal.
YETHOD OF TEACHING ARITHMETIC.
In teaching mental Arithmetic the instructor takes especial pains that the lesson should not be so long that his pupils may fail to master it all. Every learner must have a text-book, and the solutions must be given in accordance with a particular form, beginning at the beginning, and ending as in the syllogism, with a formal conclusion. When the hour for class has arrived, the books must all be left at the desk, and a settled order assumed upon the benches. The teacher then reads a question and calls immediately
upon some member of the class. As any one is liable to be called upon, he is sure of full attention, for it is a decided disgrace for any pupil to be found unable to give the question itself. The individual called upon rises in his place promptly, and repeats the question distinctly. For this I have three reasons :
1. That I may be sure he understands the question. 2. That his memory may be strengthened.
3. That he may acquire confidence and accuracy in speaking when others are listening to him. He then proceeds with the solution and conclusion, when he sits down; and if any others think they can do it better, their hands are raised. During this recitation the teacher does not draw out by questions; the pupil must be self-reliant. If he is unable to proceed with questioning at that time, he must give the floor to others who can. In such cases his successor must resume just at the point the former failed, it not being necessary that what was right should be repeated. All the questions in the lesson having been asked, the teacher, chooses others involving the same general solution; these may be either extempore, or, if an author is at hand, from his pages. In this way pupils soon learn that it is their province to do the work at recitation; and in cases of difficulty do not defer to that hour the request for explanation.
In written Arithmetic, the same principles are carried out so far as practicable. Before assigning the lesson, the teacher has assured himself, by examination of his text-book, of the extent he may reasonably expect his class to master; and he explains to them, at the time of giving out the lesson, the process which they are expected to explain at the next recitation. He affords to all the opportunity of asking questions upon any point that may not be understood. They know distinctly that the time of recitation, except in peculiar emergencies, is not to be consumed by their teacher's labor, but that they must at that hour be prepared to do the work. They know, besides, that their teacher will take pleasure in rendering them any needed assistance beforehand, so that there can be no excuse for failure.
When the recitation hour has come, the books are left at the desk, and if the class is small, the slates with them; if large, each pupil must bring a slate and pencil. Having previously prepared himself on that particular lesson, the teacher does not necd the book until it is time to give examples upon the board; hence the first question is never, “ where do you commence?" but, "what is the subject of this recitation ?” This is followed, in rapid succession, by others, that are adapted to test the knowledge that has been attained. The teacher having no occasion to use the book in his instruction, becomes in the eyes of the pupils a living book, and they strive to become independent like him. Their interest is thus maintained; and as they catch the inspiration of the hour, they feel exalted by a conception of their own powers, and are ready to grapple with sterner truths than any yet unfolded.
Having become satisfied that his labor is progressing well, the teacher now opens the text-book and calls upon some one in the class to go to the board. He promptly passes, takes his position at one extremity, puts down "No.1" for his example, which is immediately read, repeats the example and proceeds to his business. A second is called, and taking his position next, writes “No. 2," repeats his question ; and so on until the board is filled. As soon as any example is completed, the worker of it resumes his seat. By the time the last one for whom there is room has repeated his question, the first one should be ready for explanation, and is called upon not by name but by number. If incorrect, or very imperfectly explained while the work is correct, some hands are pretty sure to be raised, and another trial is given to the example. As soon as it is disposed of, the explainer erases it, and a new pupil proceeds to occupy the place, while a second explanation is going on.
The questions assigned are those which the author gives; but in review others are frequently selected, to see how well and promptly the principles can be applied in new cases. It is well if the pupils themselves can be induced to make questions under the rules. I believe they are almost always pleased with the idea of having new ones proposed. Not unfrequently when the consideration of a rule has been completed, the teacher should assign to the class some general question covering all the varieties they have been over, for them to think of, and answer at the commencement of the following recitation.
For the Journal of Education,
TEA OHERS' SALARIES.
Messrs. Editors: I noticed in an article of your selection from the Nero York Teucher, on “Teachers' Salaries,” under topic 2d, the following observation : “ If teachers would make money, they must be keepers at home."
I think I shall not disagree with a majority of teachers, in asserting my opinion that teachers should, out of their compensation, be able to deposit their “fifty dollars ” in the “Savings' Bank,” at the close of each term, and enjoy a pleasant recreation trip, even though it should chance to "benefit the railroad siockholders " and the “ first class hotels.” I cannot believe a teacher's occupation is so much inferior to that of a bar-tender” or counting clerk, as to limit his salary to so meagre a pittance as to deprive him the enjoyment of a vacation visit with the loved ones of his, perchance, distant home, or a short excursion to restore vigor to his exhausted mental or physical organization, after a long and tedious application to hard labor in our (at present) ill-ventilated school-rooms.
But, setting aside these inducements, we believe it is a duty as well as a pleasure that a teacher should travel, in order to gain that general knowledge of persons, places and things, which can only be acquired by traveling; that knowledge which “Geography and Bayard Taylor's travels” do not impart, nor the limited circle of his own little town afford.
We believe that a teacher should not only possess a knowledge of books, but of the social customs of at least his own nation; that his manners should be polished, and his actions refined; that he should be instructed in the calisthenics of the great school of life, and versed in its unwritten library, and not an artificial pedagogue, manufactured within the dim college walls, by some A. M. or A. B., and sent forth stereotyped to take his place in our public schools.
To be a popular teacher, in this progressive age, one must be constantly acquiring instruction. The scholar of fifty years ago is not prepared to take charge of a public school under the present system of teaching. The demand is for the scholar of to-day to fill the teachers place, and if talent and culture are desirable qualifications, why not compensate these, as well as the ability to measure tape or wield the tools of the mechanic? Is it because the mind is of inferior value, that those employed in its culture must be limited to wages barely sufficient to satisfy the necessities of the present? or should the salaries be increased in proportion to the exertion requisite to fill their places with honor, as instructors of mind ? If the latter, then it should be unnecessary for them to be “keepers at home, to enable them to make the last few years of their lives comfortable."
And teachers, you who, like myself, love to travel, do not hesitate to. deposit your “fifty dollars ” in your pocket, and, when it is time, invest such a portion of it as is necessary in “railroad tickets," and enjoy a pleasant vaeation trip; and, step aside with me while I whisper in your ear, strike for bigher wages when you get home, and see if there is any preference for the teacher who travels.
EDUCATION OF THE AGRICULTURALIST.-No man is so high as to be independent of the success of this great interest; no man is so low as not to be affected by its prosperity or decline. Agriculture feeds us; to a great degree it clothes us; without it we could not have manufactures, and we should not have commerce. These all stand together, but they stand together like pillars in a cluster, the largest in the middle, and that largest is agriculture. We live in a country of small farms and free-hold tenements; a country in which men cultivate with their own hands their own fee-simple acres, drawing not only their subsistence, but also their spirit of independence and manly freedom from the ground they plow. They are at once its owners, its cultivators, and its defenders. The cultivation of the earth is the most important labour of men. Man may be civilized in some degree, without great progress in manufactures, and with little commerce with his distant neighbors; but without cultivation of the earth, he is, in all countries, a savage.—Daniel Webster.