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tition with Colleges and the University, like all things earthly, have also their faults, which should not be overlooked in the comparative estimate. There are probably some seen or unseen elective affinities, not deserving praise, that have brought their disciples together. They are of the same grade in society, they are alike rich, they go to the same church, are of the same political creed, or they are destined for the same profession. Now the circumstances of society in this country afford an argument against caste and clique, and all narrow and illiberal associations. Our children, when they reach their majority, must go forth into the world. If their experience and knowledge of the diversities of character are then to begin, they are but half edu. cated. When our school system shall have been eliminated of all the fractional shreds of a by-gone theory, in which the classical and the practical are too much disjoined; when the emendations which have been suggested, have been incorporated into, or superimposed upon the ample foundation which a graduated official control and a munificent and wellsecured school fund afford; a citizen may sit down and contemplate with pleasure the educational advantages and privileges which are opening upon his children in common with society around him. An enlightened and patriotic man, looking to the wellbeing and influence of his son in after-life, may say: “ Let his education be begun in the Common School, where he will meet with all classes of boys and all descriptions of character. To guard his moral feelings from contamination, let him be allowed and
encouraged to relate at home whatever he sees and hears among his playfellows, and let his parents approve or disapprove as the case may require. Let him thus early become acquainted with the distinction between right and wrong, good and evil, and taught to cherish the one and avoid the other. He will thus acquire a hardihood of character, a power over his own desires, and a strength of purpose and of will, far superior to the boy who has been kept out of harm's way, and furnished with a private tutor to make the path of learning smooth and pleasant. The stern discipline of a large Common School, composed of boys of every shade of character, is useful to break the will to rightful authority, and cultivate patience and fortitude under evils which must be borne for the sake of after benefit. He who fears to trust his son among the poor boys of the Common School, and therefore sends him to a select school, patronized only by the rich, should remember that the rich have their peculiar vices as well as the poor, and that the effeminacy and peevishness of the spoiled children of fortune, are quite as contagious, and more disastrous in their effects upon the character, than the rude manners, and hard, blunt passions of the sons of poverty."
“ At twelve or thirteen, we may suppose the lad to have completed the studies of the Common School, and to be ready to enter upon a higher course of instruction. If then he can enter upon a course of higher studies without leaving the paternal roof, let him begin the study of Latin and Greek. And here let not a teacher stand at his elbow to remove every difficulty in his way, and think for him as well as instruct. Resolution and self-reliance were never more needed than now. The discipline and encounters of the first school were preparatory to this. Let the powers of his mind be taxed as much as they can bear without discouragement; and let him not only be encouraged, but compelled to think for himself. Too much help at this period is injurious. Large schools have this incidental advantage that they do not allow time for the indulgent teacher to aid in the preparation of the lessons; doing for him what he ought to do for himself.”
ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS IN AMERICAN EDUCATION.
BY CHARLES H. WHEELER,
OF SALEM, MASS.
A CAREFUL survey of the history of mankind; a candid attention to the course of Divine Providence, either general or special; or an enlightened view of the nature of man, would sufficiently indicate those elements of human culture, which should assume the title of essential. If to the impressions thus gained, we add the facts and principles which constitute the history and glory of our own land, we shall be equally certain concerning the character of those elements of American education which have formed, and which are necessary to retain it what it is or at least aspires to be — universal and free. So intimate is the connection of such an education with the existence of a free civil government, so mutual their dependence, so reciprocal their influence, that the pillars of the one are the pillars of the other also; in laying the foundations of the one, we