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interested, and perhaps instructed; but the time was so occupied that there was no opportunity for regular recitation work. No test was made of the pupils' preparation of the lesson; no searching questions were asked; no analysis of the subject was given. It was merely a delightful task to a number of girls by a scholarly gentleman. It was not teaching. In a neighboring school I witnessed a similar recitation, and, while conversing with one of the pupils after class, he slyly remarked, “ We always get Miss — to talk about something when we haven't got our lesson.” Now, the lecture system is beneficial only to advanced pupils, young men and women thirsting for knowledge, who have absorbed all their text-books contain, are eager to know what their professor can 'impart, and whose minds are trained to receive and retain information.*
With young pupils, mere beginners in study, ignorant of the methods of mental acquirement and assimilation, with no especial taste for work and no power of concentration, there must be class drill and proofs of previous labor demanded. The recitation is for the benefit of the pupil, not the teacher. In general, it is mentally more profitable to tell a thought than to receive it. Under the talking system pursued in some schools, the teacher grows much faster than his pupils. He is actively employed all the time; while they are mere recipients, delighted sometimes, indeed, but not held to labor for what they .wish to know. He acquires a choice of words and learns to talk fluently and tell what he knows; while they get neither experience in expression nor criticism on their use of language and their grammatical mistakes.
A little information may often be imparted to great advantage, it is true, but only to enliven the monotony of hard work and to act as a stimulant to fresh ņēmēģti2m2?Â2Ò2Â§Â2âÒ2ÂòÂffiti2\òtiņūņēmēģņēm2?Â?Â2Ò2ÂòÂòÂņēm2/2?Â2 âÒtiti2m22222222 of talking on the part of the teacher is the perfection of a recitation In my own classes, when topical recitations are fully established, I have always required the class to conduct the entire recitation from the blackboard diagrams, with only an occasional suggestion or remark during the progress of the work, and a general commentary at the close.
Second-The teacher makes no point. In the recitation I witnessed there seemed no special goal to be reached, but the pupils were wandering aimlessly about, toiling to get over a certain number of pages of the book. When they finished, it was with an air of relief that another task was performed. On no cheek was there the glow of victory. No one seemed to feel that he had taken a step, a definite, measured step in the path of knowledge, and had gone up a little higher to a better outlook. Neither teacher nor pupil appeared to grasp the relations of that lesson to the one of the day before, and the one assigned for the succeeding day, whereby it became a link in the chain of the term's work, which, if dropped out by inattention or absence, would break the whole asunder.
Now, every lesson should have an object, else the children had better be out on the play-ground, breathing fresh air and developing their muscles. At the close of each lesson the teacher should tell the class the object of the next day's
It is a curious fact that while we are turning to the lecture system from the over-exact textbook recitations of our fathers, the Germans, of whom we learned the new art, are beginning to perceive their mistake, and considering the propriety of introducing recitation drill even in their Universities. Strangely, too, the privilege of attending the so-called " Discipline Exercises." the nearest approach to a regular recitation, is eagerly sought after and granted only to the best scholars.
work, give directions about using it, and remove any insurmountable obstacles, thus preparing the way for intelligent, profitable and economical labor on the part of the class, and preventing the necessity of individual help, which is so annoying to the teacher and often so injurious to the pupil. If the teacher unfortunately uses a text-book which does not give an analysis of the lesson in bold paragraph headings, he should prepare such an outline and let the students classify the lesson. Many stndies admit of a uniform analysis. Thus, in chemistry I have used the following topical outline-Source, Preparation, Properties, Uses, Compounds; and in the periods of Geology-Location, Kind of Rock, Fossils, Remarks. These titles answer as labeled pigeon-holes in which the pupil can sort off all the facts of the lesson, and, to stretch the figure, are like elastic bands, which will expand to receive all the knowledge one may gather in future life. They aid alike in learning, reciting and retaining a lesson, and are invaluable in all teaching and studying worth the name.
Third-Pupils are kept in at recess and after school to study. This is literally a crying evil. It is a custom handed down to us from the past, and sanctioned by age; but teachers are perceiving its enormity, and are fast discarding the practice. It is both unnecessary and injurious. Scholars may be profitably directed to remain after school for the purpose of receiving suggestions, counsel, etc., but not to study, and at recess, never. The object of an intermission is to preserve the health of the pupil. Nature demands this, and it is her right. No teacher should rob a child of legitimate exercise. It is a physical wrong. Moreover, in play the superabundant flow of the animal spirits is worked off, and that force is employed in throwing a ball or running a race which would otherwise find vent in mischief or restlessness. Keeping a pupil after school to learn a lesson is wrong in principle. It begets a dislike for the teacher, the school-room, the study and all connected with it. What should be a delight is made a punishment. Moreover, it punishes the teacher as much as it does the pupil. It wearies him unnecessarily, and, depriving him of time for rest and study, unfits bim for work, and so robs the school of its right-his best services. The difficulty with the pupil is generally an inability to concentrate the mind upon the lesson. If that cannot be secured during fresh, vigorous hours of the day, under the inspiration of the class and the example of companions, the teacher may well despair of success under less favorable conditions.
I cannot sum up the matter better than in the words of Superintendent Harris, " The cure prescribed (i, e, retention after school) only aggravates the disease. Prepare the lesson so that the pupil can carry it by storm, and never allow him to make a dissipated, scattered attack upon it."- National Teachers' Monthly.
BY H. A. M. HENDERSON.
THE progressive nature of man is not made more apparent in any peculiarity
I of his being than in the art of building. None of the inferior animals ever change the character of their abodes. The bee constructs its cell and organizes the industry of its hive upon exactly the same principles of architecture and political economy that the bee did that sported in the Garden of Eden and sipped nectar from its fragrant flower cups. Its architecture is perfect, and no possible improvement can the genius of man suggest as to the method of the building of its storehouse of sweets. No Michael Angelo has ever risen among the bees. The youngest of these busy insects has to undergo no apprenticeship in joinery, no elementary studies in geometry or drafting. The beaver's dam, the work of an unvarying instinct, is exactly suited to its aquatic habits, and no tools are needed beyond their sharp teeth and trowel-like tales. Each of the feathered tribe constructs its nest after an unchangeable model. But man, expelled from Eden, dwells first in tents made of coarsest fabrics woven from fibrous trees or their barks. Then he dwells in tabernacles of adobe, sun-dried bricks; then he levies tribute on forests and quarries, and in comely shapes builds of timber or stone. The mines furnish their ornaments, and the printed forms of nature suggest the symmetry and shapes of his dwelling. The houses of a people are always clear indices of their civilization. The rude habitation of the Greenlander, the splendid mansions, palaces and cathedrals of the cultured European, stand as indicators of their respective talents and tastes. As the laws of hygiene become better understood, attention is bestowed upon ventilation and warming; as the esthetic qualities of a people are raised they levy on all nature to multiply conveniences and comforts. Stability, too, is in the ratio of the habits of a people. A nomadic people are content with tents that are easily moved, and where the manor-house, under the law of primogeniture, operates, is built, it is erected for a long line of generations.
In the early stages of American civilization everything in the nature of building is temporary. As long as titles are easily transferred and “go west" is ringing in the ears of our people, we may expect temporary buildings. On the frontiers of civilization we look for nothing but speedily constructed residences of logs, or unplaned boards. The English, having a crystalized civilization, build for centuries. The American, mobile and migratory, does not care for taste and stability while the morrow may find him on the emigrant's path and his head turned towards the setting sun. It is no wonder that in the country districts the nearest "make-shifts” have been resorted to in the provision of school-houses. As long as the division lines are almost as imaginary as the parallels and meridians on the earth, and each successive commissioner is liable to be governed by his caprices, so long may we look for the rudest and flimsiest structures in which to carry on the business of education. The itinerant photographer constructs his “art palace” on wheels, and it would be quite as well for the pedagogue to follow his example if he would make sure of shelter from storm. When people know that their lines are cast permanently for themselves and children, we may reasonably expect respect for both durability and taste, convenience and comfort. As a rule, no class of buildings bear such a hateful, repulsive look as school-houses. They are generally built on the bleakest and most barren spots, selected as sites for school-houses because good for nothing else. They are, too, in most cases, constructed for the pressing necessities of a district, and are mere temporary expedients.
Very many persons suppose that because a house is to be built of logs that no principles of architectural taste are to be consulted. The square pen,
equally suited for the sty, is generally the model of construction. Below we give a cut of a more shapely edifice than is commonly seen upon the outskirts of civilization or in our mountain districts.
This building, when provided with the windows seen in the engraving, and the broad open chimney stack, suggestive of the large fire-place within, and tightly chinked, is not without its merits. When closed the log heap and the great chimney channel are two elements of fine ventilation, and a considerable degree of bodily comfort. Substitute, however, a sheet iron stove, and do away with the open chimney, and you have a close box for the confining of that deadly poison, carbonic acid gas. But
see what can be done with logs? Now, this building is really tasteful in appearance, and where adapted to a rural landscape, may attract and deserve more admiration than more ambitious structures formed of sawed lumber, or piled up of stone or brick. The deep, sloping roof wears a gothic aspect, and the pointed gables and finial yield an ornamental aspect as well-fitted to the character of the builing as are the cloud-climbing spires and manifold nerrets of the cathedral, to that master-piece
of architectural genius of Milan. Nothing can be more repellent to taste than to see a village residence, with an ambitious tower, situated on a low piece of ground, and the material wood, painted in imitation of stone, thus fairly caricaturing every right idea we have of a feudal castle, built for defense against the heavy attacks and prolonged sieges of semi-barbarious warfare. Or to behold a little church, built after the model of some great minster, which covers acres of ground, and is simply sublime because of its magnificence and magnitude. How much more indication of true taste the simple cottage, or symmetrical chapel, totally unpretentious and suggesting nothing but the conveniences and comforts of home-life," the quiet, unostentatious spirit of mistic worshipers. Now, in a neighborhood where the residences are all of pioneer pattern, it would be a manifest burlesque to build a great, pretentious structure and dub it a “College," suggesting, at once, a large city, graded school building that had strayed out into the country to “take an airing." How much better to express the taste of the neighborhood in a building of logs, put together in the really attractive manner represented in the elevation we give. To construct this model, choose logs of durable timber about one foot thick. The sills should be of larger timber squared, having the floor closely mortised therein and held up by the bearing beam in the center. Of course smaller logs would be used for the necessary partitions. The ground plan and detailed descriptions for constructing this house may be found in our “Manual of School-house Architecture,” which we furnish free of cost to all Kentucky Trustees, and to others at the trifling price of fifty cents for a book containing 110 engravings and 132 pages of descriptive letter-press.
[CONTINUED IN OUR NEXT.]
NOTATION IN MUSIC. THE common system of notation which prevails in all civilized nations, dates
1 as far back as the tenth century. It underwent many changes, and by the multiplicity of its characters became very complicated. But these were gradually dropped, until it was so simplified as to be fully satisfactory to all real musicians. It continues to be so to all those whose musical knowledge is suffi. cient to enable them to take an enlarged view of the subject. Others, however, having but little practical musical knowledge, though perhaps learned and excellent men, have often attempted to introduce other systems. We have seen many such, both European and American, but no one which did not seem to prove that its author had but a superficial knowledge of music. It seems hardly possible to invent any system of notation furnishing so great a facility for reading all kinds of music as does that now in use. Any teacher who pursues a method of instruction in which no sign or character is presented to the pupil until it is needed as a symbol of something which is already known, will soon be fully convinced of the following things: The common system of notation is. as easy, being thus gradually introduced, as it is possible that any system can be ; it contains all the characters necessary to represent the established facts of tones, and it contains no signs or characters but such as are actually needed. In its commencement it is sufficiently simple for a little child, and in its expansion it becomes sufficiently extensive to record the inspirations of a Beethoven! It has been truly said that in its present actual condition, our musical notation is 'a complete and logical system which can no longer be modified or changed without injury.--Seward.