Page images

Stouber soon procured a better teacher and ducted, greatly depended upon habits of the ear. caused lesson books in reading and spelling to be liest formation. The female teachers, (condue. printed for the use of the school, and built a log trices,) who had charge of the little children, hut for the school-house. The satisfaction and learned to relieve instruction by amusement. The improvement soon exhibited by the pupils lite. children were taught to sew and knit, they were rally turned the parents' hearts to their chil. indulged with pictures to look at, and were indren; they delighted in what gratified the latter, structed in geography from maps, constructed and desired for themselves the instruction denied for their especial use. They sung hymns and to their childhood.

songs, and ihe most scrupulous care was taken In 1767, Stouber was succeeded by John Fre. that they should speak with strict propriety, and derie Oberlin, a native of Strasbourg. Seven. thus the patois (their local dialect) gave place teen years of tolerable culture had advanced his to a purer speech. During the whole course of parishioners beyond their primitive barbarism, instruction these children were taugh: reading, but they still stood in need of better instruction. writing, arithmetic, geography, astronomy, na: Oberlin did not concern himself with children tural history, music and drawing, but no gram. ehiefly, he extended his good offices to the wants mar at all. Soon the inhabitants of Strasbourg, of the whole people. He taught the men to and the neighboring towns came to look at the make roads and bridges, and persuaded them to wonders which one man had effected, and send their sons to the city of Strasbourg, where charmed at his success, the rich and the benevothey were taught mechanic arts, and then, re. lent offered him the most liberal aid. Subscrip: turning to the valley, became masons, carpen. tions of money for his use poured in, and well ters, glaziers and smiths. Wheel carriages be did Oberlin appropriate this bounty ; such boun. came common, wretched cabins were converted ty as we have no need of for such purposes. The into snug dwellings, and the mothers of families state is our benefactor and God is our benefactor. having better habitations, became better house. What the state gives to every district in our state, wives. The art of reading became general, and and our own means, if we have the heart to use Bibles being circulated, the influences of religion them, will suffice to educate our children, so became more authoritative, and the rude lan that they will compare worthily with those of any guage of the people was altered by degrees to other people. the purity and propriety taught in the books The children of Oberlin's schools were espewhich they read, not by any grammars, which cially taught sentiments of piety, not of intole. are. indeed, subsequent to language, and not in rance; brotherly kindness and Christian morali. advance of it, according to some people. ty; the utmost civility of manners and the most

The soil of this rocky district was improved careful neatness. They were required to be by severe but intelligent labor, guided by the clean when they came to school, and the schoolgood pastor, and planting and grafting were in. rooms, and all approaches to them, were also troduced, so that the waste wilderness was suc. kept exquisitely clean. This is a matter in ceeded by the nursery, the orchard and the gar. which children will readily concur and take den ; and thus the agriculture of these poor pride in, if it be insisted upon, and represented mountaineers was raised from a toilsome and in- to be indispensable, as it is in truth indispensa. efficient practice to a productive science. As the ble, as eminently conducive to self respect and comforts of life increased, so did the population, all decorum. and in the course of time the little school-house The children in the Ban de la Roche, were of Stouber, was aot only too small for the aug. taught from things as well as from books ; they mented numbers of children, but it fell into de. were sent into the woods and fields to search for cay. The inhabitants of the district were divid. indigenous plants and to make collections of ed into four parishes, and each of these parishes them. They were encouraged to plant seeds and stood in need of a school-house. The people at cultivate their own little gardens, and were in. the first proposal would not hear of new school structed in copying flowers and other objects houses, nor were they always ready to follow from nature. They were also taught that they out Oberlin's suggestions in other matters. They lived for society and the public good, and that did not always comprehend his plans nor appre. they must do nothing that might injure the com. hend his motives ; they clung to many old cus munity. The notions of citizenship and public toms, and sometimes refused to submit to inno spirit were thus early inculcated in them. vations. Some men, more blinded than the rest, Mr. Legrand, a Swiss gentleman, was per: on one occasion agreed to waylay and beat the suaded at a late period of Oberlin's ministry, to good Oberlin, and on another to plunge him into fix his abode in the valley, and to introduce there a cistern. Learning their design in time to pre. a ribbon manufactory which employed many pare for violence he met his enemies with cour hands. age and calm remonstrance. In time his pru. “ Conducted by Providence," says this gen: dence, his example and his services, conquered tleman, " into this remote valley, I was the all prejudices, and at length, he had the concur. more struck with the sterility of its soil; its rence of all his parishioners to build the new straw thatched cottages, the apparent poverty school-houses and carry out all his plans. , of its inhabitants, and 'the simplicity of their

Oberlin engaged zealously in the preparation fare, from the contrast which these external of masters for the new schools, and he also car. appearances formed, to the cultivated conversa ried the principle of education further than it tion which I enjoyed with almost every indivi: had ever before gone in any country. He was dual I met, and the frankness and confidence of the founder of infant schools. He saw that al. the little children, who extended their hands to most from the cradle children were capable of me in the most engaging

manner. I have

now instruction ; that evil habits began much earlier resided anong them for five years, in the midst than is generally believed, and that the facility of a people whose manners are refined and whose with which advanced education might be con. minds are enlightened by the instructions re:

ceived from the earliest infancy. To be sur. This improvement which I would propose, and rounded by such amiable and intelligent beings, which is louldly called for, is, that it should conreconciles my family to the privations we must tain the most correct pronunciation of the geonecessarily experience in our seclusion.” graphical names. Few only are acquainted

It must be obvious that a great increase in the with the proper pronunciation of these names, value of property, as well as in the amount of and scholars as well as teachers, demand somecomfort was produced by the increased intelli: thing to obviate this difficulty. The object can gence of the mountaineers. The transformation be attained very easily by arranging the names thus wrought in an indigent and ignorant people in the key in a manner somewhat similar to the solely by the power of instruction, guided by words in a lexicon; that is, write the name, and wisdom and benevolence, was not accomplished to its right, place the pronunciation. I think it in a day, but it was genuine and demonstrable, would not secure the object desired to have a and intelligence of it spread far and wide. The separate work containing these pronunciations, king of France, Louis XVIII, made Oberlin a but that they should be in the key. member of the Legion of Honor, and the venera. But if the improvement cannot be made in the ble man might be seen with the badge upon his key as now arranged, I think either Mr. Mitchbreast after he had reached his eightieih year. ell or some one else, should immediately issue a His little settlement was visited with admiration new one. If I mistake not, this can easily be by travellers from distant countries. This ex. done, by referring to Worcester's Lexicon, which cellent person died in 1827, full of years and contains these proanciations, or to some other honors.

work. I have no hesitation in saying, that if It is but justice to the female sex to relate, such a work should appear, it would be pur. that Oberlin was greatly assisted in his duties, chased by the districts which have these maps, first by his wife and afterwards by a member of as well as by many of our instructors in com. his household, Louisa Schepler. This pious and mon schools. energetic woman received one thousand franks

AN OLD TEACHER, from the bequest of M. Montyou, a French gen.

For the District School Journal. tleman, who left that sum to be annually be. stowed as a reward to obscure virtue.

MORAL EDUCATION. Our social circumstances are every where dif. Mr. Dwight-It is with peculiar satisfaction ferent from those of the peasantry among the that the friend of educational improvement witthe Vosnes mountains, but there are waste places nesses the efforts now being made to incorporate among us, and in all places the need of similar moral training, as a fundamental and important instruction to that described above is felt, if not part, with a common school education. in the same measure, certainly for the same What is moral education? It is the develop. ends, to refine the manners, furnish the minds, ment of man's moral nature, as intellectual and exalt the motives and increase the moral and in physical, are of the intellect and physical frame. tellectual powers of the young. Wedo not look Education is the harmonious development of the to any single benefactor to aid us in the attain three departments. The modern philosophy as ment of these ends. We must be our own bene to the nature of the moral faculty, is, I believe, factors, inform ourselves of what is best to be generally established. According to this, there done and feel assured that it can be done, be is a faculty of the mind, which in its healthy cause it has been done. Apathy and obstinacy state, unerringly points out the moral quality of may defeat what the laws encourage; what so. actions, supported by Abercrombie, Rush, Reid, ciety demands; what enlightened perseverance Stewart, Combe, Spurzheim, Wayland. The opmay accomplish, and in that case, sinning against posite theory is, to refer the virtue and vice of light how signal will be our calamity and how actions to reason or a process of reasoning, as to deplorable our disgrace.

the benefit or disadvantage of the act under con

sideration, supported by Paley, Hume, Hobbes, MITCHELL'S OUTLINE MAPS.

Locke. The foundation of a system of moral education must be laid upon the first theory, oth

erwise moral, is mere intellectual culture. Prof. Nassau, June 3, 1844.

Wayland says, “He that does wrong, not only Geography, is a study not inferior to any oth acts contrary to his nature, but contrary to the er pursued in our common schools, and I have highest impulse of his nature; that is, he acts as for a long time felt the necessity of some im. much in opposition to his nature, as it is possi. provement in the mode of teaching it. As taught ble for us to conceive."-Wayland's Moral Sciheretofore, very many have come short of a ence, p. 71. The true system of moral educathorough knowledge of this branch of study, tion seems to be, such an one as will exercise, owing not only to the deficiency in the plan it and consequently develop the moral nature. self, but also to the amount of time required to Physical and intellectual education are analobe devoted to it by the teacher. After a careful gous to moral. It is by the use of the respective examination of these maps, for the purpose of faculties that they are developed and strength. ascertaining whether there have been any im. ened, by disuse that they are weakened or near. provements made, not found in former works; ly destroyed. A moral text book is needed, and, also, whether a saving of time can be se which will treat of the nature of the moral faccured by their use, I have come to the conclu ulty, contain moral problems for solution, vari. sion that much benefit may be derived therefrom, ous human characters to analyze, or any other not only in these, but in many other respects. matter which will give a true idea of conscience,

But while I ieve the maps are every way or bring into use and exercise the moral faculties. well adapted to the use of our public schools, I The cultivation of man's moral nature, is an think a very important and highly useful addi- engine that can revolutionize the world. This tion could, and ought to be made to the key.' noblest part of his nature has been left unculti.

vated, weeds have choked its growth, the wind, use of his acquisitioas just as the ancient RCTI has perverted its original direction, and even its artist did, who was taught to cope with life-like 1 very existence has been questioned. Maa has precision the Grecian masier-pieces-just as does been taught from his very infancy that the com the serf of the Russian noble, at the present day, mission of wrong is alluring and pleasurable, the who is trained to execute al commerd, diffieak performance of right self-denying and not pro. pieces of music, or make iacsimiles of paintings ductive of much happiness in this world. These of the best modern Italian or Ferrish masters errors are to be dissipated, and the attractions --without the slightest advance or the operative and allurements of a course of conduct in con. or intellectual stature-or wibout one power of formity with conscience, impressed upon the producing an original conception. youthful mind. What a contrast between that How many of our ten thousand teacbers bare intellectually educated bot fiendish being in ever known that education, even a common yonder prison, and him wbom a nation's love school education, should be directed to the dae delights to call the - Father of his country!" I development, the symmetrical cultivation of the once was a district school master, and I look physical, the moral, and the intellectual fecal back upon the efforts then made to teach my ties of every child? How many bave koown the pupils viriue, as the mosi pleasurable reminis constant, careful, practical use to be made of this cence of that period.

knowledge, if possessed, in the treatment of Says the philosopher, Dr. Rush, “The ex. every child? That to educate the moral powers tent of the moral powers and habits in man, is to the exclusion or total neglect of the iniellesunknown. It is not improbable that the human tual, would be detrimental in the extreme, resmind contains principles of virtue, which have dering their subject the victim of snperstition never yet been excited into action.' • Tani the sport of passing delusion. To educate am not so sanguine as to suppose thal it is pos- the intellect to the neglect of the moral nature, sible for man to acquire so much perfection from would be to give talent and power without prio science, religion, liberty and good government, ciple-in other words, it would be to educate for as to cease to be mortal; but I am fully persua. the penitentiary, the prison cell, the scaffold of ded, that from the combined action of causes, the gallows, the grave of the suicide! which operate at once upon the reason, the mo. Again, how many are ignorant of the distinc ral faculty, the passions, the senses, the brain, tion between intellect and feeling, between idea. the nerves, the blood and the heart, it is possible and emotions—know not that ibese two classes to produce such a change in his moral character of mental operations are called into activity by as shall raise him to a resemblance with an. very different objects, cultivated by different progels.”

cesses—and that as one or the other predominates Is it the dream of an enthusiast that looks for in the mental constitution, produce very different a period in man's progression, when his maoral results both in conduct and character? powers will be so highly cultivated that no one Oh, woe for those who trampie on the miod, will need the protection of law; when in the Thai deathles thing! They know not what they do, words of Professor Potter, (at the Rochester

Nor what they deal with! Man, perchance, may tind

The flower his foot huth bruised; or light anew convention) no jail, prison or gallows shall be

The torch be quenched; or to music wind needed, to restrain mankind from the commis. Again the igre string from his couch that fiew, sion of crime?

W. B. But for the soul! oh! tremble and beware Baldvinsville,

To lay rude hands upon God's mysteries there!

In addition to the true discernment of bis daty NORMAL SCHOOLS.

as an educator, there are other requisites, with

out which, perhaps, no one should be permitted Extracts from the Report of the committee of the permit us to dwell here upon the importance of

to have the care of the young. Time will not Assembly of this state, on colleges, academies and common schools, of which the Hon. Mr. mildness, his generosity, his patience, his sense

à teacher's social and moral qualifications—his HULBURD was chairman, in regard to the dis of decorum, his kindness, his cheerfulness, bis tribution of the Literature Fund, and the esta. love of virtae, his reverence for his Maker. blishment of a Normal School.

These constitute the most precious traits, the It is a teacher's high prerogative to develop richest ornaments of childhood; and there is no the faculties of human beings. If he mistake his parent so debased as not to desire even in the calling-if he mistake the true principles of his depth of his debasement, that his child should art, to educate,' to develop—and aim merely to grow up the possessor of all these qualities! instruct,t to instil--not only the child, but the Yet how often have the very means that should man, will carry to the grave the sad effects of have implanted and cherished all these graces, this ignorance and incompetency. Such a course been neglected in the unsuitable selection of a stunts and dwarf's the whole mental and moral teacher, the constituted delegate of the parent? nature; it renders the intellect a mere passive re. How can the teacher cause his pupil to feel the cipient of words and signs, and words and signs truth and beauty of what has never touched or only, instead of ideas, it will evolve-it will be entered bis own soul ? clothed “with a vesture of apparent informa- We are sometimes almost tempted to believe tion"-but the power--the originality--the ex. that much of what has been written and sang pansion of mini-are enfeebled, constrained and about our earliest moments, is but the dreaming circumscribed. It creates the form-it construcis of a beautiful fancy; and yet who that panses the mechanism of elucation--withont breathing / amid " being's busy bustle". and thinks upon into it a living soul. It prepares the child lomake childhood-all its joys and its brief tears-its

soft purity and its brave gentleness--its charity E-duco, lend from, draw out, &c.

that thinketh no evil-its hope that believeth ar In-struo, build on or ofer, &c.

things does not fed as well as know that it is



the one green spot to which manhood often looks public school will be patronized; if only at the back, and sighs that but once only through it runs high or select school, then such school will be the thoroughfare of individual existence. How patronized at the expense of the common school, rarely too is the evening of any life so dark that As stated in another part of this report, the the dimmed eye of age, sightless though it be to normal teacher in Massachusetts is found on erial all things present, does not fix and fasten upon to be able to put a school forward much more that far off Auroral brightness? How easily are rapidly than teachers who have not had equal we thus by observeion and experience brought advantages. And must there not be something to believe that

in having trained teachers in schools to accon“Heaven lies about us in our infancy."

plish such results? How else is it that at 14 If thus pure and precious and permanent are from school with attainments far superior to

years of age the Prussian scholar is discharged the impressions of childhood, how inappreciably those our youth of 16 years possess ? important the character of the agents that pro

This large saving of time, of clothes, of duce them. The parent, the mother, is the first books, of school money, will not, does not, es natural observant of these glimpses of a higher

cape the observant eye. nature; how easily we can excuse that beautiful

Motives of public economy, besides the imsuperstition which teaches her that the smiles of perative necessity and obligation of doing some. her sleeping infant are gleams of fairy visit thing to bring the public schools up to the select ings or angel ministrations." Ir the mind were as Locke and others of that earnest set about taking the incipient steps to

and high schools, require that we should in school supposed, like a sheet of paper on which obtain a permanent supply of competent teach. night be inscribed whatever characters we pleas. ed, how immeasurably important that an intelli. The committee do not indulge an expectation gent artist should be selected who had studied that an adequate supply of well-trained teachers long and well, not only the mysteries of his art, for our schools can be furnished in a very brief but the precepts of its great masters! But far period;, this, whenever undertaken, and under different is the mind from being a passive reci. the most favorable auspices, must be the slow pient of ideas, it is rather“

a germ with distinct work of years. tendencies folded up within it.” The earliest

As already seen in a former part of this re. unfolding of this germ, the virtuous and intelli- port, the state long ago set apari a specific fund gent mother, watches and fosters

for educating the teachers of its common schools. 66 Till, folú after fold, to the fainting nir, The plan adopted to ensure such education had The soul of its beauty and love lays bare."

so failed of the object, that the Regents of the Too soon by the force of circumstances, the University last year suspended all appropriations child is removed from maternal guidance and in aid of it. There now remains in the treasufaithfulness, and placed under the care of the ry, unexpended last year, the sum of $4,800; at schoolmaster. Shall that most sensitive plant” the end of the current year, unless otherwise apo blossom with culture or droop by neglect-shall propriated, there will be an equal additional it expand in part and be blighted in part-shall sum. The wisdom and forecast of former legiait grow up with noxious excrescences, unsightly lation, having made an appropriation, the rev. distortions, or exhibit the graceful proportions enue, of which this annual sum of $4,800 constiof symmetrical beauty? Under God, these are tutes a part, to educate common school teachers questions that for answer depend almost wholly -no one, it is presumed, will have the hardihood upon the character, the qualifications of the to seek to resume for the state the use of it for teacher.

general purposes, or to divert it to any other obTaking such a child, from such a mother, an ject, however meritorious, than that of educating intelligent teacher would aim by suggestive edu teachers, nor can it reasonably be expected that cation to carry the mental and moral powers the Regents will restore it to the teachers' defrom one process of development to another. partments. The vicious child of a neglectful or immoral Having then in the treasury available means mother, would require an opposite training; con that in good faith can be appropriated in further. science would need first to be awakened, enlight. ance of but one object, the committee believe ened and invigorated-first to cultivate the in. they do no wrong to other institutions, and least tellect of such a child, would produce a knave, of all to the “ specific fund” itself, but rather if not a worse offender.

best subserve the first great object of that fund, The day is fast approaching when the intelli- in recommending that the aggregate of these gent, thoughtful parent will no loger entrust his sums, $9,600, be appropriated to establish a Norchild with a teacher who is incapable or incommal school for the education and training of teachpetent of making these discriminations. The ers forthe common schools. After the present. importance of having these germs of immortal year the annual sum of $10,000 is recommended to existence nurtured and matured by safe and skil. be appropriated from the literature fund in support ful hands, is beginning to be realized. If such of this institution. This amount will not be reare not found in the common school, resort will gardel as too large, when it is borne in mind that be bad to the high school, the select school or it is desirable that accommodations should be the academy.

made for from 150 to 200 pupils; that if suitable Aside from any moral or intellectual conside- buildings are furnished, there will be serious rations in behali of his child, the parent will be items for furniture, blackboards, apparatus, text governed-he is—by economical considerations. books: salaries of three or four assistant-teachThe teacher that cap in four months or a year, ers and one principal will require a very con. advance a school as another teacher will be able siderable amount. But after meeting all such to in eight or twenty-four months, will be sought expenses and charges, the committee indulge the after; if he is found in the public school, the hope that the appropriation will not be so far


exhaustsd that those charged with the general entrusted with the power of recommending pasuperintendence of the school will have no ineans pils; it being understood that no one would be left to make a weekly allowance towards the received until examined, or continued alter being maintenance of one class of pupils.

admitted unless commendable proficiency was It is not the result of gallantry or of that com made in the science and in the practice of leachplaisant homage which in every refined and ing. christian nation is the accorded due of the female The terms of admission, the course and dura. sex, that has given to the sex an unequivocal tion of study, the testimonies to be given on preference in teaching and controlling the young. the completion of the course, and finally all the It is not superior science, but superior skill in detail of regulations to organize and govern such the use of that science, it is the manner and the an institution, may better be left to the delibera. very weakness of the teacher that constitutes tion and sound judgment of those under whose her strength, that ensures her success. For that supervision and control the whole subject matter occupation she is endowed with peculiar facul- is placed, than an attempt be made to particuties; while man's nature is rough, stern, impa. arize them in a report, or digest them into a tient, ambitious—hers is gentle, tender, endur: legislative enactment. ing, upaspiring. One always wins, the other It will be noticed that the committee speak of sometimes repels; the one is loved, the other the establishment of one normal school; did our sometimes feared. Kindness and quickness of present means seem to warrant it, the commit. apprehension, frank sympathy with the young, tee would with confidence recommend the im. endear and attach, and when the scholar's confi. mediate establishment of at least one in each of dence and attachment are once gained, he is the eight senatorial districts; if one is now esbenceforth easily taught and governed.

tablished, and that is properly endowed and cr. In childhood the intellectual faculties are but ganized, there cannot be a doubt that not only partially developed, the affections are much more one will be called for in each of the Senate disfull; at that early age the affections are the key tricts, but in a brief period very many of the of the whole being; it must be possessed before large counties will insist upon having one estabthe understanding can be opened to the easy in. lished within their limits. The establishmento gress of knowledge. The female teacher readi. one is but an experiment—if that can be called a ly possesses herself of that key, and thus having experiment which for more than a century has access to the heart, the mind is soon reached and been in operation without a known failure operated upon; while the male teacher seeks, in which, if successful, will lead the way for sevedirect approaches to the understanding, to imral others. It is believed that several of the plant scientific truth. Here we have the solu. academies now in operation can and will be tion of the problem—of the superior success of speedily converted into normal seminaries, when female teachers with small scholars; although the period arrives for the rapid improvement of thos resolved the cause will remain while the education; in this way there will be no loss of different natures and tenperaments of the two academic investment, and the great interests of sexes remain. One of the distinctive character. the public will be as well or better subserved istics above hinted, deserves a further remark; than they are at present. that while the habits of female teachers are bet The committee believe the "experiment * ter, their morals purer, they are much more apt should be tried at the capitol; if it cannot be to be content with, and continue in the occupa. tested in the presence of all the people, it should tion of teaching. It is an employment to which, be before all the representatives of the people. as already said, they are peculiarly adapted, and As a government measure it is untried in this wherever they have attempted they have suc- state; the result therefore will be of deep inter. ceeded. In Massachusetts, where females have est.* Here at each annual session of the legisbeen most employed, they have been most ap. lature, can be seen for what and how the public preciated. In the winter and summer schools, money is expended; here can be seen the exhi. 6,715 teachers were last year employed, 4,301 of bitions of the pupils of the seminary and of the whom were females; in 1841, of 6,503 teachers, model school; here, if unsuccessful, no report of 4,112 were females; showing a gradual increase interested othícials can cover up its failure, or As already seen at the Barre and Bridgewater prevent the abandonment of the experiment; institutions, where both sexes were received, and here citizens from all parts of the state, who re. where only such were admitted as signified that sort to the capital during the session of the le. it was their intention to teach, the number of gislature, the terms of the courts, &c., can have females over males preponderated more than an opportunity of examining the working of the three to one.

normal school system, of learning the best meth. As they will be more apt to teach when edu. ods of teaching, and all the improvements in the eated, more likely to continue in the employment, science and practice of the art; those who in the ask and receive less wages than males, the com spring and autumn pass through the city and mittee believe the state should hold out some in. from the great metropolis, those who from all dacement to females, perhaps to the number of parts of the Union make their annual pilgrim. two-thirds of all the pupils admitted who have age to the fountains of health, will pause here attained the age of 16 years complete, and who to see what the Empire State is doing to promote are physically and morally and intellectually and improve the education of her people. properly constituted to become teachers, and who shall signify it to be their intention so to do

* The committee are aware that the public schools in -to spend a year or more at the normal school.

New-York owe much of their success and celebrity to The different counties shonld be entitled to

teachers trained in aurmal schools in that city; that a

school for educating teachers for some few weeks in send pupils to the school in the same proportion cach of the last two years, has been kept up in the they are represented in the Assembly; the coun.

county of Fulton. As prirate enterprises such etsorts ty superintendents associating with the first

are praiseworthv, bor i hey cannot supply the placejudge of the county) might, perhaps, safely be porceres dhe instigence or produce the effect of a centrik

« PreviousContinue »