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self, with the suggestion of suitable topics and proper methods. This report confines itself to the absorptive side of education, and ignores that development of power over nature, man, and self which comes from free exercise of faculties and free expression of thought. The study of language, as something for the child to use himself—the great means by which he is to assert his place in civilization and exert his influence for good—is nowhere referred to except in the vaguest way. This statement in regard to language applies almost equally well to drawing; and here is made evident the importance of the form of correlation to which I have just referred.
The proper material for the training of the child in expression is that which is furnished by the study of man and nature. His mind being filled with high themes, he asserts his individuality, expresses himself in regard to them, and thereby gains at once both a closer and clearer comprehension of what he has studied, and also the power by which he may become a factor in his generation.
3. I would wish to omit the word "weekly," where it occurs in the discussion of the subjects of general history and science, unless it be understood to mean that an amount of time in the school year equivalent to sixty minutes weekly be given to each of these subjects. It is often better to condense these studies into certain portions of the year, giving more time to them each week, and using them as the basis, to a certain degree, of language work. I believe, that, especially with young children, clearer concepts are produced by such connected study, pursued for fewer weeks, than by lessons seven days apart.
4. In my judgment manual training should not be limited to the seventh and eighth grades, but should begin in the kindergarten with the simple study of form from objects and the reproduction in paper of the objects presented, and should extend, in a series of carefully graded lessons, through all the grades; leaving, however, the heavier tools, such as the plane, for the seventh and eighth grades. By these means an interest is kept up in the various human industries, sympathy for all labor is created, and a certain degree of skill is developed; moreover, the interest of the pupils in their school is greatly enhanced. Manual training has often proved the magnet by which boys at the restless age have been kept in school instead of leaving for some gainful occupation.
5. I desire to suggest that geometry may be so taught as to be a better mathematical study than algebra to succeed or accompany arithmetic in the seventh and eighth grades. I do not refer particularly to inventional geometry, to which the committee accords a slighting attention; but to constructive geometry and the simplest propositions in demonstrative geometry, thus involving the comprehension of the elementary geometric forms and their more obvious relations. This study may be made of especial interest in connection with manual training and drawing, while it presents fewer difficulties to the immature mind than the abstractions of algebra, since it connects more directly with the concrete, by which its presentation may often be aided.
6. While agreeing fully with the majority of the committee that the full scientific method should not be applied to the study of elementary science by young children, yet I am compelled to favor more of experimentation and observation by the child and less of telling by the teacher than the report would seem to favor.
7. I would go further than the majority of the committee, and insist that, except in rare cases, there should be no specialization of the teaching force below the high school, and, that, even in the first years of the high school, so far as possible, specialization should be subordinated to a general care of the child's welfare and oversight of his methods of study, which are impossible when a corps of teachers give instruction, each in one subject, and see the student only during the hour of recitation.
8. While in the main I agree with the bald statements under the head “Correlation by Synthesis of Studies,” since reference is made to only a very artificial mode of synthesis not at all in vogue in this country, I must dissent emphatically from this portion of the report as by inference condemning a most important department of correlation, to which I have referred earlier. The doctrine of concentration is not necessarily artificial; rather, it refers to the higher unity, of which this committee has spoken in glowing terms as belonging to the province of higher education. It also includes the division of the school curriculum into content and form, which this committee inferentially adopts in its treatment of language. I do not believe, any more than do the majority of the committee, that the entire course of study can be literally and exactly centered about a single subject, nor do I believe in any artificial correlation; but there is a natural relation of all knowledges, which this committee admits in various places, and which is the basis of a proper synthesis of studies according to the psychological principle of apperception.
9. If, by the term “oral," as applied to lessons in biography and in natural science, the committee means, as the word would imply, that the instruction is to be given in the form of lectures by the teacher, I cannot in full agree with the committee's conclusions. As I have already stated, in natural science the work should be largely that of observation, and in history and biography, while in the very lowest grades the teachers should tell the children stories, as soon as it is possible the desired information should be obtained by the student through reading. To this end, the reading lesson in school should be properly correlated with his other studies, and he should be advised as to his home reading. The information thus obtained should be the subject of conversation in the class, and should furnish the material for much of the written language work of the children.
10. I must dissent emphatically and entirely from that portion of the report which recommends that a text-book in grammar be introduced into the fifth year of the child's school life. It is a question in my mind whether it would not be better if the text-book were not introduced into the grades below the high school at all. Certainly it should not appear before the seventh year. Such knowledge of grammar as will familiarize the child with the structure of the sentence, the basis of all language, and as will enable him to use correctly forms of speech which the necessities of expression require, should be given orally by the teacher in connection with the child's written work, when needed; but against the introduction of a textbook upon grammar, the most abstruse of all the subjects of the school curriculum, when the pupil is not more than ten years old, I must protest. Instead of that the child should devote much time, some every day, to writing upon proper themes in the best English he can command, furnishing occasion to the teacher to correct such errors as he may make and acquiring by use acquaintance with the correct forms of grammar. If, as will doubtless be the case in most cities, local conditions render the introduction of Latin into the eighth grade inadvisable, this study of grammar may be made in that grade somewhat more intensive.
11. If by a text-book in geography is meant that which is commonly understood by the term, and not simply geographical readingmatter, in my judgment, it should not be introduced earlier than the
These suggestions and expressions of dissent, if approved by the committee, would necessitate some change in the prograin submitted, the most important of which would be the making room for the production of English in the grades. This could be provided in the first and second grades by taking some of the time devoted to penmanship and doing the work partly in connection with the reading classes. In the third and fourth grades it should take some of the time devoted to penmanship, and should be studied, also, in connection with geography and reading; and, in the fifth and sixth grades, it should take all of the time given to grammar.
I regret to be compelled to express dissent upon so many points, but as most of them appear to me vital, and as the differences appear to be not merely superficial but fundamental, affecting and affected by one's entire educational creed, I cannot do otherwise. To most of the report I most gladly give my assent and approval.
CHARLES B. GILBERT, Superintendent of Schools, St. Paul, Minn,
I agree most heartily with the main features of the foregoing report of the sub-committee on correlation of studies. It is so admirable in its analysis of subjects and in its statement of comparative educational values, and so suggestive in its practical applications to teaching, that I regret to find myself appearing in any way to dissent from its conclusions. Indeed, my principal objection is, not against anything contained in the report (unless it be against a possible inference which might be drawn at one point) but it refers rather to what seems to me to be an omission.
In addition to all the forms of correlation recommended in the report, it seems to me possible to make a correlation of subjects in a program in such way that the selection of subject-matter may be to some extent from all fields of knowledge. These selections should be such as are related to one another so as to be mutually helpful in acquisition. They should be the main features of knowledge in the different departments.
These different departments from which the chosen subjects should be taken must be fundamental ones and must be sufficiently numerous to represent universal culture. The report itself indicates conclusively what these are.
Reference is made in the report to various attempts that have been made to correlate subjects of study.
A very just criticism is made upon that attempt at correlation by the use of the story of "Robinson Crusoe” as a center of correlation. It is distinctly pointed out in the report, that the experiences of Robinson Crusoe are lacking in many of the elements of universal culture and in many elements of education needed to adjust the individual properly to the civilization of our time and country. It is equally evident that the attempt to make this story the center of correlation leads directly to trivial exercises in other subjects in order to make them "correlate” with "Robinson Crusoe.” It is also shown in the report that it naturally leads to fragmentary knowledge of many subjects very much inferior to that clear, logically-connected knowledge of a subject which may be had by pursuing it without reference to correlating it with all others.
It is at this point, that, in my judgment, a wrong inference is permitted by the report.
It does not, as it seems to me, follow, that, because correlation based on “Robinson Crusoe" is a failure, all correlations having the same general purpose will necessarily prove failures. For my own part, I do not believe that correlation needs any “center,” outside the child and its natural activities. If, however, it seems wiser to give special prominence to any given field of acquisition, it should, in my judgment, be accorded to language and its closely related subjects
reading, spelling, writing, composing, study of literature, etc. Indeed, language as a mode of expression is organically related to thinking in all fields of knowledge, as form is related to content. A "system" " or "program" of correlation on this basis would seek for fundamental ideas in all the leading branches and make them themes of thought and occasions of language exercises. The selections would omit all trivialities in all subjects, and would not attempt to correlate for the mere sake of correlation; but would seek to correlate wherever, by such correlation, kindred themes may be made to illuminate one another. To illustrate: Concrete problems in arithmetic would be sought that would clearly develop and illustrate mathematical ideas and their application; but, in a secondary way, these problems would be sought for in the various departments of concrete knowledgegeography, history, physics, chemistry, astronomy, meteorology, political, industrial, or domestic economy. But none of these themes would be so relied upon for problems as to compel one to choose unreasonable or trivial relations on which to base them. The problems themselves should represent true and important facts and relations of the other subjects as surely and rigidly as they should involve correct mathematical principles; and all such exercises should be rightly related to the child's education in language.
In like manner, when a child is engaged in nature study of any kind, some valuable problems in mathematics may be found rightly related both to the subject directly in hand and the child's natural progress in arithmetic. Also, many of the lessons in nature study are directly related to some of the finest literature ever produced, in which analogies of nature are made the means of expression for the finest and most delicate of the human experiences. When the child has mastered the physical facts on which the literary inspiration is based is the true time to give him the advantage of the study of such literature. These ideas are not only rightly related to one another but the mind itself. It is, so to speak, the nascent moment when the mind can easily and fully master what might else remain an impene. trable mystery; and all because subjects and occasion have come into happy conjunction.
This is not the place in which to attempt any elaboration of such a system of correlation; but I feel that its absence from the report may make many persons feel that the latter is so far incomplete.
L. H. JONES, Superintendent of Schools, Cleveland, Ohio.