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SCHOOLS AND COLLEGES A SHORT HISTORY OF ENGLAND'S LITERATURE

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PROSE AND POETRY OF CARDINAL NEWMAN

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THE first of the burning educational I take it, is the goal of American educa

questions of the day is What does tion. education for efficiency mean? It does not During the last quarter of a century a mean that every man should be trained to

great movement for the reform of the e!r. be a soldier. It does not mean merely that mentary curriculum has been gathecing each citizen should be able to read the news- strength. The most prominent characterpapers and magazines so that he may be istics of tiis movement would seem to familiar with political discussions and able have been live development of the imagito make an intelligent choice between can- nation and the higher emotions through didates and policies.

literature and art and music; the trainStill less does it mean that wretched ing of the body and the executive powers travesty of education which would confine of the mind through physical training, the work of the public schools to those ex- play, and manual training; and the introercises in reading, writing, and ciphering duction of the child to the sources of mawhich will enable a boy or a girl at the age terial wealth, through the direct study of of fourteen or earlier to earn starvation nature and of processes of manufacture. wages in a store or factory. Education for At first the movement seems to have been efficiency means all of these things, but it founded on psychological basis. To-day means much more. It means the develop- the tendency is to seek a sociological ment of each citizen first as an individual, foundtaion-to adjust the child to his enand second as a member of society. It vironment of man and of nature. means bodies kept fit for service by approfriate exercise. It means that each student

DEFENSE OF "FADS" shall be taught to use his hands deftly, to At various times during the past ten or observe accurately, to reason justly, to ex- fifteen years, and particularly during the press himself clearly. It means that he

past year, reactionary voices have becii shall learn "to live cleanly, happily, and loudly raised against the New Education, helpfully with those around him ;" that he and in favor of the old. Such was to be shall learn to cooperate with his fellows for expected. Reactions follow inevitably in far-reaching and far-distant ends; that he the wake of every reform, political and shall learn the everlasting truth of the social. Analysis will show that the reacwords uttered nearly two thousand years tionary tendencies in education arise from ago, “No man liveth to himself,” and three chief sources: "Bear ye one another's wurdens.” Such, 1. The demagogic contentions of selfish

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politicians who see that it costs more ers were prepared to teach them; for too money to teach the new subjects of the long they were concerned chiefly with uncurriculum than the old, and that thus a interesting formal processes rather than large proportion of the public revenue is with interesting results: that they were diverted from the field of political spoils. not related to real needs of school and These are the men who have invented the home, and were not properly co-ordinated term “fads and frills.” It must be theirs with other phases of the curriculum. to learn that it will require something Much yet remains to be done to assimilate more than a stupid alliteration to stem the the environment of the school to the entide of those irresistible forces that are vironment of the world. making the modern school the faithful counterpart of the modern world and an SCHOOLS DOING BETTER WORK NOW adequate preparation for its activities. And yet, while we may feel disconThe saving common sense of the common tented with the situation, and regret the people, when deliberately appealed to, will increased difficulties of our work, there is always come to the rescue of the schools. no reason for discouragement. I have no

2. The reactionary tendency is due in hesitation in saying that in general intellipart to an extremely conservative element gence, in all-around efficiency, in power of that still exists among the teaching force. initiative, the pupils whom I see are supeAccustomed to mass work both in learning rior to those of a quarter of a century ago. and in teaching, they regret the introduc- And yet, the teachers of America are tion into the schoolroom of arts which de- still far from satisfied with their achievemand attention to individual pupils. ments. They are dissatisfied with the

3 The reactionary tendency has its elementary curriculum because it seems roots even among the more progressive crowded by the new studies that have teachers in a vague feeling of disappoint- been added without diminishing the numment and regret that manual training, cor- ber of the old. They are dissatisfied with relation, and nature study have probably the high school curriculum because the not accomplished all that their enthusiastic old-style language, mathematics, and sciadvocates promised ten to twenty years ence course, however suitable it may be ago.

for admission to college, does not preciseThe feeling of disappointment, we might ly meet the needs of boys and girls who say even of discontent, among the more are going directly into life. They are disthoughtful and progressive teachers is satisfied with the specialized high school what might have been anticipated. In the because it seems lacking in some of those first place, public education has become a attributes of culture in which the old-time much more difficult thing than it was half school was strong. And they are dissata century ago. It has become more diffi- isfied with the college course because the cult because of the constantly increasing elective system which has taken the place migration of population from the country of the old, prescribed course, does not seem to the cities, and because of the enormous to give a strong, intellectual fibre to the increase in immigration from abroad, and weaker students who, too often, follow the particularly because the character of the path of least resistance.

And they are immigration has changed.

dissatisfied because there is less intelliIn the second place, the feeling of dis- gence, less efficiency, and less helpfulness appointment with the results of the newer in the world than the world needs. So far studies arises from the fact that these from feeling concerned at this widespread studies were introduced before the teach- discontent, we should rejoice that it exists.

none

There is nothing so blighting to educa- said, in which the soul can most truly tional enthusiasm as smug satisfaction and wholesomely develop essential reliwith what is or what has been ; there is gion. nothing so stimulating to educational

AGRICULTURE effort as a realizing sense of present im- Again, take the teaching of agriculperfections and of higher possibilities. ture. While our soil seemed inexhaust

As to the curriculum of the higher ible in fertility as in extent, the need of schools and colleges, the problem is really such teaching was not felt. Now, hownot what studies shall be inserted and

ever, we are obliged to have recourse to what omitted, but how shall we make it

lands that produce only under irrigation. possible for the student to get that cul- The rural schools have added to our diffiture, efficiency, and power out of his

culties by teaching their pupils only what studies which his development requires.

seemed most necessary for success when

they should move to the city. The farms CHILD'S NEEDS SHOULD BE GUIDE of New England are, in large measure, deAs to the elementary curriculum, surely serted or are passing into alien hands. we shall not go far wrong if we apply To retain the country boy on the land to each study and even to each detail of and to keep our soil from exhaustion, it each study these four questions:

is high time that all our rural schools 1. Is this study or this exercise weil turned their attention, as some of them within the comprehension of the child? have done, to scientific agriculture. There

2. Does it help to adjust him to the is no study of greater importance. There material and spiritual environment of the is

more entertaining.

If every age and the community in which he lives? country boy could become, according to his

3. Does it combine with the other ability, a Burbank, increasing the yield of studies of the curriculum to render him the fruit tree, the grain field, and the more efficient in conquering nature and cotton plantation, producing food and in getting along with his fellows, and thus clothing where before there was only to realize ideals that transcend environ- waste, what riches would be added to our ment?

country, what happiness would be infused 4. Does it accomplish these objects into life? To obtain one plant that will better than any other study that might be metamorphose the field or the garden, ten selected for these purposes?

thousand plants must be grown and desIf these questions are answered in the troyed. To find one Burbank, ten thousaffirmative, we may reasonably conclude and boys must be trained, but unlike the that the study or the exercise in question plants, all the boys will have been beneis an important element in education for fited. The gain to the nation would be inefficiency. Examined from the viewpoint calculable. Scientific agriculture, practiestablished by these questions, every study cally taught, is as necessary for the rural will assume an aspect very different from school, as is, manual training for the city that which it bears when taught without school. a well-defined object. Take drawing, for It is not in secondary schools alone, example. Drawing may be so taught as however, that efficiency demands highly not only to lay bare to seeing eyes new differentiated types of schools. It is abworlds of beauty, but to lead to that rev- surd to place the boy or girl, ten or erent appreciation of nature and the re- twelve years of age, just landed from application of her lessons to daily indus- Italy, who cannot read a word in his own trial art which is the way, as Ruskin has language or speak a word of English, in

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