UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA
REVISED AND ENLARGED
GEO. W. NEET,
PROFESSOR OF PEDAGOGY IN THE
M. E. BOGARTE, PUBLISHER,
BY QEO. W. NEET.
It is fully appreciated that there are many books
written during the present times for which there not
only is no demand, but for which there is no excuse-
The present little volume is not born of any desire to
produce a book on pedagogy better than any yet writ-
ten. It is, however, prompted by a desire to choose
from the field of pedagogical science material well
adapted to a special class of students, with which the
writer has to deal in his daily teaching.
The field of pedagogy is so large that material
must be selected from it for those students who are
just beginning the study of pedagogy. So it has been
the aim in this little volume to select from this broad
field and organize such material as is best adapted to
students beginning this line of work. At the same
time material has been selected whose study, it is
believed, will be of substantial worth to teachers in
giving them an insight into the nature of the teach-
er's profession as well as knowledge valuable for
guidance in teaching. While simplicity has been
aimed at as much as possible, no effort has been
made to avoid the most fundamental problems of
IV STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
This book is prepared for the special purpose of
use as a text-book in my own classes. Much which
is the result of the most recent investigations along
pedagogical lines is here arranged in a teachable and
convenient form. Thus the study is brought up to
An effort has been made to show where the pres-
ent studies articulate with psychology, child-study
and methods. G. W. N.
I. The School 13.
II. The Purpose of the School 25.
III. The Physical Nature of the Child - 38.
IV. The Mental Nature of the Child 63.
V. The Mental Nature of the Child 84.
VI. The School Curriculum - 122.
VII. The Teacher - 148.
VIII. The Management of the School - 176
IX. The Process in the Teaching Act,
X. The Recitation - - 231.
Index ... - 245.
Pedagogy. This term is sometimes thought to
name some particular school subject, the study of
which will enable those who wish to teach school to>
do their work better than they could do it without
such study. It is thought by some who have not
been special students of it to name a subject as
definite, with regard to the truth it teaches, as-
grammar, geometry, or physiology. Such, however,
is a wrong notion of the meaning of the term, peda-
gogy, as well as a wrong idea of the nature of the
subject, pedagogy. Pedagogy is a term which names
a group of subjects that have to do with both the
science and art of education, and is not correctly to>
be thought as naming any one particular subject.
The term, pedagogy, is from the Latin term, peed-
agogus, which means a boy-leader or a child-leader.
Thus from its literal meaning pedagogy should be
something which has to do with leading children from
a condition in which their unpreparedness for living
is the greatest to one in which they live intensive and
fruitful lives. And this is the correct use of the term,
for it indicates the nature of the subject. Used iix
this sense pedagogy names a group of subjects which
are called professional subjects. That is to say, they
are subjects which the teacher should study with the
special view of becoming more skillful in the art of
teaching. Pedagogy thus embraces the group of
professional subjects, psychology, child-study, or paid-
ology, methods, history of education, and philosophy of
Guyau, a French educational writer of note de-
fines pedagogy as follows: * 'Pedagogy might be
defined as the art of adapting new generations to
those conditions of life which are the most intensive
and fruitful for the individual and the species."
This definition emphasizes the art side of pedagogy,
but it also has an important science aspect.
It thus appears that two views of pedagogy may
be found in the minds of teachers, as follows:
1. The view that pedagogy is a definite subject,
such as history, etc. This view is not the correct
2. The view that pedagogy is a group of sub-
jects the professional subjects for the teacher.
Paraphrasing Guyau 's definition and adding a
little to it, we have the following definition for peda-
gogy: Pedagogy is the science and the art of adapting
new generations to those conditions of life most intensive
and fruitful to tlie individual and the race.
It will thus appear that the field of study in
pedagogy which offers itself to teachers is a broad
one, and one from which material especially suited
must be chosen. It further appears that to become
to any great extent proficient in the pursuit of peda-
gogy will require considerable time. Educational
ideas have grown till it is no longer believed that one
can become proficient in pedagogy by studying it for
one or two school terms. This becomes evident
when one thinks that to know pedagogy to any great
extent is to know psychology, child-study, methodol-
ogy, history of education, and philosophy of educa-
The Beginning Point. Prom the teacher's point
of view all study of pedagogy centers around and is
connected with the school. The term, pedagogy, is
so closely connected with the school, and they have
been associated together to such an extent that this
term always suggests the school in some of its
various aspects. For this reason pedagogy has
come to be regarded a strictly professional line of
work, and a more or less extended study of it is the
teacher's distinctly prof essional preparation. So, as
a starting place in the study of pedagogy, it seems
eminently fitting to begin with the study of the
school as a whole, since it is the institution in which
the learner and the teacher meet in the educating
Tlie Nature of the School. Among the ancients
the school was a place of leisure, but it can scarcely
be called such now. In its development it has be-
come one of the fundamental organizations of society.
The school is thus an organization, but it gives little
or no help to know this unless the idea of an organi-
zation is well understood.
14 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
The study of the human body as a type of an
organization will reveal pretty well the thought
sought for here. A somewhat careful study will
show that the following points are to be found in the
human body as an example of an organization:
1. A complex whole.
2. Individual parts.
3. The harmonious working relation of the
4. A common purpose for which all the parts
5. Self -activity and self -adjustment of the
whole and the parts.
The body as one thing is a complex whole, since
it may be analyzed into parts some of which are of
more importance than others. The individual parts
in this case are the organs of the body the hands,
the feet, the skin, the heart, the stomach, etc. They
are individual parts because each one has some
marks about it which distinguish it from everything
else. All these organs work so as to help onean-
other. Thus the hands help to care for the feet; the
feet help to carry the hands from place to place;
the feet and hands help to secure food to nourish the
skin, heart, and stomach as well as themselves; the
stomach helps to digest the food, and the heart pumps
the blood enriched by the digested food to all parts of
the body. All these parts do their work in such a
way that, while each one does its own particular
THE SCHOOL. 15
work well, it in no way hinders any other part but
also facilitates its work. If any part should work
against another for a time, the organization would be-
come impaired; if continued, the organization would
be destroyed by breaking down the unity of its parts.
The common end for which all the parts here work is
the maintenance of the body as a whole, which is also
the maintenance of the life of each part. The human
body is self-adjusting in that, when out of order, it
tends to adjust itself, and in most cases actually does
so. It is self-active in that it has the power of
originating its own activities of causing itself to
act. The analysis of the human body as an example
of an organization reveals the essential ideas of any
organization as we wish in our work to think it.
Then, when we say the school is an organization,
we say it is a collection of individual parts, self-ad-
justing and self-acting, working harmoniously to-
gether for one common purpose. Thus the pupils,
the teacher, the school curriculum, the school
officers, the patrons, etc., are the individual parts; and
the common purpose toward which they are harmo-
niously working is the education of the learner
physically, intellectually, aesthetically, socially, morally,
The school, the church, the family, the state, and
business society are organizations which are called the
institutions of civilized life. These five institutions
are the lines along which civilization has grown.
16 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
A further study of the institution, the school,
leads into a discussion of the origin of the institu-
tions, and particularly the origin of the school.
Origin of the School. The school had its origin in
the differentiation of institutions. But this statement
gives no help unless the meaning of differentiation is
well understood. Differentiation has been called the
law of all progress. That is to say, progress con-
sists in the division of structure or of labor or of
both, and when there is no differentiation of these
there is no progress.
Differentiation may be defined as a differencing,
or division, of structure or labor to the end of more
Illustration. The lowest forms of life are small
animals and plants each consisting of but one small
cell of protoplasm which does in a way the work that
all the organs of higher living forms do for them.
Thus this one cell performs all the functions of di-
gestion, circulation, assimilation, muscular action,
etc., that are performed by the organs of higher
forms of life. In these little living beings there is
almost no differentiation of structure or function.
But a little higher form of plant or animal life has
many cells, some rudimentary digestive organs,
and circulatory organs; and also rudimentary
nervous, muscular, and supporting systems. The
higher up in the scale of plant or animal life the
being is, the more definite are the separate organs,
THE SCHOOL. 17
and the more is their labor divided. For instance
the robin or the geranium each has a definite set of
organs for the performance of a definite set of
functions. That is to say, they have a high degree
of differentiation, while the one celled forms have
none or nearly none. This means progress; for when
an organ has but one kind of work to do, it can do
that better than it can do many kinds of work. This
is true because there is more time and energy to be
spent upon this particular work.
Differentiation of Institutions. There was a time
in primitive society during the childhood of the race
when only one of these fundamental institutions of
civilization was in existence. This institution was
the family. It then had much work to do. It had to
protect the children from enemies, both wild beasts
and men, to furnish food, clothing and shelter. It
had to educate the children in so far as they were
educated; to furnish religious services, and provide
means of enjoyment for leisure hours. With these
manifold duties to perform the family could not be
expected to do any of them very well, and we know
that they were not well done. The protection fur-
nished was poor; the food, clothing, and shelter were
poor; the religion was crude and frequently degrad-
ing; the right education of the children could not be
given, and the pleasures were gross and debasing.
It could be no other way under such conditions.
That there was first a felt -need for the organi-
18 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
zation, the church, after the family may seem strange,
but history shows it is the truth. And when there is
a strong felt-need for any thing, the thing is thus
produced which will satisfy the need. Thus the
second institution of society which came into exist-
ence was the church as a product differentiated from
the family. To say that the church had its origin in
the thought that it as an institution could furnish
gratification for man's religious impulses better than
the family could is a true statement. If such had
not been the case, the church would have had no
reason for coming into existence.
The next institution to differentiate was doubt-
less the school. It grew out of the thought that it as
an institution could educate the children better than
could be done by the family or the church, or by
both. So the school had its origin in the thought that
it as an institution could do the work of educating the
children better than any other institution in existence.
This is the thought that created it, and it is the
sole purpose of the school to realize this thought; for
it is the function of everything to realize the idea that
created it, and the school accords to this law.
Illustration. It may be truly said that the idea
which created the cotton-gin was the idea of some
machine to separate the fiber of the cotton from the
seed. And it is the purpose, or function, of the cot-
ton-gin to realize this idea; that is, to do the work of
separating the fiber of the cotton from the seed.
THE SCHOOL. 19
This we know it does well, and its doing this well is
what has kept the cotton-gin in existence.
The origin of the state, and business life may be
accounted for in the same way as the origin of the
school; that is, they arose in the process of differ-
entiation of the institutions. It is, however, our
purpose here to study the origin of the school only.
Differentiation in the School. The first school was,
doubtless, a very simple and primitive affair. It
probably consisted of a few students congregated
under the shade of some friendly tree to receive in-
struction from one who occupied the place of
teacher. Within the memory of men now living the
school was very simple. The house was a log cabin
containing almost no furniture; the curriculum was
reading, writing, spelling, and arithmetic. The
country school was Primary school, High school,
Academy, Normal school, Technical school, College,
and University. But from this simple beginning by
differentiation our schools have become quite complex
and elaborate. There has been differentiation at any
rate along four lines as follows:
1. In the school as a whole.
2. In the work of the teacher.
3. In the curriculum.
4. In the grading.
Once there was nothing but the primary schools,
but now there are Primary schools, High schools,
Technical schools, Colleges, and Universities, each
20 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
with its own special work to do. Once a teacher
taught everything in the school course, but now in
many places there is a special teacher for each sub-
ject. The curriculum once consisting of only reading,
writing, spelling, and arithmetic is now changed by
differentiation to one consisting of the following
groups: 1. The language group. 2. The science
group. 3. The history group. 4. The mathe-
matical group. 5. The art group. Now the curriculum
is quite complex and extensive. And lastly differen-
tiation has brought about grading in our schools.
The teacher in the first schools taught all grades,
while the tendency is now towards but one or two
grades for a teacher.
This differentiation in all lines of school work
means progress. It means a saving of time and
energy. Division of labor, or differentiation, in the
school means progress just as truly as it means
progress in any kind of life.
Illustration. Suppose the farmer, in addition to
producing products of the farm, had to make his own
machinery, grind his wheat and corn for flour and
meal, tan the skins and make his boots and shoes,
do his own carpenter work, saw his lumber, produce
cotton, wool, and flax, weave them into cloth for cloth-
ing, be his own doctor, dentist, lawyer, teacher, and
preacher, none of these lines of work could be so well
done as they now are when this labor is divided
up among many persons. Time and energy would
THE SCHOOL. 21
be lacking the farmer to do so many kinds of work
well. Also, there is not only more energy to put on
any one kind of work when labor is differentiated,
but any one doing just one or two lines of work be-
comes more skillful than he could become when doing
many lines of work, and, thus, will do his work much
The origin of the school thus being seen in the
study of the differentiation of institutions, the next
topic to invite study is the elements of the school.
The Elements of the School. It has been seen that
the school is a complex whole; that is a whole made
up of many parts, or elements, some of which are of
less importance than others. These elements may
be divided into two classes, and these classes may
appropriately be called:
1. The necessary elements.
2. The supplementary elements.
The necessary elements are those without which
the school can not exist. The school is wholly for the
learner, and without the learner there can be no school.
So the learner is the first and most important of the
necessary elements of the school. The learner
makes necessary a teacher. While a school can not
exist without the learner, no more can it exist with-
out the teacher. The school finds the thought that
created it in the process of fulfillment in the teaching
act, but to have the teaching act requires a teacher.
So the teacher is the second one of the necessary
22 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
elements of the school. While the life of the learner
is the thing to be developed always in teaching, it
cannot be developed without some subject or sub-
jects for it to exercise upon. So a third element, the
subjects of the school course, is also an absolute
necessity. The term used to designate the school
subjects, reading, writing, spelling, geography,
history, etc., taken as a whole, is the school curricu-
lum. With these three elements, the learner, the
teacher, and the curriculum, a school may exist, but
take away any one or more of them and the school can
Every school possesses other elements, which con-
tribute to the efficiency of the work the school has to
do, but which are not absolutely necessary to the
existence of the school. These are the elements
which have been called the supplementary elements of
the school. They are the school officials, the parents,
and the material equipments. The school officers are
the directors, trustees, members of the school
boards, superintendents of county, city, and state,
the commissioner of education, and, in a sense, the
legislators, governors, and the president of the
country. The material equipments are school houses,
school furniture, laboratories, library, apparatus, and
Both of these classes of elements may exist, how-
ever, and there still be no school. In order that
there may be a school these elements, whether
THE SCHOOL. 23
necessary or supplementary, few or many, must be
organized, that is they must work in harmony with the
law of the organization. This law is the law of unity.
In order to understand this truth well, two words,
law and unity, need special study.
Law. A law is a truth which is true of a large
number of particular cases. Thus it is a law that
plants require sunshine, moisture, and air for their
growth. This is a truth which is true of a large
number of particular plants, and these plants are the
particular cases. Again it is a law that all material
objects are drawn toward the center of -the earth.
This is a truth which is true of all material objects,
and these objects are the particular cases.
Unity. Unity as used here means oneness in
thought, purpose, and effort. It means harmony in
work and means. It is the harmonious working rela-
tion in the organization. Thus there is unity between
the student and the teacher when they are both
working with the same thought in mind to accomplish
the same end by the use of harmonious means.
There is unity between parent and teacher when they
are agreed as to the end to be attained in school work,
and are also agreed on the means and are working to
reach the desired end.
The law of unity is the fundamental law of the
school. This appears from the fact that when all
the elements of the school are examined at the time
at which the school is doing its best work, it is found
24 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
that it is when there is most unity; also, it is found
that when the school is doing its poorest work, is
when there is least unity. With the law of unity
intact the school moves forward without a jar toward
the accomplishment of its work the education of the
pupil. When the law is broken there always results
discord and friction. Any one connected with the
school, the teacher, the parent, the school officers, or
the student may break the law of the school the law
of unity. When any one does so, he breaks a rule
of the school, since the rules of the school are but
different aspects of the law of unity. And he who
breaks the law of unity in the school either intention-
ally or unintentionally has committed an educational
Further Material for Study. After studying the
school as an institution of civilization, there remain
to be studied the purpose, or aim, of the school; the
necessary elements of the school; school management,
the recitation, etc. These will be studied in succeed-
The purpose of the school is one with the end, or
aim, of education; so a study of this leads to a study
of the nature and purpose of education.
The nature and purpose of education will constitute
the subject-matter of study in the next chapter.
THE PURPOSE OF THE SCHOOL.
The Problem. The purpose of the school is to
educate the pupil. But what does it mean to educate
the pupil? What sort of condition is the pupil to be
in when he is educated? What is the meaning of
what is called an education? These are some of the
questions which suggest themselves at the outset of
the study. The real problem is, What is the purpose
of the school? and, since the purpose of the school is
the same as the purpose of education, the problem
is, What is the end to be reached in the educating
process? That is to say, the question to be answered
is, What is the aim, or purpose, of education?
The Problem Answered. There is scarcely an
educational writer of note to be found who has not
dealt with this problem and who has not answered
it in some way. This fact, that educators every-
where have been thinking and writing upon this
question, is evidence of the importance which school
men think it to possess.
It will prove helpful to study some of the
answers to this very important question.
Complete Living. Mr. Herbert Spencer, doubt-
less the greatest living thinker, says the purpose of
26 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
education is complete living. This when analyzed
1. Treating the body right.
2. Treating the mind right.
3. Managing one's affairs right.
4. Rearing a family right.
5. Behaving right as a citizen.
6. Spending one's leisure time right.
This seems a broad and comprehensive view of
the purpose of education. There is no kind of hu-
man activity that this view of the aim of education
does not touch. Granting that this is the true aim
of education, then instruction in our schools, if in
harmony with this aim, must give the pupil knowl-
edge which will furnish guidance in these six kinds
of activities. There must be knowledge gained
which will furnish guidance in treating the body right;
in treating the mind right; in managing one's affairs
right; in rearing a family right; in behaving right as a
citizen; in spending one's leisure time right.
The schools in their present condition fall far
short of realizing this comprehensive aim. There is
scarcely anything in many of our school courses that
has as its specific aim to furnish knowledge which
gives guidance in treating the mind right. The
school curriculum is also almost entirely devoid of
work which gives knowledge to furnish guidance in
rearing a family. Doubtless much in the average
school course has such a remote connection with
THE PURPOSE OF THE SCHOOL. 27
knowledge that gives guidance in any of these six lines
of human activities indicated, that the time spent upon
it could be spent much more profitably some other
way. That is to say, in the light of the above indi-
cated purpose, the school curriculum is inadequate to
a high degree. This point will be studied at length,
however, in Chapter VI. under the head of The
Rational Freedom. Dr. Arnold Tompkins says
that the aim of education is rational freedom. And
by rational freedom is meant the power to choose and
live in the highest good. This means the power to
choose and do that which will in every instance lift
one to a higher plane of life as opposed to doing as
one pleases regardless of the effect it has upon his
own life and the lives of his fellowmen. Some fancy
their freedom taken away from them when they are
prohibited from doing those things which by degrees
bring upon them habits constantly degrading to
their lives. In such cases it is not rational freedom
that is taken away; in fact, it is not freedom at all,
but the opportunity of placing themselves in bondage
w r hich is restricted.
Illustration. A man claims freedom gives him
the right to partake of intoxicants to the extent that
he becomes drunken. He objects, if one says the
law against drunkenness should be enforced, and
says his freedom is restricted. It seems evident
that the restriction is not upon his freedom, but that
28 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
the license to make a slave of himself is the thing
upon which the restriction falls. If he were free, he
would know the evil of intemperance, he would choose
to be temperate, and would have the force of character
to realize his choice.
Thus, since rational freedom means the power to
choose and live in the highest good, it means the
same thing as complete living.
Strong Moral Character. Dr. Charles A. McMurry
discusses the question, What is the main aim of
education? in his work on "General Method," and
comes to the conclusion that it is strong moral char-
acter. Some have objected to strong moral character
as the main aim of education on the ground that it
slights the value of knowledge in education. The ob-
jection, however, does not seem to be a good one. In
order to have strong moral character one must have
knowledge sufficient to enable him to know to a high
degree the right and wrong in human activity. One
is not likely as a rule to do better than he knows. He
may do so, however, by accident, but to be able to act
right, presupposes the development of the thinking
and knowing powers to the extent that judgments of
right and wrong may be formed. So to say that
strong moral character is the main aim of education
does not mean that knowledge getting and the ability
to think are to be slighted at all. On the other hand,
it does mean that one must possess a store of useful
knowledge and the power of ready, accurate thought,
THE PURPOSE OP THE SCHOOL. 29
but it further means that this power must be regu-
lated and directed to righteous ends.
To say that a man always has good motives is not
equivalent to saying that a man has a strong moral
character. The Fijian considers murder an action of
the highest honor, and feels that his life has been
more or less a failure till he has killed some one.
Although some would say the act of killing on
the part of the Fijian is a moral act because the motive
is good to the Fijian, none probably, would say the
act is the result of strong moral character. Similarly,
the Turcoman regards theft as meritorious, as shown
by the fact that he makes pilgrimages to the tombs
of noted robbers to make offerings to their departed
spirits. In the same manner the Egyptian thinks it
praiseworthy to lie without any further object than
that he may become skillful in the art of lying. Ac-
cording to a class of thinkers on moral questions these
acts, murder, theft, and lying, are moral acts since the
agent performs them with what he considers a good
motive. However, the common sense of any school
boy tells him that these acts do not grow out of strong
A person to have strong moral character must
be a good thinker; a lover of truth, beauty, and goodness;
and must have well formed habits to the end of acting
truthfully, beautifully, and righteously.
Wise and Virtuous Men and Women. Another way
of stating the purpose of education which means
30 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
substantially the same as the purpose stated
above is to say the purpose of education is to make
wise and virtuous men and loomen. Wisdom consists
in knowing what is the best thing to be done next
under any set of circumstances, and virtue consists in
doing it. Thus a man or woman is wise just to the
degree that he or she knows what is best to do next,
and virtuous just to the degree that he or she does it.
Harmony of tlie Four Views. Complete living,
rational freedom, strong moral character, and wisdom
and virtue as the purpose of education all mean in
substance the same thing. Each one emphasizes
the truth that it is the function of education to
make worthy, honorable men and women of unsullied
integrity and virtue.
Importance of the Right View. Purpose is begin-
ning and end in every kind of process. Purpose as
mere idea is the beginning, and it moves forward
guiding the process to its realization, the end. Thus
it determines the end .reached and the character of
the process in reaching the end. It also determines
the means used in carrying on the process.
Illustration. A man wishes to beautify his
lawn, the purpose, which exists only as an idea. But
it is the beginning of the process of making the
lawn beautiful. He sets out shrubbery, makes flower
beds and plants flowers, plans walks orderly ar-
ranged, and constructs a fountain in some suitable
place. All this constitutes the process, which the
THE PURPOSE OF THE SCHOOL. 31
purpose guides. In the light of the purpose
the work must be neatly, orderly, and artistically
done, or the beauty will be marred. The purpose
also determines the kind of shrubbery, flowers,
walks, and fountain selected; that is, the means. All
this work well done, the lawn is beautiful, which is
the realization of the purpose. Thus the purpose
was beginning as idea, and end as its realization.
From the foregoing the importance of having the
right purpose of education fixed in the mind of each
student and teacher may be seen. It will determine:
1. The chararacter of the educational process.
2. The means used in the educational process.
3. The end reached by the educational process.
Of all the educational questions which enlist the
intellect and appeal to the interests of the people, no
other is more important than this; no other is more
vital and determining in its effects; no other is more
far-reaching in its influence. Upon the appreciation
of its importance, its correct solution, the faith in it,
and the force of it in the form of living
principles in the lives of students and teachers de-
pend not only the success and happiness of individ-
uals, but even the perpetuity of national life.
Man's Aim in Life. In general it may be said
that man aims at two things in life:
1. "Animal happiness. "
2. ' 'Spiritual worthiness."
Animal happiness means a condition in life
32 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
resulting from the satisfying of one's physical needs.
It means the possession of the material things of life
to the extent that one may have an adequate supply
of food, clothing, and shelter for himself and family.
It is somewhat relative, meaning different things to
different people, but in all cases it refers to the
possession of money, property, etc., to the end of
bodily comfort. It is the practical set over against
culture; the physical set over against the spiritual.
Spiritual worthiness means all that has been
discussed under moral character, rational freedom,
wisdom and virtue, and complete living from the
Relation of These Aims. These aims are both
worthy ones, but which one holds the dominant place
in the consciousness and affections of an individual
makes a mighty difference in his life. It will change
the whole current of his character and actions. If
one subordinates spiritual worthiness to animal
happiness, he subordinates the higher to the lower,
the animal-like to the human-like, and will be
governed more in his actions by the animal-like than
by the human -like. Thus the proper relation of
these aims is that spiritual worthiness must always
occupy the leading place in consciousness and affec-
tions, and if there ever be conflict between them, an-
imal happiness must be subordinated to spiritual
worthiness. One may attain to both by aiming at
THE PURPOSE OF THE SCHOOL. 33
the higher, but he is not likely to attain to both, if he
allows his life to be dominated by the lower.
What the Main Aim of Education Is Not. The
predominant aim of education then is not animal
happiness, if it were man would be no better than
the lower animals in so far as his aim in life is
concerned. There is, nevertheless a strong and'
wide-spread belief that the purpose of education is
primarily to furnish a means for obtaining a liveli-
hood. Evidence of this is found in the ideas of a
majority of the students who first enter the work in
our universities, normal schools, and colleges. It is
probably not an exaggeration to say that nine-tenths
of the students entering these schools hold in mind
as their predominant aim the money- making purpose.
Further evidence of this is found in the ideas that
parents generally have in sending their children to
school. It is common for parents to say, in reply to
the question, Why are you sending your children
to school? something like the following: "I want my
child to be educated that he may not have so hard a
time in life as I have had. "
What the Primary Aim of Education Is. The
primary aim of education is strong moral character.
In our civilization there is a need for strong moral
character above all other things. There can be no
doubt of a need for a better manhood and woman-
hood among the masses of our people, when the
following sad truths are so evident:
34 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
1. Ignorance, vice, and poverty go hand in hand
with human misery.
2. There is scarcely a court in the land in which
one can feel absolutely sure of justice.
3. No attempt is made to conceal the fact that
to corrupt the right of suffrage is regarded as fair
4. So many men in the common affairs of life
will not deal honestly with one another.
5. Legislators are susceptible to the influence
of lobbyists and bribery.
6. Men have not the moral courage to crush
out of existence the curse of intemperance, which fills
the jails, penitentiaries, and alms houses, and causes
the premature death of eighty thousand citizens
yearly in our country, which causes the loss of
fortunes, and makes homes desolate.
One can assert without fear of exaggeration that
the most pressing need of the nation, and humanity
is a better type of moral manhood and woman-
hood. John G. Holland's u Prayer of the Nation" is
as true now as it ever was. He says:
"God give us men! A time like this demands
Strong minds, great hearts, true faith and ready hands,
Men whom the lust of office does not kill;
Men whom the spoils of office can not buy.
Men who possess opinions and a will;
Men who have honor and will not lie;
Men who can stand before a demagogue
And scorn his treacherous flattery without winking,
THE PURPOSE OF THE SCHOOL. 35
Tall men, sun-crowned, who live above the fog
In public duty and private thinking. ' '
Hints from Nature. Education as a process is
living rather than mere preparation for living, and
human life will of necessity in the process of educa-
tion conform with the unfolding of life wherever
found. Then when the universal law of the unfolding
life process has been found out, the real purpose of
education has been discovered. This is always an
upward striving to accomplish the end prompted by
inherent self-urgency. Thus the acorn develops into
the very best oak tree possible under the circum-
stances, true to the self-urgency inherently in it.
The grain of corn grows into the mature stalk and
ear, also true to the self-urgency in it. Everything
in nature has an upward tendency because of the
self -urgency in it.
The poet idealizes it thus:
"Every clod feels a stir of might,
An instinct within it that reaches and towers,
And groping blindly above it for light,
Climbs to a soul in grass and flowers."
The animal world feels this self -urgency, content
to accomplish the work nature has given it to do.
The larva develops in to the beautiful butterfly, true to
this principle. Within the egg is potentially the
songster of woodland and field, and its life consists
in making the potential that to which its self -urgency
36 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
Tennyson idealizes it thus :
"To-day I saw a dragon-fly
Come from the wells where he did lie.
An inner impulse rent the veil
Of his old husk: from head to tail
Came out clear plates of sapphire mail.
He dried his wings: like gauze they grew:
Thro' crofts and pastures wet with dew
A living flash of light he flew. "
The human being comes into the world the most
in bondage to his limitations of all animals. His
most evident characteristic is his unpreparedness for
life, his inability to take care of himself. But no one
can tell what he will become; that is, his potential
freedom is greater than any one knows. It is confi-
dently believed that, while he is actually in bondage
in almost every way, he is potentially absolutely free.
Education as a process is the growth from what the
individual is to what freedom is in him potentially, and
to which his self -urgency points him. And the purpose
of education from the hint given by nature is to make
of each individual the best man or woman he is
capable of becoming; that is, one who has the physic-
al, intellectual, sosthetic, social, moral, and religious
aspects of his life harmoniously developed to the
end of scrupulous honesty and integrity, strong
moral character, and whatever else makes the even
current of life run full and strong.
THE PURPOSE OF THE SCHOOL. 37
The poet Holmes puts the idealized purpose of
education thus :
"Build thee more stately mansions, O my soul,
As the swift seasons roll!
Leave thy low-vaulted past!
Let each new temple, nobler than the last,
Shut thee from heaven with a dome more vast,
Till thou at length art free,
Leaving thine outgrown shell by life's unresting sea."
By way of emphasis it may be said that, if a man
is dishonest, untruthful, or immoral in any way, he
is not educated, though he be a Spencer in thinking
ability, and possesses a profound knowledge of all
the arts and sciences known to man.
It has been seen that the necessary elements of
the school are the learner, the teacher, and the school
The learner presents himself to us for study as
to (1) his physical nature, and (2) his spiritual nature.
Our study in the next chapter will deal with the
physical nature of the learner.
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OF THE CHILD.
Importance of Its Study. Few people are to be
found who have reached middle or later life and who
are not afflicted with some sort of disease which
more or less all the time is a handicap to them in
their pursuit of success and happiness. Together
with catarrh, rheumatism,, etc., more than ninety
men and women in a hundred are thus afflicted. In
fact, it is extremely difficult to find a person who is
habitually perfectly well. This fact, that so few men
and women are to be found who in middle or later
life are thoroughly well is evidence of the need of a
better understanding of the laws of life by parents,
teachers, and all other persons. This knowledge is
needed by each one that he may guard his own health
and the health of those intrusted to his care.
The Misfortune of Bad Health. No greater mis-
fortune can come to cne than to be afflicted with bad
health. This truth is evident from the following
1. Bad health causes natural pain, weariness,
gloom, and the loss of time, and money.
2. It hinders the performance of all duties,
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 39
often makes business impossible, and always makes
it much more difficult.
3. It produces an irritability fatal to the right
management of children, makes one's duties in the
social institutions impossible, and the spending of
one's leisure time a misery.
"To all of which add the fact, that life, besides
being thus immensely deteriorated, is also cut short.
It is not true, as we commonly suppose, that a dis-
order or a disease from which we have recovered
leaves us as before. No disturbance of the normal
course of the functions can pass away and leave
things exactly as they were. In all cases a per-
manent damage is done, not immediately appre-
ciable, it may be, but still there; and along with other
such items which Nature in her strict account keep-
ing never drops; will tell against us to the inevitable
shortening of our days. Through the accumulation
of small injuries it is that constitutions are commonly
undermined, and break down long before their time.
And if we call to mind how far the average duration
of life falls below the possible duration, we see how
immense is the loss. "When to the numerous partial
deductions which bad health entails, we add this
great final deduction, it results that ordinarily more
than one-half of life is thrown away. "
Three potent factors which have to do with the
health of all persons and with the health of children
in particular are/ood, clothing, and shelter.
40 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
Food. It is well known that there is a thought
current in the minds of some people to the effect that
the child should not be allowed to eat animal food.
It is thought by many people that a strictly vegetable
diet is the one most suitable for children; they have
joined in with this belief without thinking very much
whether it is true or not, or if true, why it is true.
Some believe this so strongly that they will permit
their children to have little or no meat to eat, while
many who eat meat themselves and permit their
children to do so still believe it would be better for
all parties concerned, if they would not eat it.
When such questions as this come up to be
solved, the solution can be found by applying the
truths of modern science to it, in so far as it can be
solved at all. Accordingly the thing for the parent
and teacher to find out is what the truths of modern
science show when applied to this question. Then,
let us study this question in the light of the truths
of modern science.
Three reasons are given in support of the theory
that children should live on an exclusively vegetable
1. It is claimed that the health of the child is
better promoted by a vegetable dietary.
2. It is claimed that the child whose dietary is
vegetable has a better disposition than the one whose
food is mixed.
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 41
3. And lastly it is claimed that it is wrong ta
kill animals for food.
Let us study each of these points. The main-
tenance of the health of the child demands food for
three things: 1. To make up for the waste of the
body. 2. To supply fuel to keep up the temperature
of the body. 3. To furnish material for building up
new tissue for growth. These three demands may
be met in three ways: 1. By small quantities of
concentrated food. 2. By moderate quantities
of moderately rich food. 3. By large quantities of
dilute food. Small quantities of concentrated food
are not desirable, because it is a well known fact that,
an effort to supply the needs of the body by too con-
centrated food leads to disease of the digestive
Large quantities of dilute food are undesirable^
because too great a task is imposed upon the digestive
organs to promote their health, and the system re-
quires an economy of digestion that energy may not
be drawn away from other work of the body to the
work of digestion unduly.
As a rule vegetable food is too dilute to supply
the needs of the body unless it is taken in too large:
quantities for the best results to the digestive organs.
One of two things is likely to result: 1. There may
be an abnormal development in size of the digestive
organs. 2. Or there may result disease of the di-
gestive organs by overwork.
42 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
Thus for the purpose of keeping the digestive
organs healthy by giving them enough work to do
and yet not overworking them a diet of mixed veg-
etable and animal food seems the best.
The body demands three kinds of organic foods:
proteids, sugars, and /ate. The proteids are muscular
tissue builders and must be supplied the body to
enable it to maintain its strength. Meats and milk
are rich in proteids, but vegetables are not rich in
these. On the other hand few of them contain any
considerable quantities of proteids. Thus since the
body must have proteids, it seems the most natural
way to supply them with animal food.
Our teeth indicate that the natural food of the
human race is one mixed of vegetables and meats.
And lastly our first food is animal food.
From the above it is seen that the verdict of
science is that under natural conditions a dietary
mixed of vegetable food and animal food is the natural
one and the best one for children in order to promote
In regard to the assertion that animal food gives
children bad dispositions, it is perfectly true to say
that this assertion has never been proven. It is a
mere assertion without proof. On the other hand
good feeding and good dispositions go together
throughout the whole animal world. The Esquimau
and the Laplander are not distinguished for their bad
dispositions, but for just the opposite characteristics.
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OP THE CHILD. 43
They are both easy-going sort of fellows that can not
easily be provoked into a fight, yet they and their
ancestors for ages have lived almost wholly on meat.
With respect to the third reason urged, it may
be truly said that it is difficult to see why it is wrong
to kill animals for food any more than it is to kill
plants, or any more than it is to kill them when they
The mass of scientific evidence seems to be
entirely against a strictly vegetable diet for children
and in favor of a mixed one.
Clothing. There are some ideas in regard to
clothing more or less generally held which are the
source of evil and human misery. These ideas are
1. It is held that children's health may be better
preserved by dressing them in clothing insufficient
in quantity and quality and thus hardening them.
2. Fashion is given the precedence of comfort
in children's clothing.
The child needs clothing for three things: 1. To
protect him from cold. 2. To protect him from
heat. 3. To protect him from substances which
might otherwise injure him.
In the process of hardening children the first
purpose of clothing is violated in that the child is not
protected from cold. "The common notion about
'hardening' children is a grievous delusion. Chil-
dren are not infrequently 'hardened' out of the world;
44 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
and those who survive, permanently suffer either in
growth or constitution. " The reason for this is that
a constant quantity of heat is necessary to the health
and growth of the body. If this quantity of heat is
lessened for any considerable time because of a lack
of clothing or because of exposure, one of two things
1. The health will be impaired. 2. Or merely
retarded, or stunted, growth will result. If the con-
stitution is not strong enough to bear the loss of heat,
the result will be sickness, disease, and premature
death. However, if the constitution be sturdy enough
to bear the loss of heat, no further injury may result
than stunted growth.
"This truth is displayed alike in animals and
man. The Shetland pony bears greater inclemencies
than the horses of the south, but is dwarfed. High-
land sheep and cattle, living in a colder climate, are
stunted in comparison with English breeds. In both
the arctic and the ant-arctic regions the human race
falls much below its ordinary height: the Laplander
and Esquimau are very short; and the Terra del Fue-
gians, who go naked in a cold latitude, are described
by Darwin as so stunted and hideous, that one can
hardly make one's self believe that they are fellow-
The only safe rule is, children must wear clottes
sufficient in quantity and quality to protect the body
from any abiding sensation of cold, however /
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 45
Children are also frequently required to wear
clothing which makes them uncomfortable in order
to conform to fashion; also, clothing made of such
unsubstantial material that their freedom of play and
activity is restricted that the clothing may not be
soiled or torn. This freedom of activity is very
necessary to the child's growth and development.
From the standpoint of the child's welfare, the
following rules should be strictly adhered to in
1. While clothing should not be in excess, it should
always be sufficient in quantity and quality to pre-
vent any abiding feeling of cold.
2. It should be made of non-conductive material,
and strong enough to stand the wear and tear of childish
sports with little damage, and of color well adapted to
use and exposure.
The Pedagogy of Food and Clothing. But what is
the pedagogical bearing of food and clothing? Two
thoughts here suggest themselves:
1. Excellent opportunities often present them-
selves for bringing these facts, that the child's
welfare demands that he have plenty of wholesome,
nutritious food, and plenty of clothing of the right
quality, before parents and people in general. There
is opportunity in this respect for great improvement
in the conditions which affect the education of
children, and it is the duty of each teacher to do
what he can to improve these conditions. The teacher
46 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
must understand and be impressed with the im-
portance of improvement of these conditions to do
effectively his part toward bettering them.
2. The teacher who understands the relation of
food and clothing to the child's life will not expect the
same quality or quantity of work from the poorly fed
and poorly clad child that he will expect from his more
fortunate companions. Not all children can be
treated alike in teaching. The teaching must con-
form to the needs of the child, and the needs of no
two children are the same. The knowledge of food
and clothing in their relation to the education of the
child will give the teacher more charity and more
sympathy in teaching those children who are poorly
fed and poorly clad. And the charity and sympathy of
the teacher for his children is of the highest importance
ScJioolroom Conditions. There are several points
concerning the condition of the schoolroom which are
properly to be discussed in pedagogy work; and be-
cause of their relation to the child's physical nature,
it, from one viewpoint, is proper to discuss them
here. These points are: 1. Ventilation. 2. Tem-
perature. 3. Lighting. 4. Seating. 5. Cleanliness.
Ventilation. The general well-being of the body
depends upon the quantity and quality of the blood.
If the blood be not properly aerated, the whole body
suffers at once from the effects of the blood upon it.
There is drowsiness, stupor, fatigue, headache, and a
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OP THE CHILD. 47
general ill-feeling and the lack of vivacity. These
conditions continued lead to bad colds, catarrh,
neuralgia, pneumonia, tuberculosis of the lungs and
death. From the standpoint of the child's physical
welfare, proper ventilation is of the highest impor-
tance. It is not an uncommon thing to find seventy-
five per cent, of the students in a schoolroom suffering
with colds at one time, the teacher oftentimes
attributing this condition of things to circumstances
over which he has no control when it often happens
that he is largely to blame for it in neglecting proper
ventilation. The child's success in life will depend
to such a large extent upon his physical excellence
that it becomes of the highest importance to the
teacher to do his part in giving him a sound body.
The Difficulty of Proper Ventilation. Proper
ventilation in ninty-nine school houses in a hundred
is an absolute impossibility. Each person in a mixed
audience should have not less than 3000 cubic feet of
fresh air per hour; or to say it in another way, each
person should be provided with from 40 to 50 cubic feet
of air per minute, and this should be distributed with-
out producing draughts. These conditions simply
can not be provided in most schoolrooms.
A system of ventilation called the plenum system
will provide these conditions. According to this
"the fresh air is forced into the schoolroom by
means of a fan, and the foul air is pushed out through
any openings in the rooms, and passes away through
48 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
a stack. The air in the rooms in such a system as
this is under constant pressure. All spaces are
filled with air and all leakage is toward the outside.
Thus the entrance of contaminated air from any
outside source is absolutely prevented. "
The plenum system is the best system because
the air in the room is under constant pressure toward
the outside, thus pushing the bad air out all the
lime and preventing any bad air from coming in from
But not many of our schoolrooms have an engine
to drive the fan, and most school officers think they
cannot afford such expensive ventilating apparatus.
Important Points on Ventilation. Our plan of
study does not permit a detailed discussion of the
technique of ventilation, though it is a profitable
study for the teacher.
There are two things which must be efficiently
provided for in a properly ventilated schoolroom :
1. All parts of the room must be furnished with
an adequate amount of fresh air at all times.
2. The air must be got into the room in such a
way that the pupils and teacher may not be exposed
to draughts at any time. Draughts are the source
of colds, sore throat, earache, neuralgia, catarrh,
The two following points also need emphasis:
1. Air may be cold and at the same time be impure
and unfit to breathe.
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OP THE CHILD. 49
2. It is an important duty of every teacher to
acquaint himself with the technique of ventilation
in order that he may do as much as possible toward
ventilating properly both his schoolroom and his
That air may be cold and at the same time be
impure is a truth that janitors as a rule seem entirely
incapable of getting into their heads. Nearly every
one has had the exasperating experience of sitting 1
at some public gathering suffering intensely from
cold and bad air at the same time. That the ther-
mometer in the room shows the temperature to be
68 is no guarantee of the purity of th air in the
Temperature. No schoolroom is conducive to
health, which is either too warm or too cold. If it is
too cold, it will bring on a sensation of chilliness that
is not only extremely uncomfortable, but dangerous
to the health. All the evils which result from clothing"
deficient in quantity and quality may likewise result
from sitting, working, and living in an atmosphere of
too low temperature. Colds, sore throat, neuralgia,
earache, catarrh, pneumonia, tuberculosis, rheuma-
tism, stunted constitution, and arrested physical
growth, and even death may be traced to this source
in many cases.
The results are almost as bad if the schoolroom
is constantly kept too warm. Two undesirable
things grow out of constantly keeping the schoolroom
50 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
too warm, as follows:
1. The enervating effect a too high temperature
produces upon one's life. There is nothing which
more quickly takes the energy, vivacity, and vitality
out of students and teacher than a school atmosphere
habitually kept too warm.
2. The diseases which result from leaving a
room too warm and going out into the open air. The
sudden change of temperature brought about in this
way is a constant source of pulmonary troubles.
A temperature of 70 Fahrenheit is, all things
considered, the temperature which should as nearly
as possible be maintained in the schoolroom. Any
variation from this of more than two degrees should
be avoided; for if the temperature be more than 72
some one will be suffering with heat; if it be below
68, some one will be too cold.
Every schoolroom should be provided with a
thermometer, if not by the school board, by the
teacher, in order that approximately the proper
temperature may be maintained. A good ther-
mometer with a scale from 40 below zero to 240
above mounted on a metal frame costs only 25 cts.,
and should be owned by every teacher as an aid in
his school work.
It is worthy of note in this connection that
temperament, clothing, and food of children have a
direct bearing upon the question of temperature that
no really earnest, sympathetic teacher will ignore.
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 51
Some children are comfortable in an atmosphere at
68, some at 70, and others at 72. Some are clothed
too warmly, some about right, and some are too
scantily clothed. Again some have an abundance of
food of good quality, while others have food deficient
both in quantity and quality. No teacher can afford
to overlook these various conditions, and no sympa-
thetic, loving teacher will want to do so.
Lighting. The facilities for lighting our school
houses are as a rule very bad. They are very much
worse than people generally suppose, so bad that
a school house is hardly to be found well enough,
lighted to prevent diseases of the eyes from being-
contracted where students habitually study in them.
Light insufficient in quantity is admitted to the room,
and what is admitted comes into the room in such a.
way that it hurts the eyes. In fact nine hundred and
ninety-nine school rooms in a thousand do not con-
form in their facilities for lighting to the truths
which modern science teaches on this subject.
The defects in facilities for lighting our school
houses are so universal that some diseases of the eyes
caused thereby have come to be known as school
diseases. Myopia (short-sightedness) and Asthenopia
(weakness of the eyes) are the most prevalent of
Recent studies show that our school houses have
been and are veritable factories for producing
myopia. Large numbers of school children have
52 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
been studied in Germany, France, Sweeden, Russia,
and America for the purpose of getting helpful infor-
mation on the subject of myopia among school
children. Dr. Hermann Cohn examined the eyes of
10,060 school children and found myopia gradually
increasing from 1.4 per cent, in the village schools
to 26.2 per cent, in the gymnasia. Those children
who had been in the village schools six months or
less showed no myopia.
Dr. Motias examined in France the eyes of 6,680
students with similar results; he found that in some
colleges the percentage of myopic students was as
high as 80.
Dr. Dowling examined the eyes of 1,000 school
children in Cincinnati and found that a little more
than 30 per cent, of them were short-sighted. All
the cases examined showed a gradual increase of
myopia from the first grade on through the schools
Causes of Myopia. It is generally agreed among
school authorities that the causes of myopia among
school children are as follows:
L Too little light in the schoolroom, which re-
quires habitually holding the work too close to the
2. Too much written work in the lower grades
in the preparation and reciting of the lessons.
3. Too long periods of eye work.
4. The reading of books printed with too small
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 53
type on glistening paper and with the lines crowded
too closely together; that is, poorly leaded.
5. Bad seats which cause stooping postures
favorable to congestion of the eyes.
The question, What is to be the test of the proper
amount of light in the schoolroom? is pertinent.
Authorities are quite generally agreed that, when
there are no outside obstructions to keep the light a-
way from the windows, there will be enough light in.
the room if the windowpane surface is one-fourth of
the floor surface; that is to say, there should be 1
square foot of windowpane surface to every 4 square
feet of floor surface.
Undesw -ability of Myopia. Myopia is a disease-
It is undesirable and is to be carefully avoided for the
following reasons :
1. It is disagreeable, painful oftentimes, and
2. It is unnatural and places the one afflicted at
a disadvantage in life in the struggle for success and
3. It is so closely connected with the nervous
system that it tends to bring on other nervous
Rules for Prevention. Schoolrooms should never
be more than 33 feet in length and 24 feet in width.
There should be an abundance of windows so ar-
ranged as to admit the light from the left and the
54 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
rear of the students. Blackboards should be at the
front and at the right.
Dr. A. G. Young, secretary of the State Board of
Health in Maine, and an eminent authority on school
hygiene, gives the following rules for the prevention
of myopia in school:
1. The schoolroom should have an abundance of
light in every part. The principal source of light
should be at the pupil's left.
2. The periods of eye work should not be too
3. A large part of the instruction should be
communicated orally during school hours, and the
eyestraining and timerobbing preparation of written
lessons should be reduced to the lowest possible
4. The school work to be done at home should
be limited to a very small amount, and in the younger
classes to none.
5. The desks and seats should be of the proper
pattern and size, otherwise stooping or other postures
favoring congestion of the eye and production of
myopia will be assumed by the pupil.
6. The demand for written work should be
7. The type of all school books and other books
for children should bo large and distinct.
8. Blackboards should be of a dead black, not
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OF THE, CHILD. 55
glossy. They should be placed where they will be
If these rules be well observed, other school
diseases of the eye, as well as myopia, will be reduced
to the minimum.
Seating. This subject will be studied from a
different viewpoint in the chapter on The Management
of the School so will receive but brief study here.
From the standpoint of the child's health, the
proper seating of a room is much more important
than usually appreciated.
Eulenberg studied 1000 cases of spinal curvature
and found that 95.8 per cent, of this 1000 cases
originated between the ages of four and twenty, and
that 92 per cent, originated between the ages of five
Posterior curvature, "round shoulders," and
lateral curvature are to be avoided as great mis-
fortunes. Besides detracting much from one's
personal appearance, they impede respiration and
Then seats and desks should be of proper size
and pattern for the following reasons :
1. That spinal curvatures and other physical
deformities may be guarded against.
2. That postures favoring congestion of the eyes
may be guarded against.
The demand for proper seats in the schoolroom.
56 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
will sooner or later bring the adjustable seats and
desks into common use.
"Adjustable desks are among the important im-
provements of school furniture. There are several
forms on the market, and the main objection to all of
them is the price, making it almost an impossibility
to supply whole schoolrooms with them. From the
hygienic standpoint, each child should have his desk
adjusted to himself; but where this is impossible, it
has been found of advantage to have two rows of
desks and seats, usually the outer ones, adjustable.
Extreme cases can thus be accommodated. "
Cleanliness. It is a maxim that * 'cleanliness is
next to godliness. ' ' A better statement of the fact is,
cleanliness is godliness.
Every school house should be kept scrupulously
neat and clean. No paper, bread crumbs, chalk,
nutshells, etc., should be allowed upon the floor.
The abominable habit that some students and even
teachers have of expectorating upon the school house
floor should not under any circumstances be toler-
ated. It should be regarded a criminal offense.
"The reason for this care is that dust and dirt in
a schoolroom is a serious sanitary evil. Dust itself
is an irritant to the eyes and the air passages. Dust
is known to be a bearer of disease germs. Tubercu-
losis is certainly transmitted thus, and it is very
probable that many other infectious diseases are
spread in the same way. An infectious inflammation
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 57"
of the eyes is sometimes very prevalent in schools*
and it is believed that the germs of this disease are
spread by means of the dust in schoolrooms as well
as in other ways."
This dust evil could be much reduced, if all
school houses had hard wood floors well painted, oir
even soft wood floors well filled and painted. It was
not long since popular to oil the floors of school
houses, but two good coats of floor paint have been
made to answer all the purposes of oiled floors and
found not to have their objectionable features.
The school house should be swept daily at the
close of the afternoon session after all the students
have left the room. The windows should be throwifc
wide open, and the floor sprinkled with damp saw-
dust before sweeping.
The teacher who is thoroughly in earnest with
respect to cleanliness will not be afraid to take the*
broom and duster and set things to rights, even
though the janitor does slight his work somewhat.
As a rule one can tell a great deal about the quality of
the teacher by the condition of his schoolroom.
Tlie Senses and the Sense Organs. A sense is ih&
mental power to get sensations. Thus sight is the
mental power to get sensations of light; smell, the
mental power to get sensations of odor, and so on.
The sense organs are those organs which bring
stimulus in such connection with the nervous system
as to urge the mind to action. There are two general
58 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
classes of senses : 1. General, or organic. 2. Special.
Authorities recognize seven special senses, as follows
in the order of importance: 1. Sight. 2. Hearing.
3. Touch. 4. Smell. 5. Taste. 6. Temperature.
7. Muscular sense.
The general, or organic, sense is that sense which
gives us a knowledge of the general well-being or ill-
being of our bodies and has no special sense organ.
Pain, hunger, thirst, and fatigue are sensations got
through the general sense.
The special senses are those senses which give
us a knowledge mainly of objects around us and have
special sense organs.
The sense organs are of the highest importance
to one throughout his whole life. Through them the
child first awakens to conscious life. Without the
sense organs the mind would never grow. It would
remain nothing more than a bundle of undeveloped
capacities. Without the sense organs all intellectual
growth as well as all the pleasures of living would be
Since the sense organs are of the highest im-
portance in education, the maintenance of their health
and their growth become from a pedagogical point of
view one of the most practical questions with which
the teacher has to deal. All of the special sense
organs are subject to diseased conditions which may
^demand constant attention, but in this brief study
space is lacking for the consideration of more than
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 59
two. Of special importance to the teacher are the
following: 1. The sense organ of hearing. 2. The
sense organ of sight.
Hearing. Diseases of the ear almost always pro-
duce partial or entire deafness. And too few people
fully realize what a sad misfortune partial or entire
deafness is, and how many people are more or less
"Authorities estimate that from fifty to sixty
per cent, of the children are more or less defective in
hearing. It is also claimed that by judicious treat-
ment the percentage can be reduced to fifteen or
' 'There are too many partially deaf people in every
community. Every such one is badly handicapped in
his business and social relations. How many men
lose good positions because of defective hearing!
How many sad and fatal accidents are due to the
same cause! The new education can do no better
service to oncoming generations than to preserve and
perfect this sense in children."
Children have been accused of dullness , stupidity,
sullenness, and obstinacy when the only difficulty was
they could not hear what was going on in their school
work. In order to avoid misunderstanding his chil-
dren, every teacher should test, the hearing of his
children; also, that he may do something towards
seating them so as to favor the unfortunate ones.
A teacher can not depend upon the students to in-
60 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
form him of any defects of hearing for two reasons:
first, students themselves are often not aware of the
defects; secondly, people generally are very sensitive
concerning any physical defects they may have, and
do not desire to call attention to them.
The following is an easy and practical schoolroom
test: "The pupil is placed at one end of the school-
room with his back turned toward the teacher, who
dictates in a clear, but not loud voice, while the stu-
dent writes. The teacher should begin by standing
at the farther end of the room. If, at that distance,
the pupil has any difficulty in hearing, the teacher
gradually approaches until the pupil understands
perfectly, which will be shown by his writing the
dictated matter perfectly and without hesitation.
According to the distance at which the scholar hears
readily, he is ranked and placed in the schoolroom.
If, for instance, he hears at a distance of fifteen feet
only, he is placed within that distance from the
Seeing. Myopia has already been discussed as a
school disease. Few persons, teachers included, are
aware of the number of cases of headache, and other
nervous diseases caused by myopic eyes. Astigma-
tism, resulting from irregularity of curvature of the
lenses of the eye, is a disease which is frequent
among students, and causes many nervous headaches.
"There seems to be no remedy for these defects
save in glasses properly fitted. It is quite common
THE PHYSICAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 61
and is a prolific source of headache. Thousands of
cases of chronic headache have been promptly cured
by the use of glasses."
"A ministerial friend tells me that a teacher
forced his son, who was afflicted with myopia to hold
his book at the regulation distance, and in the regu-
lation position as he read or studied, and that the
headache resulting threw him into such nervous dis-
orders that at least once a fortnight he was obliged
to keep him out of school for three or four days. A
lady friend tells me that her little daughter had been
coming home every day for months with a bad head-
ache, and that she was losing all interest in school,
when the writer visited the city and urged the
teachers to test the sight and hearing of their pupils.
This girl was found defective in eyesight and given a
front seat. In two weeks her headache was all gone,
and her interest in school had returned."
A large number of similar cases might be given,
but these will suffice.
It is the duty of every teacher to test the eye-
sight of his children. Every teacher can procure a
set of Snellin's test cards of almost any jeweler or
optician for ten cents, and can learn to use them cor-
rectly in tests in five minutes. They are as good test
cards as can be secured. Having found the defectives,
the teacher's duty is to inform the parents or guard-
ians and do what may be done by seating the stu-
dents so far as possible so as to favor the defective
62 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
ones. Any earnest, sympathetic teacher will be
willing to do so much for his pupils.
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD.
An Attribute. An attempt to study anything to
the end of knowing it well always consists in seeking
out the attributes of that thing, and an object is well
known only when many of its attributes have been
discovered and learned. Thus all learning consists-
in grasping with the mind the attributes of things.
If one sees all the attributes of any object, he knows
all there is to know about that object. Then to know
all the attributes there are in the universe to
know means entire freedom of the knowing power >
An attribute is perhaps indefinable, but the fol-
lowing statement will characterize it: An attribute
is any mark of an object which helps the mind in knowing
Classes of Attributes. There are some attributes
belonging to objects which enable the mind to know
an object from everything else in the universe. Such
an attribute is called a particular attribute. There
are again some attributes which belong to every
object in a class. Such attributes are called common
attributes. Of the common attributes some belong
64 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
alike to each object of a class of objects, but do not
extend beyond the class. These are class common
attributes. Also of the common attributes some
belong alike to each object of a class of objects, and
extend to things beyond, thus connecting the class
out with other things in the universe. These are
universal common attributes. From the above the
classes of attributes are particular, and common-, and
the classes of the common are class common, and
The definitions for these are as follows:
A particular attribute is an attribute which dis-
tinguishes its object from all other objects.
A common attribute is an attribute which belongs
to each object of a class of objects.
A class common attribute is a common attribute
does not extend beyond the class of objects to
which it belongs.
A universal common attribute is a common attri-
bute ivhich connects a class of objects with other objects in
Illustrations. If one knows a table well, he
knows its use, form, color, material, length, height,
width, weight, and decorations; also, the form,
length, width, height, use, color, material, make,
condition and decoration of the parts; also, how the
parts are connected with the table as a whole and
with oneanother. But all these are the attributes
of the table. So to know the table is to know its
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 65
The table, no doubt, has marks not possessed by
anything else. These are the particular attributes.
The use is a common attribute and is also a
class common, since it belongs to all the class, tables,
and to nothing else. Possessing weight is a univer-
sal common attribute, since it belongs to other
things than tables.
Attributes of Mind. The first step in studying
the spiritual, or mental, nature of the child is the
study of the attributes of the mind. Some might
think it would consist of the study of the substance
of which the mind is made, but this can not be done.
There is absolutely no way to study what the mind
is made of, but its attributes can be studied. The
following are important common, or general, attri-
butes of mind:
Consciousness. If you are asked a question, you
either know the answer to it or you do not do so, and
you further know that you know the answer or do
not know it. That is to say, you know the condition,
of your own mind. It is because of the attribute of
consciousness that the mind is able to do this. Thus
through consciousness the mind knows itself, and is
66 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
thus both the knower and the thing known. If with-
out provocation some one should strike you in the
face, you know, without any difficulty, your state of
mind toward that person. If the question, How do
you know your own mental states? were asked you,
you could answer correctly only by saying, / know
them through consciousness. One gets some idea of
consciousness, if he compares his state of mind
when he is sound asleep with his state of mind when
he is awake. In the first state he is more or less un-
conscious while in the second state consciousness is
Consciousness is considered indefinable by some
psychologists, but it surely can be defined as nearly
as many other things which are considered definable.
The following is the definition for it:
Consciousness is that attribute of mind by virtue of
which the mind knows its own conditions and activities.
Function of Consciousness. Consciousness is the
most fundamental attribute of the mind. Without
consciousness the mind, as we know it, could not
exist. Consciousness has the following three func-
1. It enables us to know one mental experience
2. It enables us to know the value of mental
experiences to ourselves.
3. It enables us to direct our mental activities
to the accomplishment of mental work.
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 67
Attention. The mind is constantly having ex-
periences. Mental life, and physical life, too, are a
succession of experiences. An experience is a change
of any kind, and a mental experience is then a mental
change of any kind. Thus mental life is a succession
of mental changes.
Most of our mental experiences are carried on
without the mind's being fully conscious of them, but
the mind has the ability of bringing any experience
fully into consciousness and focusing its energy upon
it. It is able to do this through the attribute of
From the study so far it may be seen that there
are two steps in the process of attending:
1. The bringing of some experience fully into
2. The focusing of the mind's energy upon it.
At first thought it seems that the mind's energy
is focused upon something outside of the mind, but a
careful study shows that the mind's energy is always
focused upon some mental experience.
From the above study the definition of attention
is as follows:
Attention is that attribute of the mind by virtue of
which the mind brings some experience fully into con-
sciousness and focuses its energy upon it.
Illustration. One is sitting in his room studying
his lesson in arithmetic. The clock is sitting on the
mantel shelf ticking away as loudly as usual, but he
68 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
does not hear it clearly, though he has a sort of dim
consciousness of its ticking. Suppose some one says,
"How loudly the clock ticks!" Immediately he hears
it plainly. That is to say, the mind brings fully into
consciousness the experience corresponding to the
ticking of the clock and focuses its energy upon it.
The focusing element in attending is analogous to the
action of a lens in focusing the rays of light.
Classes of Attention. On the basis of the effort
involved there are two classes of attention: 1. Non-
voluntary. 2. Voluntary. If the mind gives atten-
tion to a thing because it is so attractive that there is
no seeming effort, the attention is non-voluntary. If
on the other hand an appreciable effort is required in
order to give attention, the attention is of the vol-
untary kind. The following are the definitions:
Non- voluntary attention is that kind of attention
in which no appreciable effort is involved.
Voluntary attention is that kind of attention in
which an appreciable effort is involved.
Interest. Interest is the basis of attention; that
is, the mind must be interested in a thing to pay
attention to it. The following is a definition for
Interest is any feeling for an object which the mind
regards as the cause of the feeling. If an object is so
attractive in itself as to hold the mind's interest, the
interest is said to be direct; if, however, the interest
is not in the thing itself, but in something else to
THE MENTAL NATUKE OP THE CHILD. 69
which the thing is a means, the interest is indirect.
Thus one sometimes studies a subject not because he
is interested in the subject but because he thinks
he needs it. Thus the classes of interest are:
1. Direct. 2. Indirect.
Direct interest is that kind of interest in which no
appreciable effort is involved.
Indirect interest is that kind of interest in which
an appreciable effort is involved.
Apperception. All learning is the mind 's process
of getting meaning. But this statement does not
give much help unless we see what meaning is, and
what has the meaning. It seems at first thought
that objects in the outside world possess the mean-
ing, but a closer study shows that this is not the
case. The mind in learning a thing gets meaning
from it just to the extent to which it can connect its
past experiences with the present experiences and
grasp the likeness and difference between them.
And from the above it is seen that meaning is the
relation between present and past mental experiences and
is in the mind.
It is because of the attribute of apperception
that the mind is enabled to connect the past mental
experience with the present in knowing, willing and
feeling. But this is not all apperception enables the
mind to do. Apperception enables the mind to
change itself permanently with each experience.
Certainly every experience the mind has leaves a
70 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
permanent effect upon it. The mind never is again
after an experience just what it was before the ex-
perience. Psychologists say experiences are organ-
ized into the mind, but it seems easier to say exper-
iences leave their effects upon the mind.
From the above study it is seen that there are
two parts to apperceiving:
1. Bringing past experiences to bear upon the
2. Organizing the present experiences into the
By making a synthesis of these points the follow-
ing definition for apperception is reached:
Apperception is that attribute of mind by virtue of
which it brings its past experience to bear upon the pres-
ent experience in getting its meaning, and by virtue of
which tlie present experience is organized into the mind.
The last part of apperceiving may very appro-
priately be called mental assimilation.
Illustrations. If one who knows nothing of geol-
ogy were walking down a valley and should find a
rock almost round, but having a plane surface as if it
were worn off by holding it on a grindstone, he would
probably get much the same meaning as he would by
looking at any other rock. But if a geologist should
find it, he would connect his past experience with
that aroused by the rock and say it called to his mind
an ice age, when tremendous ice fields covered all the
northern part of Indiana. The difference in these
THE MENTAL NATURE OP THE CHILD. 71
two men would be in the experience they brought to
bear upon the experience aroused by the rock.
A child called a jardiniere of ferns "a pot of green
A small boy called a locomotive "a big bow-wow. "
The south sea islanders called Captain Cook's
goats "horned hogs."
In each of the above cases the present experience
was connected with the past in trying to get meaning,
and the mind was able to do this because of the attri-
bute of apperception.
Self-activity. Some idea of self-activity may be
had by comparing objects which possess it with those
which do not. A sewing machine acts in sewing, but
always from a power without itself. A threshing
machine acts, but the cause of its activity is not with-
in it. All machines act hi a manner similar to the
threshing machine or sewing machine; that is, from
a cause not in themselves. A horse acts from a
cause within himself in taking food and changing it in-
to horse flesh; and, also, by moving from place to place,
he acts. A plant acts in growing by taking its food
from the soil and air and making it into plant tissue.
The action of the horse and plant are caused from
within while the action of the machine is caused from
without. The horse and the plant possess self-
activity but the machine does not. The mind pos-
sesses this attribute by which it causes its own
activities, and thus is self -active. The definition from
the above is as follows:
72 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
Self-activity is that attribute of mind by virtue of
which it causes itself to act.
Iterativeness. When the muscles of the arm and
fingers perform the movements in making any char-
acter in writing for the first time, the activity is done
with difficulty and very unskillfully, but repeated
attempts give more skill and success. Each act
makes the performance a little more easily accom-
plished. What was it that remained with the muscles
after each activity that caused them to perform the
act again with more ease? This can be answered only
by saying it is a tendency left in the muscle. By
tendency is meant a disposition to perform some activity.
Thus the plumule of a plant has a tendency to grow
upward, and the radix has a tendency to grow down-
ward. We fold a piece of paper, and then say it has
a tendency to fold in the same place again. The
mind possesses this attribute by virtue of which it
has a tendency to act as it has acted, and this is what
is called iterativeness. Conclusions from the above
study give the following definition:
Iterati veness is that attribute of mind by virtue of
which it tends to act again as it has acted.
Without iterativeness one could not learn to walk,
to talk, to write, nor could he learn any art whatever.
He could not remember anything nor make progress
in mental growth. In short, human life as we know
it would be an impossibility.
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 73
Rhythm. When the word, rhythm, is spoken, the
average person probably thinks of poetry and music.
But rhythm is an attribute that belongs to almost
everything in the world. Everything from a dew-
drop to an ocean, from a pebble to a continent, pos-
sesses rhythm. Every leaf, every flower, and every
blade of grass possesses rhythm. Rhythm in its
broadest sense is a thing, the departure from that
thing, and a return to it. The following is rhythmical:
"The day is cold and dark and dreary;
It rains and the wind is never weary."
In this there is the sound symbolized by eary in
the word, "dreary." This is the thing, and "It rains,
and the wind is never w" is the departure from it.
The return to the thing is eary in the word "weary."
In the maple leaf rhythm is manifested by a
portion on the right half always having a correspond-
ing like portion on the left half, the part between the
like parts being different. One of the like parts is
the thing, that between them is the departure from
it, and the other like part is the return to it. The
human mind possesses this tendency to act, to de-
part from it, and to return to it, and this is called the
attribute of rhythm. Since the mind is rhythmical
it likes rhythm in anything and dislikes that which
is not rhythmical. The world is full of rhythm, and
the human mind longs for it.
The following is a definition for rhythm as an
attribute of the mind: Rhythm is that attribute of
74 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
the mind by virtue of which the mind acts an activity,
departs from it, and tends to return to it at regularly
Activities of the Mind. If we will examine our
mental activities by looking within our minds, we
will find that we are sometimes almost wholly oc-
cupied in thinking, again we are depressed with
sorrow, and at other times we are almost wholly
occupied in directing our muscular or mental activ-
ities in doing something. These distinctions among
the mind's activities give grounds for the classification
of them into:
Thus knowing, feeling, and willing are the three
large classes into which all mental activities are
Knowing. An accurate statement for knowing
is, knowing is the mind's process of getting meaning.
But this statement does not give sufficient help unless
the term, meaning, is well understood. Most persons,
at first thought, would probably say that meaning is
something which belongs to objects in the external
world. But careful thinking reveals the fact that
things very unlike what the mind has ever known
have very little meaning to it. And this thought
carried out shows that, if it were possible to find any-
thing entirely different from anything the mind has
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 75
ever known, it would suggest absolutely no meaning
to the mind. Again, two persons look at the word,
obliviscor, and while one gets no meaning from it, to
the other it means / forget. So scarcely any two
persons get the same meaning from an object or
event which they see. An object or event stimulates
to an activity of the mind, and, if the mind has past
mental activities of a similar character to connect the
present activity with, it is said the mind gets mean-
ing. From this it may be seen that meaning is a
thing which is in the mind. That is to say, meaning
is relation; and further, it is the relation between
present mental experiences and past mental exper-
iences. But even here there are two terms whose
meaning must be understood. The first, experience,
explained in a former paragraph, is any change, or
activity, and any mental experience is any mental
change, or activity. The second, relation, is the like-
ness between mental experiences. Relation means
in this connection what it means wherever used;
namely, the connection the mind sees between its
experiences because of their likeness.
We are now in a position to give the following
definitions for knowing:
Knowing is the mind's process in getting meaning.
Knowing is the mind's process in grasping the re-
lation between its present and past experiences.
Discriminating and Unifying. Discriminating is
seeing differences and unifying is seeing likenesses.
76 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
The mind in knowing sees likenesses and differences
between its experiences and thus discriminates and
unifies. Thus knowing is both discriminating and
unifying. One thing necessary in knowing a maple
tree is to see the difference in the mental activity it
arouses and in the mental activity aroused by an oak
tree; and a second thing necessary is to see the like-
ness between the activity aroused by the maple tree
and the activities aroused by maple trees in the past.
All Knowing Indirect. There is no way for the
mind to get meaning directly from an object. The
past experience must always come in as a factor in
knowing. This truth has led psychologists to say
that all knowing is indirect, or mediative. That is to
say the experience aroused by any object is always
referred to the past experience, and this act of refer-
ring to the past experience is the mediative element in all
knowing. It is this act of reference that makes the
Feeling. Every experience the mind has changes
it both temporarily and permanently. It never is
after an experience quite what it was before the ex-
perience. Some of these experiences change the
mind for the better and some change it for the worse,
but all must change the mind permanently in some
way. This change of the self by an experience both
temporary and permanent is called tlie value of an exper-
ience by psychologists. If the experience is in har-
mony with the growth toward self-realization, the
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 77
experience has a positive value to the self. If the
experience is not in harmony with the growth toward
self-realization, it has a negative value to the self.
The mind has the ability of being aware, to a
greater or less extent, of the value of its experiences
to itself. That is to say, the mind knows or thinks
it knows, at least, when it has an experience, whether
the experience is in harmony or conflict with its
growth toward self-realization. It is no doubt true
that experiences are unfavorable to the growth to-
ward self realization, even when the mind regards
them as favorable. And it holds equally true that an
experience may be favorable to the growth towards
self-realization, yet the mind regard it as unfavorable.
When the mind has an experience, and becomes
aware of the value of this experience to the self, the
state of mind which arises as a result of this becom-
ing aware is feeling.
Feeling is the state of mind ivhich results from the
mind's becoming aware of the value of an experience to
An analysis of this definition reveals the follow-
ing points :
1. A state of mind.
2. An experience.
3. The value of an experience.
4. Becoming aware.
5. The self.
78 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
By state of mind is meant the disturbed or
agitated condition of consciousness. It is a deeper
condition than what is ordinarily called mental ac-
tivities. In the activity of a muscle, the -whole muscle
acts together, but the individual molecules in the
muscle act, too. The activities of the mind are anal-
ogous to the activities of the muscle as a whole while
the state of mind is analogous to the molecular action.
Feeling is always a state, or condition, of the mind,
and is always an accompaniment of an activity.
An experience, as before said, is any change, or
activity, whatever. It is the thing which feeling al-
The value of an experience is the effect of the ex-
perience on the life of the person. This effect is in part
temporary and in part permanent. One thing is
certain, one's experiences organize, build his char-
acter, for a higher or lower destiny.
Becoming aware is the recognition by the mind
of the value of an experience. The thing become
aware of is thus the value of an experience. The mind
does not always consciously think out the value of an
experience, but it either consciously or unconsciously
The self in the widest sense includes both the
body and the mind. Thus there are the physical self
and the mental self. The mental self is the original
capacity of the mind to know, feel, and will plus the
effect of its experiences upon if.
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 79
Love, Hate, and Indifference. Love, hate, and in-
difference are called the three fundamental forms of
feeling; that is, all feeling is one of the three: love, or
hate, or indifference.
When the mind has an experience which it re-
gards as having a positive value to the self the feeling
which arises is love, or like. The definition is as fol-
lows: Love is the feeling which arises ivhen the mind
has an experience which it regards as having a positive
value to the self.
If the mind has an experience which it regards
as having a negative value to the self, the feeling
which arises is hate, or dislike. The definition is as
follows: Hate is the feeling that arises when the mind
has an experience which it regards as having a negative
value to the self.
If the mind regards the experience as having
little or no value to the self, the state of mind which
arises is indifference. The definition is as follows:
Indifference is that state of mind which arises when the
mind has an experience which it regards as having little
or no positive or negative value to the self. There is
perhaps no such thing as absolute indifference with
respect to anything, for indifference is a state of
mind in which there is an absence of feeling. We,
however, have some feeling with respect to every-
The Function of Feeling. Feeling is a kind of
safeguard which nature has given us. It urges us to
80 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
act; that is, feeling is a spring to action. It also urges
us to avoid experiences which hinder our develop-
Feeling always accompanies activity. If the ac-
tivity causes growth in self-realization, a pleasant
feeling accompanies it to urge us to repeat the
activity for the self -development which it furnishes.
If the activity hinders growth in self-realization, a
disagreeable feeling accompanies it to urge us to
avoid the activity because of its hindrance to our self-
Everything which one voluntarily does, he does
because of feeling. Thus feeling is both a mainspring
and a guide in human action, and this is its function.
Willing. Willing is a complex process involving
both knowing and feeling, but characterized by striv-
ing to act in some way. The process of willing
always begins with an impulse. Impulse is an excess
of energy, or it is a felt pressure to act in some way.
Impulse produces some sort of change. The impulse
which urges the bird to build its nest is a good ex-
ample of a typical impulse. There are, however,
several kinds of impulse. The thing which causes
the little child to throw his arms and legs about in
any direction before he has control of himself is the
impulse, or excess of energy. By a rather complex
process impulse in the act of willing is changed into
desire. Desire is a feeling directed toward something
which it is thought will satisfy the feeling. And
THE MENTAL NATURE OP THE CHILD. 81
desire in the process of willing is changed into choice.
Then, lastly, the mind directs the activities toward
the realization of the choice. From the above the defi-
nition for willing is as follows: Willing is the process
in which the mind changes impulse into desire , desire into
choice , and in which the mind seeks to realize the choice.
An analysis of the definition of willing shows the
following points in it:
4. The process by which impulse becomes
5. The process by which desire becomes choice.
6. The process by which choice seeks to realize
Impulse and desire have been explained. Choice
will be explained after the discussion of point five.
A careful analysis of the process by which im-
pulse becomes desire will show the following points
involved in it:
1. The mind sees its real condition.
2. The mind sees an ideal condition of itself.
3. The mind compares these two.
4. The mind decides that one is better or worse
than the other.
5. A feeling of dissatisfaction arises.
6. This feeling becomes desire.
82 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
Illustration. A student knows of a lecture, which
arouses an impulse in him. He is at home his real
condition; he thinks of his being at the lecture the
ideal condition; he compares these two; he decides
that to be at the lecture would be a better condition
than to be at home; then he is dissatisfied to be at
home, and so desires to have himself at the lecture.
The process in which the desire becomes choice
involves what is called the conflict of desires. That is
to say, there are more than one desire before the
inind and from which the mind must select. In
the illustration given the student probably desired to
stay at home and study his lesson, but he also desired
to go to the lecture. Since he could not both go to
the lecture and stay at home, there was a conflict of
the two desires. In this case he selects his desire to
go to the lecture and drops the other out of mind, and
this act of selecting is the choice. Thus the thing
chosen is a desire. An analysis reveals the following
1. Two or more desires before the mind.
2. The mind compares these.
3. The mind decides which is preferable.
4. The selecting of the preferable one the
The process by which the mind seeks to realize
the choice consists simply of the directing of the
activities to perform the deed. The directing is purely
mental, but the activities directed may be either
THE MENTAL NATURE OP THE CHILD. 83
mental or physical. In the illustration above, the
mind's directing the physical activities of going to
the lecture was the process in which the mind was
seeking to realize the choice.
The Functions of the Will. Repeated acts of the
will result in the formation of self-control and char-
acter. So it is the function of willing to give these
two things: character and self-control.
Self -control is of three kinds -.physical, prudential,
and moral. Thus the function of the will is to give
physical control, prudential control, moral control, and
The Study of the Will. Since the will is the power
by which the process of willing is carried on, and the
power can be studied only by studying its activities,
all study of the will, no matter how far pursued, con-
sists only in elaborating the points begun here. That
is to say, to make a profound and intensive study of
the will would be nothing more than elaborating im-
pulse, desire, choice, self -control, and character.
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD.
The Development of Knowing. The best way to
study knowing intensively is to study its develop-
ment. But the question, What is development of
knowing? at once suggests itself. To answer this
question it is necessary to rethink that knotting is
grasping the relation between present and past mental
experiences. Then knowing which is developed only
to a small extent is that knowing in which but few
relations are grasped; and knowing which is highly
developed is that knowing in which many relations
are grasped. From which it appears that develop-
ment in knowing consists in grasping more and more
relations. To show then that one kind of knowing is
more developed than another kind is to show that
more relations are grasped in one kind than in
Illustration. If one studies a butterfly but five
minutes, he knows little about it because he has seen
the butterfly in only a few relations; that is, he has
grasped but few relations, and his knowledge of the
butterfly is but little developed. Suppose now that
he studies the butterfly five months; then he will
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 85
know much about it because he has seen it in many
relations; that is, he has grasped many relations, and
his knowledge of the butterfly is much developed.
Thus the development of one's knowledge of a thing
consists in grasping more and more relations. And
we again reach the conclusion that development in
knowing is gaining in the number of relations grasped*
Stages in the Development of Knowing. As know-
ing develops it passes through various stages some-
what analogous to one's passing through stages on a
journey. These stages have been given the following
names by psychologists in the order of their develop-
The Basis of Development. The sensation is the
basis of development in knowing; and it is likewise
the basis of development in feeling and willing.
The sensation is the first, most primitive, and
least developed mental activity which the mind ever
has. It is the first conscious step in the mental
86 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
changes succeeding the physical changes. It helps
to bridge across from the physical to the mental.
If one places his hand on a chestnut burr, it acts
as a stimulus, which excites the outer, or peripheral,
nerve ending. This disturbance of the peripheral
nerve ending extends along the nerve fiber to the
brain and there arouses a disturbance. This dis-
turbance of the brain is followed by a change of the
mind which causes a state of consciousness the
From this it may be seen that the steps leading
up to the sensation are the following:
2. Excitation of the peripheral nerve ending.
3. Transmission of the impulse.
4. Brain change.
5. Corresponding mental change.
6. The state of consciousness tfie sensation.
The stimulus is any form of motion which comes
in contact with some part of the nervous system.
Thus the stimulus of hearing is motion in the air; the
stimulus of sight is motion of the ether; the stimulus
of touch is the motion in the molecules of matter.
An impulse has been well defined as an excess of
energy. Thus in the transmission of the impulse
one particle of nervous matter has an excess of
energy and strikes against another particle and
transfers some of its energy to it; and it in turn
strikes the next, transferring some of its energy to
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 87
the next, and so on till the impulse reaches the brain.
Then the disturbance spreads and produces the
An induction from the above study gives the
following definition for the sensation:
The sensation is a state of consciousness arising
from a change in the mind corresponding to a change in
the orain caused by some external stimulus.
Students sometimes get the wrong impression
that the sensation is in part a physical thing. Four
of the steps leading to the sensation are physical, but
the sensation itself is a state of consciousness, and
consciousness is purely a mental thing.
Classes of Sensations. There are two classes of
sensations : general, or organic, and special.
General, or organic, sensations are those which
give us a knowledge of the ill-being or well-being of
our bodies, and have no special sense organs. Pain,
fatigue, hunger, and thirst are general sensations.
Special sensations are those which mainly give
us a knowledge of objects around us, and have special
sense organs. Light, sound, odor, and flavor are
Characteristics of the Sensation. The sensation
has four characteristics as follows:
4. Local sign.
88 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
The quality of sensations is the main thing which
enables the mind to tell the differences between
things. The mind knows hot from cold, sweet from
sour, rough from smooth, white from black, etc.,
because of a difference in the quality of its sensa-
The main thing which causes a difference in the
quality of the sensation is a difference in the quality
of the stimulus.
The intensity of sensations is very well illus-
trated by the difference in the sensation furnished
by a light of ten candle power and one of seventy-five
candle power; or by the difference in the sensation
furnished by the light from a kerosene lamp and by
that of an electric light.
The main cause of the difference in the intensity
of sensations is the difference in the intensity of the
The duration of the sensation is indicated by the
time during which it lasts. Thus the difference be-
tween a half note and a whole note of the same pitch,
intensity, and quality, is in their duration. Again,
some tastes endure for a long time while others
The mind is able through the sensation to tell
the point of application of the stimulus. Thus when
the foot is touched the mind does not make the mis-
take of thinking it is the face which is touched. That
characteristic of the sensation which enables the
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 89
mind to tell the point of application of the stimulus is
the local sign.
The Aspects of the Sensation. If one would put
his hand on a hot stove, the sensation got would
(1) enable him to know something, (2) give pain,
(3) stimulate him to act. Thus the sensation has
three aspects, and they are as follows:
The intellectual aspect of the sensation is that
one which enables the mind to get knowledge from
the sensation. It furnishes the basis for the develop-
ment of knowing.
The emotional aspect of the sensation is that
aspect which is pleasurable or painful. It furnishes
the basis for the development of feeling.
The volitional aspect of the sensation is that
aspect which urges to action. It furnishes the basis
for the development of willing.
Comparison of General and Special Sensations.
The following points in the comparison of general
and special sensations are worthy of notice:
1. General sensations enable the mind to know
the well-being or ill-being of the body, the special,
mainly the outside world.
2. General sensations have no special sense
organs, but the special have.
90 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
3. The knowledge got through general sensa-
tions is vague, while that obtained through special
sensations is much more definite.
4. The emotional aspect predominates in the
general sensations, the intellectual, in the special.
Sense-perception. The sensation is not knowing,
but sense-perception, the first stage in the develop-
ment of knowing, is based upon and developed out of
the sensation. As soon as the mind begins to connect
its sensations, and see the likeness and difference
between them, that is, relate them, it is sense-perceiv-
ing. The sensation itself is an isolated thing.
Thus sensations are the material which the mind
works up into knowledge of external objects, as it
were. They are analogous to the threads which are
woven into cloth; the cloth is analogous to the knowl-
edge, and the weaving process is analogous to sense-
perceiving. In sense-perception the mind interprets
the sensations; that is*, gets meaning sees the like-
ness and difference between them. We are now in a
position to give the following definition for it:
Sense-perception is the mental process of inter-
preting the sensation corresponding to some external
The mind usually regards its sensations as
attributes of objects. Thus the mind regards the
sensation, sour, as an attribute of acid; the sensation,
sweet, as an attribute of sugar; the sensations, green,
red, etc., as attributes of objects. It is in this way
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 91
that the mind learns to interpret sensations and to
know the corresponding objects. Thus the mind
interprets a patch of red color as a strawberry; a
patch of blue color as a bunch of grapes; a certain
note as a bluebird, or a certain odor as a clover field.
Classes of Sense - perception. There are two
classes of sense-perception on the basis of develop-
ment: original sense-perception, and acquired sense-
If one learns that a piece of red-hot iron is hot
by placing his hand upon it, he gets his knowledge
through the temperature sense, the only way there is
of directly getting such knowledge. At first, sight
could not give such knowledge, but later the mind
would know that the iron is hot through sight.
The perception of the iron as hot through the
temperature sense is an example of original sense-
perception; its perception through sight is an example
of acquired sense-perception.
Original sense-perception is that kind of sense-
perception in which the mind interprets the sensations
from one sense without the aid of the sensations from
any other sense.
Acquired sense-perception is that kind of sense-
perception in ivhich the mind interprets the sensation
from one sense by the aid of the sensations from some
The Object of Sense-perception. The object with
which sense-perception deals is one which possesses
92 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
marks that distinguish it from all other things; one
which is external to the mind; one which occupies
space, and one present in time and space. Thus the
object of sense- perception is:
4. Present in time and space.
By present in time is meant coexistent with the
act of sense-perception. And by present in space is
meant in such a position as to furnish a stimulus to
The Percept. Every process produces some sort
of a product. Thus the product of sense-perception
is called a percept. The percept is the idea of the
sense- perceived object with its characteristics just
mentioned above. The definition is as follows:
The percept is an ide.a of a particular, external,
material object present in time and space.
Memory. Every experience the mind has leaves
a tendency for the mind to act again a little more
easily, as it acted in that experience. This tendency
for the mind to act again as it acted before is called
retention in psychology. Thus we learn the definition
for the noun to-day, and to-morrow we are able to
give it when called upon; and we say we retained it.
But where was it in the meantime? It remained with
the mind only as a tendency. That is to say, the
mind keeps the disposition to act again as it acted
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 93
when the noun was learned. When the mind acts an
experience it has before acted the process is called
reacting, or reproducing. These two things, retention
and reacting, are elements of memory. But there
must also be another element. When the mind re-
acts an experience, if it is a complete process of
memory, it must be aware that the present ex-
perience is one it has had before. This process of
seeing that the present experience is not a new one,
but one the mind has had before, is called identifying.
The present experience is identified with the past
experience. This act of identifying is the third
element in memory. We are now in a position to
give the following definition for memory:
Memory is the mental process of retaining, reacting,
and identifying past mental experiences.
As before said, retention is the mind's tendency
to act again as it has acted. Just what this tendency
is in ultimate analysis, no one knows, but that the
disposition to act again as it has acted is a mark of
the mind is very evident.
The reacting is just the working of the mind as
it has worked before. Thus if the mind thinks that
life is an intense struggle to-day and to-morrow thinks
the same thing, the mind has reacted a past ex-
When one reacts an experience and is conscious
that he has had this experience before, he is identi-
fying the present experience with the past. The
94 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
identifying element is absolutely necessary to mem-
ory. Without it the act could not be called one of
The Classes of Memory. On the basis of develop-
ment there are four classes of memory, as follows:
2. Remembrance of the Particular.
3. Remembrance of the General.
Recognition is the least developed kind of mem-
ory and is most like sense-perception, but it is a little
advance in development over sense-perception. In
recognition the object is always present as it was in
sense-perception, and the object is always particular.
In addition to reperceiving the object the mind al-
ways knows that it is reacting the activity corre-
sponding to it at a different time from the former
activity and usually at a different place.
Thus the knoioing that the mind has perceived the
object before, the grasping of more time relations, and
more place relations constitute the advance in de-
velopment of recognition over sense-perception.
Illustration. As one passes down the street and
meets his friends, he says he recognizes each one; he
is using the term, recognize, just right, for in each
case he is reknowing his friend in an act of recogni-
tion. The object, his friend, is particular, present,
and is known to have been known before.
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 95-
Remembrance of the particular is the next higher
kind of memory. In this kind of memory the object
remembered is never present, but it is always a
particular object. The process is as follows: the
mind has an activity corresponding to some object
some element of which is like some previously known
object. From the suggestion of this like element the
mind reacts the entire activity appropriate to the
previously known object, and thus remembers it.
The main advance of remembrance of the par-
ticular over recognition is that it enables the mind to
think of objects when they are not present. This is
an immense advance, for to be able to think of objects
only in their presence would detract tremendously
from the mind's power of thought.
Illustration. One sees a basket of fruit sitting in
a show window. This makes him think of a par-
ticular fruit farm he has seen in Michigan. From
the suggestion of the like element in the basket of
fruit the mind goes ahead and finishes up the whole
activity appropriate to the fruit farm previously
known, and thus remembers it.
The next higher kind of memory is remembrance
of the general. In this kind of memory the mind
remembers a general idea, or general notion. If,
when a child is given a piece of crayon and told to
make triangles on the board, he is able to do so, it is.
because he remembers the general idea, triangle.
96 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
The process is as follows: the mind has an ac-
tivity corresponding to something some element of
which is like some element of the general idea. From
the suggestion of the like element, the mind rethinks
the general idea, and thus remembers it.
Illustration. A teacher held up an overshoe and
asked the students what it put them in mind of. A
student said it put him in mind of a flatboat. The
teacher asked what one and the student said no par-
ticular one. The student's act of memory was
remembrance of tlie general. The advance of remem-
brance of the general over remembrance of the
particular is that it enables the mind to think of
things in classes or generals. This enables the mind
to save much time and energy.
Recollection is the most developed kind of mem-
ory. It is characterized by a special effort of the
will to get hold of some associated line which will
suggest the thing to be remembered.
The process is as follows: the mind has an ac-
tivity corresponding to some object some element of
which is missing. The mind is aware that there is a
missing element, and makes a special effort of the
will to bring into consciousness some associated line
to suggest the missing element. If it succeeds, the
act is complete.
Illustration. I see a flower, but can not remem-
ber its name the missing element. I then try to
think where I saw the flower before, how its name
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 97
looked on the page, etc., and thus succeed in recalling
A gentleman stepped into a store and saw a man
whose face seemed familiar, but could not remember
his name or where he had seen him before. He then
made an effort to get hold of some associated line to
suggest the name and circumstances under which he
had been known. He went back to the different
places in which his life had been spent for five years
and thus remembered the missing elements.
The advance of recollection over the other kinds
of memory is in (1) the effort involved; (2) the number
of relations grasped. In the effort to get hold of some
associated line to suggest the missing element more
relations are grasped than in any other kind of
The Law of Memory. There is but one law of
memory, and it is as follows: The mind remembers
things wholly through their associations. Thus, if
when one sees a thistle, Scotland comes into mind, it
is because the thistle and Scotland have been asso-
ciated in that mind; if one remembers France when
he sees the lily, it is because France and the lily have
Association. But the question, What is associa-
tion? at once suggests itself. When one looks at the
word, dog, the idea, dog, comes into consciousness.
This occurs because the idea of the word, dog, and
the idea, dog, have been held in consciousness at the
98 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
same time; also, if two or more things have been held
in consciousness in close succession, they will suggest
each other. Thus it appears that association is noth-
ing more than the process of holding two or more
things in consciousness at the same time or in close
succession. The following is the formal definition
Association is the mental process of holding two or
more things in consciousness at the same time or in close
Laios of Association. There are two classes of
laws of association: primary, and secondary.
The primary law of association explains why
ideas succeed one another at all in consciousness.
The secondary laws explain why, when several ideas
have been associated with an idea, it suggests one in
preference to another. Thus, if ideas 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6,
and 7 have been associated with idea x, when x comes
into consciousness, why will idea 5 come into con-
sciousness rather than 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, or 7? The secon-
dary laws explain this.
The Primary Law Stated. The following is the
statement for the primary law of association: When
two or more things have been lield in consciousness at the
same time or in close succession and one is afterward
presented, it is the tendency for the other or others to
come into consciousness.
The Secondary Laws Stated. The secondary laws
are five in number and are as follows:
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 99
1. The law of correlation: Those tilings held to-
gether in consciousness with the most essential likeness
are, other things equal, the most strongly associated.
2. The law of repetition: Those things held to-
gether in consciousness the most frequently are, other
things equal, the most strongly associated.
3. The law of emotional preference: Those
things held together in consciousness with the highest
degree of feeling are, other things equal, the most strong-
4. The law of voluntary attention: Those things
held together in consciousness with the highest degree of
attention are, other things equal, the most strongly
5. The law of recentness: Those things held
together in consciousness the most recently are, other
things equal, the most strongly associated.
The law of correlation may be illustrated as fol-
lows: if Bonaparte and Alexander have been asso-
ciated at one time, and Bonaparte and Newton at
another time, when Bonaparte comes into mind,
according to the law of correlation, Alexander would
come to mind in preference to Newton. This would
be true, because there are more essential likenesses
between Bonaparte and Alexander than there are
between Bonaparte and Newton.
The law of repetition may be illustrated as fol-
lows : if the Declaration of Independence and Thomas
Jefferson have been held together in consciousness
100 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
more often than the Louisiana Purchase and Thomas
Jefferson, when Thomas Jefferson comes into con-
sciousness the Declaration of Independence will
^appear in preference to the Louisiana Purchase.
The following will illustrate the law of emotional
preference: a boy was crossing a bridge on horseback,
when a broken board flew up at one end because of
the horse's stepping upon it at the other end. The
horse becoming frightened at this jumped and fell at
full length off the end of the bridge into the mud and
i^ater some eight or ten feet below. Now when this
boy sees a broken board in a bridge, he thinks of
this incident in preference to other things, because
of the high degree of feeling connected with it.
The following illustrates the law of voluntary
attention: if a friend walks past one holding a vase in
his hand and one gives him careful attention on one
day and on a second day the same friend carrying a
book passes one and is given only slight attention,
when the friend comes into consciousness the vase will
appear in consciousness in preference to the book.
The illustration of the law of recentness is as
follows: if one has recently been reading of the
numerous dogs of Constantinople, and before this
has read the Mohammedan's call to prayer, accord-
ing to the law of recentness, when Constantinople
comes into consciousness its numerous dogs will
appear in consciousness in preference to the call to
THE MENTAL NATURE OP THE CHILD. 101
Imagination. The mind has the ability of getting
ideas and then of putting these ideas into mental
images, or pictures. If one tells you to shut your
eyes and look at the following described apple with
the mind's eye, the process of forming the picture of
it is imagining:
A large dark-red apple, three inches in diameter,
almost spherical, with a rotten spot as large as a
finger nail on one side, and a worm hole on the oppo-
site side, is lying on a platter sitting on a stand in the-
center of a room.
The pictures formed by the imagination may be
almost like objects which have been seen or they may
be almost entirely changed; that is, highly idealized.
It makes no difference how much they are idealized
the imagination still depends upon the memory for
the material for its images. The Ancients imagined
a huge dog, Cerberus, with three immense heads,
whose body bristled with snakes in the place of
hairs, and whose barking resembled peals of thunder,
as the guardian of Hades. There is nothing new in
this picture but the combination. They were familiar
with dogs, heads, snakes, and peals of thunder. The
only new thing is the combination. What is true of
this case is true of all cases of imagination. Imagi-
nation is thus dependent upon sense-perception and
memory for the material which it builds into its
images. The image made by imagination is always a
particular thing; that is, the mind regards it as.
separate from all other things.
102 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
From the foregoing the definition of imagination
is as follows: Imagination is the mental process of em-
bodying an idea in a particular form, or image.
The Advance in Development of Imagination over
Memory. If one should study a vase for one hour and
then go to another room and attempt to draw it, he
would find many places which he would not quite
remember. Imagination enables one to fill out these
places in a picture where memory fails him. Thus
imagination fills up the discrepancies of memory.
Sense-perception confines the mind strictly to
the present time; memory enables the mind to know
past time, but it is only the imagination which en-
ables the mind to know future time and to project
itself into the future. This enables the mind to set
up ideals and to plan for the future.
The integrity of the act of memory depends up-
on the accuracy of the reproduction. Thus the mind
regards itself as remembering well or poorly accord-
ingly as it reproduces accurately or inaccurately.
This is not the case with the imagination. In acts of
imagination the mind knows its freedom in changing
or idealizing. The imagination is thus a much freer
activity of the mind than memory.
These three advances of imagination in develop-
ment over memory may be summed up as follows:
1. The imagination fills out the incompleteness
in acts of memory and thus enables the mind to think
of objects as complete wholes.
THE MENTAL NATURE OP THE CHILD. 103
2. The imagination enables the mind to grasp
future time and thus to project itself into the future.
3. The imagination is much freer than memory
in its idealizing activity.
Classes of Imagination. On the basis of develop-
ment there are three classes of imagination: repro-
ductive^ mechanical, and creative.
Reproductive imagination is the least developed
kind of imagination. It is but a small advance in
development over memory. If one should study a
tree on the lawn for an hour, then go to his room and
draw it the image produced would be as nearly literal
as possible; that is, as nearly an accurate represen-
tation of the tree as possible. The kind of imagina-
tion employed would be the reproductive.
The definition is as follows: Reproductive im-
agination is that kind of imagination which forms
images as nearly literal as possible.
The mechanical imagination is the next higher
kind. It is that kind of imagination which makes
images by arbitrarily separating or combining parts
of images of the reproductive imagination. If the
wings of birds are combined with the forms of cows,
the image is the result of the mechanical imagination,
or if the head of a man is imaged floating through
space, it is the work of the mechanical imagination.
The following is the definition: Mechanical im-
agination is that kind of imagination which forms
104 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
images by arbitrarily separating or putting together
images of the reproductive imagination.
The creative imagination is the highest kind. It
is also called constructive, inventive, and scientific
imagination. In this kind of imagination the mind
fashions the material which it builds into an image to
suit its purpose. It is the kind used in all the crea-
tions of man, as a bridge, a bicycle, an automobile, a
house, a poem, etc. It is purposive to a high degree.
The entire image in this kind of imagination is a
product highly idealized and made up of smaller
images which have also been idealized to suit the
The definition is as follows: Creative imagi-
nation is that kind of imagination tvhich builds up com-
plex images made by adapting the images of reproductive
and mechanical imagination.
Conception. In order to know any object the
mind must see it in both its particular and universal
aspects must see what distinguishes it from all
other things and also what connects it with other
things. Some of the stages of knowing emphasize
one aspect of objects and some the other. Thus
in sense-perception, memory, and imagination the
mind emphasizes the particular aspects of objects,
but in conception, definition, judgment, reasoning, and
systematization the mind emphasizes the universal
aspects of objects.
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD.
Sense-perception, memory, and imagination deal
with particular ideas. Conception, too, deals with an
idea, but not a particular idea. It deals with what is.
called a general idea, or general notion. But what
is a general idea, or notion? If one should set out to
examine triangles, he would find that every triangle:
1. Is a polygon. 2. Has just three sides. 3. Ha&
just three angles. He would also find that each one
has several attributes not found in all the others, and
that each one has some attributes not found in any of
the others. These last two kinds of attributes are
necessary to the triangle, but do not enter into the
general idea of the triangle. The general idea r
triangle, is made up of ideas, one, two, and three above*
That is to say, it is made up of those attributes that
could be found in any triangle. The following is the
definition for a general idea:
A general idea is an idea ivhich corresponds to th&
common attributes of a class of objects.
The terms, concept, general idea, and general"
notion, all have the same meaning. This should be
remembered. The process in which concepts are
formed is conception, and the definition is as followsr
Conception is the mind's process of forming an idea
which corresponds to the common attributes of a class of
Method of Forming Concepts in Actual Life. In
actual life concepts are formed as follows : first, the
mind perceives an object of a class for the first time
106 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
and gets a sort of tentative concept which usually
contains attributes not possessed by all the objects of
the class; secondly, the mind perceives other objects
of this kind and begins to drop from the concept any
attributes which are not common and perhaps to add
some common attributes not at first perceived; this
process of changing the concept because of further
experience is continued until just those attributes
which belong to every object of the class remain.
Illustration. The mind naturally gets its general
ideas from the study of particulars. Suppose the
first barn a child sees is a square one, painted red,
Tvith roof sloping but one way, and containing only
hay and corn. From this particular the mind's idea
of barn will contain square form, red color, this par-
ticular kind of roof, and fdled with hay and corn. To
be brief, the mind from the study of particulars goes
on correcting its idea of barn by dropping out
elements, and possibly adding some, until just those
attributes remain which are possessed in common by
This is the way the mind naturally gets its con-
cepts in life. When it examines the first particular,
it forms a tentative, or trial, concept. But it goes on
and examines other particulars to correct this ten-
tative concept. It should be noted carefully that the
mind naturally examines the real, particular object
of which it forms its concepts.
The Logical Steps in Conception. The following
are the logical steps in an act of conception:
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 107
1. The mind acts an activity appropriate to a
particular object by thinking several of its attributes.
2. The mind repeats this process with other
3. The mind compares and contrasts these ob-
4. The mind abstracts the common attributes
by holding them in consciousness and dropping more
or less from consciousness the others.
5. The mind generalizes by extending the com-
mon attributes of the particulars studied out to all
objects of the class.
6. The mind thinks the name of the class.
The first two steps may be put together, thus
making but five steps as follows: (1) the examination
of particulars; (2) comparison and contrast; (3) ab-
straction; (4) generalization; (5) denomination.
The Aspects of the Concept. The concept has two
aspects: intension, and extension, or intent and extent.
When the mind thinks the general idea, triangle,
it thinks the common attributes which make up the
idea, but it also thinks of the particular objects to
which the concept applies. In the first case the mind
is thinking of the intension, intent, or content these
terms all have the same meaning of the concept.
In the second case the mind is thinking of the ex-
tension, or extent, of the concept. The following are
statements for these two aspects of the concept:
The intension of a concept is that aspect of the concept
108 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
which refers to the number of common attributes in it.
The extension of a concept is that aspect of the concept
which refers to the number of particular objects to which
Definition. The popular notion of definition is
that it is some sort of formal statement, either oral
or written, to be learned and remembered. But
definition in its essential nature is a mental process,
and sufficiently distinct to be regarded a stage in the
development of knowing.
An examination of how the mind naturally forms
a definition will reveal the nature of the process.
Let the thing to be defined be the triangle. The
mind examines a particular triangle, noting its at-
tributes; then it examines a second triangle, noting
its attributes; then a third, and so on. The mind
compares these various particular triangles and
selects out their common attributes. It finds them
1. The triangle is a polygon.
2. It has three sides.
3. It has three angles.
The mind now makes a synthesis of these com-
mon truths of triangles in the form of a thought,
which gives the following: A triangle is a polygon
having three sides and three angles. This, it is evident,
is a definition of the triangle, and the mind's process
of arriving at this mental product is the mental
process of definition.
THE MENTAL NATURE OP THE CHILD. 109
From the above the following definition of defini-
tion is reached:
Definition is the mind's process of making a syn-
thesis of the common attributes of a class of objects in the
form of a thought.
For instance, the mind examines several par-
ticular nouns in sentences, and sees the following
truths of each one:
1. It is a substantive word.
2. It names the object which it expresses.
The mind makes a synthesis of these truths as
follows: A noun is a substantive word which names its
object. But this defines the noun.
In making a definition the mind takes the follow-
1. It thinks the name of the thing to be defined.
2. It puts the thing to be denned in the next larger
3. It sets the thing to be defined off from all other things
of this class.
For instance, in the definition of the sentence,
"The sentence is that language unit which expresses a
thought," "The sentence" names what is to be defined;
"is that language unit" puts the thing to be defined
into the class, language units, the next known class
larger than the sentence; and "which expresses a
thought" sets the sentence off from the other things
of the class, the word and discourse.
The thing defined is always a class. When the
mind defines a prism, the definition is not for some
110 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
particular prism, but it is for the class, prism. Thus,
a definition must include all the particulars of the
class to be defined. That is to say, it must be in-
clusive. The definition must also exclude everything
except the particulars of the class defined; that is, it
must be exclusive.
The mind's natural mode of defining is thus as
I 1 . The mind examines particular objects of the
class to be defined.
2 1 . The mind selects out the common attributes
of these particular objects.
3 1 . The mind makes a synthesis of these com-
mon attributes in the form of a thought by:
1*. Thinking the name of the class to be
2*. Putting the thing to be defined into the
next larger known class.
3 a . Setting the thing to be defined off from all
other things of that class.
Laws of Definition. Thus to guide in making
definitions the following laws may be formulated:
1. Name the thing to be defined.
2. Put the thing to be defined into the next larger
3. Set the thing to be defined off from all other
thmgs of that class.
Judgment. The mind gets particular ideas
through sense-perception, and general ideas through
THE MENTAL NATURE OP THE CHILD. Ill
conception. In judgment the mind grasps and em-
phasizes the relation between ideas. For example,,
the mind of man had an idea, coal, and the idea, fuel*
for years before it ever grasped the relation between
those ideas. When at last it did, it asserted that coal
is a fuel. This process of grasping the relation be-
tween the idea, coal, and the idea, fuel, and asserting^
it is the mind's process of judging. Thus the defini-
tion of judgment is as follows:
Judgment is the mind's process of grasping the
relation between ideas and asserting it.
The product of an act of sense-perception is a
percept; of an act of conception, a concept; of an act of
definition, a definition; of an act of judgment, a judg-
Every judgment is expressed by a sentence, if
expressed at all. Thus the sentence is the symbol of
the judgment. It is commonly said that the sentence
expresses the thought, and this is right, because the
thought and the judgment mean precisely the same
The sentence, then, bears the relation to the
judgment of the symbol to the thing symbolized. And
the judgment bears the relation to the sentence of the
thing symbolized to the symbol.
The act of judging is a triple activity of the mind;
that is, a one act made up of three. The following
are the steps in judging:
1. The mind acts some idea.
112 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
2. The mind acts a second idea related to the
3. The mind grasps and asserts the relation be-
tween these ideas.
The Elements of the Judgment. Since there are
three activities in making every judgment, there
are three essential elements in every judgment: the
psychical subject, the psychical predicate, and the psy-
chical copula. The following are definitions for them:
The psychical subject is the idea of the object about
which something is asserted.
The psychical predicate is the idea of that which
is asserted about the object of which the subject of the
judgment is the idea.
The psychical copula is the idea of the relation
^between the subject of the judgment and the predicate of
The Two Aspects of Judgments. Judgments have
two aspects: intension and extension. The inten-
sion and extension of judgments are not so much
two separate things as the two different aspects of
the same thing. Thus every judgment is at one time
both a judgment of intension and extension. If the
mind thinks man is an animal, it may refer the sub-
ject, the idea, man, to the predicate, the idea, animal,
with the idea of extending or universalizing the
subject, for animal is a larger class than man. In
this case the judgment is one of extension. But if the
mind refers the predicate, the idea, animal, to the sub-
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 113
ject, the idea, man, with the idea of enriching the
subject in meaning by adding the element of animal
to it, the judgment is one of intension.
Reasoning. In judgment the mind emphasizes
the relation between ideas. In reasoning it empha-
sizes the relation among judgments. In every act of
reasoning there are three judgments involved, so
related that the last is reached because of its relation
to the other two. Thus having the two judgments,
"Man is mortal," and "William is a man," the mind
reaches the third judgment, "William is mortal," and
this process of the mind is reasoning. The definition
is as follows:
Reasoning is the mind's process of reaching a judg-
ment because of its relation to two preceding judgments.
The Classes of Reasoning. There are different
classes of reasoning depending upon the basis chosen.
Often the mind produces a judgment when it is not
at all conscious that this judgment is reached be-
cause of its relation to two preceding judgments, but
an analysis always shows that the two preceding
judgments are implied, though not in consciousness.
Thus there are two kinds of reasoning from the
standpoint of whether all three of the judgments are
in consciousness. Thus when the mind thinks This
day is rainy, it has as a rule, in consciousness only
this one judgment. An analysis shows that the two
judgments, rainy days have certain characteristics; and
this day has these characteristics; are implied, however.
114 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
Then again, the mind in reasoning examines par-
ticular objects and reasons that what is true of these
is true of the whole class; that is, it goes from the
examination of particulars to a general truth. Also
the mind may start with a general truth and reason
that what is true of the whole class must be true of
the particular objects of that class. Thus from the
standpoint of whether the mind goes from particulars
to the general or from the general to particulars
there are two classes of reasoning.
Implicit and Explicit Reasoning. On the basis of
whether the mind has in consciousness all three
judgments there are two classes of reasoning: im-
plicit, and explicit.
Implicit reasoning is the kind of reasoning in
which one or more of the judgments are not in conscious-
Explicit reasoning is the kind of reasoning in
which the mind has all the judgments in consciousness.
Inductive and Deductive Reasoning. On the basis
of whether the mind goes from the particular to the
general or from the general to the particular there
are two classes of reasoning: inductive and deductive.
Inductive reasoning is that kind of reasoning in
which the mind goes from truths of particular objects to
Ex. This object is an animal.
This object has voluntary motion.
Animals have voluntary motion.
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 115
Deductive reasoning is that kind of reasoning in
which the mind goes from general truths to truths of
Ex. Animals have voluntary motion.
This object is an animal.
This object has voluntary motion.
The Syllogism. In every act of reasoning there
are three judgments, or propositions. These three
judgments, or propositions, taken together are called
the syllogism. Thus the syllogism may be characterized
The syllogism is the formal act of reasoning con-
sisting of three judgments, or propositions.
Of the three judgments which compose the syllo-
gism the first two are called the premises,&ud the last
one, the conclusion.
There are in each syllogism also three terms: the
major term, the minor term, and the middle term. These
may be known from their position in the judgments.
The predicate of the conclusion is invariably the major
term; the subject of the conclusion, the minor term,
and the term found in both the premises but not
found in the conclusion is the middle term.
The premises are called major or minor depend-
ing upon which term is found in them, the major
term being always found in the major premise, and
the minor term, in the minor premise.
Thus in the syllogism,
This object is an animal.
116 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
This object has voluntary motion.
Animals have voluntary motion.
"have voluntary motion" is the major term; "Ani-
mals" is the minor term; and "This object" is the
middle term. Also, "Animals have voluntary motion "
is the conclusion. "This object has voluntary mo-
tion" is the major premise, and "This object is an
animal" is the minor premise.
The arrangement of the judgments in a certain
order is called a figure of the syllogism. There are
said to be three figures of the syllogism, as follows:
Animals have voluntary motion.
This object is an animal.
This object has voluntary motion.
Animals have voluntary motion.
This object has voluntary motion.
This object is an animal.
This object is an animal.
This object has voluntary motion.
Animals have voluntary motion.
The first figure of the syllogism is employed by
the mind in deduction; the second, in identification; and
the third, in induction.
Systematization. In judgment the mind grasps
the relation between ideas; in reasoning, between
judgments; and in systematization, between complete
acts of reasoning. Thus by systematization the
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 117
mind connects all the truths of plant life into a com-
plete system the science of botany; also, all the
truths of animal life into the science, zoology.
Systematization is the mind's process of grasping
the relation between complete acts of reasoning.
Intuition. To know any object completely is to
know it in both its particular and universal aspects;
that is, (1) to know it as distinct from other objects,
(2) as connected with other objects.
In the stages in the development of knowing
from sense-perception to imagination, inclusive, the
mind emphasizes the particular aspects of known
objects; but in the development of knowing from
conception to systematization, inclusive, the mind em-
phasizes the universal aspects of objects. Thus in no
stage of knowing from sense-perception to systema-
tization does the mind grasp an object with equal
emphasis upon both its particular and universal
aspects. This it does in the highest stage of know-
ing, intuition. Intuition in its fullness is thus
knowing an object completely, and is thus the end of
the development of knowing. It may be defined as
Intuition is the mind's process of implicitly grasp-
ing an object with equal emphasis upon both its particular
and universal aspects.
Intuition is rational insight.
The Distinguishing Element in the Stages of Know-
ing. By the distinguishing element in the stages of
118 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
knowing is meant that element which makes any
stage different from any other stage, and by which
any stage may be known.
The distinguishing element in sense-perception
is the interpreting the sensations; in memory, the iden-
tifying activity; in imagination, the free imaging activ-
ity of the mind; in conception, the grasping tJie class
common attributes; in definition, the synthesis of the
common truths of a class; in judgment, the grasping the
relation between ideas; in reasoning, the grasping
the relation between judgments; in systematization, the
grasping the relation among complete acts of reasoning;
in intuition, the equality of empliasis on both aspects of
an object, the particular and universal.
The Advance in the Stages of Knowing. The sen-
sation in itself is an isolated thing. In sense-percep-
tion the mind relates the sensations and grasps the
likeness and difference between them. Its advance
over the sensation is in grasping the relation between
the sensations. In original sense-perception, the least
developed kind, the mind interprets the sensations
from only one sense, that one which was evidently
designed to give sensations of one particular kind.
In the acquired sense-perception, the most developed
kind, more than one sense is involved, and thus more
relations are grasped and the process is more com-
plex more developed.
In memory, the second stage of knowing, the
mind grasps more time and. place relations than in
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 119
sense-perception. In sense-perception the mind can
deal with only present, in time and space, objects.
Thus it is a great advance to be able to think of objects
not present in either time or space.
Recognition, the lowest kind of memory, is a
very small advance over sense-perception, merely
more time relations grasped.
Remembrance of the particular is an advance
over recognition in that the object is never present
more place relations grasped.
In remembrance of the general the mind ad-
vances to the grasping of general relations. The mind
deals with particular ideas in both recognition and
remembrance of the particular, but with a general
idea in remembrance of the general.
In recollection, the highest kind of memory, the
advance is in the effort of the will involved and in the
grasping more relations in the attempt to get hold of
some associated line to suggest the missing element.
In imagination the mind advances over memory
(1) in grasping more time relations; (2) in filling out
the discrepancies of memory in its effort to remember
a thing completely; and (3) in the freedom of the ac-
In reproductive imagination, the least developed
kind, the mind advances just a little beyond memory.
The advance is mainly that of supplying the discrep-
ancies of memory.
120 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
In mechanical imagination the advance over the
reproductive is the greater freedom of the idealizing
In the creative imagination the advance is in the
greater number of relations grasped because of the
freedom of the idealizing activity of the mind.
The advance of conception over the stages of
knowing below it is that of shifting the mind's em-
phasis from tJie particular to the class common attributes
of objects. Sense-perception and imagination, the
idea-forming stages of knowing below conception,
give particular ideas; conception, also an idea- forming
stage of knowing, advances to the general idea.
The advance in definition over conception is
found in the mind's effort to make explicit what it
only vaguely grasps in conception the distinct sepa-
ration of the different classes of things.
The advance in judgment is in grasping and em-
phasizing the relation between ideas of any kind what-
ever; that is, in reaching out for more relations.
The advance in reasoning is grasping tlie relation
between entire judgments, a further broadening of the
The advance of systematization over reasoning is
in grasping the relations among complete acts of reason-
In intuition the advance is in the equal emphasis
of the mind in grasping an object in both its universal
and particular aspects. This is the most complete
THE MENTAL NATURE OF THE CHILD. 12t
knowing of an object and with it the development of
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM.
Meaning of the Term. The curriculum is the
school course of study. It is made up of the various
subjects studied in school. Thus in the primary, or
common, school the curriculum consists of reading,
writing, spelling, arithmetic, grammar, primary
language, history, geography, physiology, and in
some places music, and drawing. In the secondary,
or high, school it usually consists of algebra, and
geometry; La tin, composition, rhetoric, and literature;
botany, zoology, chemistry, physics, geology, and
astronomy; ancient history, mediaeval history, and
modern history; drawing, and music.
It is easily seen that the school curriculum is not
a fixed thing, but that it changes from time to time.
The subjects in the school curriculum taken as a
whole divide themselves into groups. There are at
any rate the following groups:
1. The language group consisting of reading,
writing, spelling, language, composition, rhetoric,
grammar, Latin, literature, German, French, etc.
2. The mathematical group consisting of arith-
metic, algebra, geometry, trigonometry, etc.
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 123
3. The natural science group consisting of physi-
ology, geography, botany, zoology, psychology, chem-
istry, physics, astronomy, geology, etc.
4. The history group consisting of ancient
history, medissval history, and modern history.
5. The art group consisting of drawing, and
music, at the least.
6. The professional group consisting of psy-
chology, methodology, paidology, etc.
Origin of the Curriculum. The function of the
school is to educate the child. But the child must
have something to study that he may get knowledge
and discipline in the process of education. Thus
there are two aspects of the thought which originated
the school curriculum: the idea of getting useful
knowledge, and the idea of getting mental discipline.
The foremost one of these ideas was the need for
useful knowledge. So it may be said that the first
felt-need which was instrumental in originating the
school curriculum was the felt-need for useful knowl-
edge. And by useful knowledge is meant knowledge
which furnishes one guidance in right living.
The second felt-need which was instrumental in
originating the school curriculum was the felt-need
for discipline; that is, for mental exercise to the end
of health and growth. It was recognized that the
mind must have exercise to maintain its health, and
also to grow.
124 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
The curriculum at one time consisted of nothing
more than reading, writing, spelling, and arithmetic.
It was called the " three r's," when it was thus sim-
ple, "readin, ritin, rithmetic," spelling being in-
cluded in "ritin."
There was a need for some subject in the
curriculum the study of which would make the
children skillful in the two following things:
1. Getting thought and feeling from pieces of
2. Communicating this thought and feeling
orally in the author's own words.
This need was the origin of reading as a subject
in the school curriculum. And the purpose of read-
ing in the school course is to satisfy this need.
Again there was a need for something in the
school course which would make the children skillful
in the art of making the correct written forms by
means of which thought and feeling are commu-
nicated. This need was the origin of spelling and
writing in the curriculum. And the purpose of
spelling and writing in the school course is to satisfy
In dealing with the world of objects the mind
needed to be skillful in measuring them. In carrying
on business transactions the things exchanged had to
be measured, and skill was needed. So there was a
need for some subject in the school course the study
of which would give the children skill in measuring.
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 125
This need brought arithmetic into the school cur-
riculum, and was thus its origin. And the purpose
of arithmetic in the schools is to make the children
skillful in measuring.
In a similar way we could trace out the origin of
every study in the school curriculum, but it will
probably be more helpful to do that under the head
The Growth of the Curriculum. As stated above
the school curriculum of the primary, or common,
school, at one time consisted barely of reading, writ-
ing, spelling, and arithmetic. But it has not remained
so. Many new subjects have been added. That is to
say, the school curriculum has grown.
It is interesting to trace out the ideas which
brought the subjects into the school curriculum as it
grew, and to compare those ideas with what these
subjects actually do for those who study them. That
is, to see whether these subjects have realized in the
lives of the children the things which they were
expected to realize.
It was seen that some subject needed to be in the
school curriculum whose study would give the pupils
the habit of using good language in communicating
their thoughts and feelings. So grammar was added
to satisfy this need, and for a long time it was ex-
pected that the study of grammar would actually
give the pupils the habit of using good language in
writing and speaking. Finally it became evident that
126 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
grammar was not doing this well enough. The need
for some subject to do this was still strongly felt. So
the next attempt to satisfy this need brought primary
language as a subject into the curriculum.
The question whether language lessons as usually
taught will satisfy this want suggests itself.
It was also felt that, since so much of life's suc-
cess and happiness depends upon the health of the
physical being, something ought to be added to
the curriculum, the study of which would give knowl-
edge valuable for guidance in maintaining the health
of the body. Thus physiology and hygiene were
added to the school curriculum to satisfy this want.
Man learns by experience and by example; that
is, by his own experiences and by the experiences of
others. He must depend upon the experiences of the
race for a large part of his knowledge. These ex-
periences of the race have been preserved in recorded
history; and these experiences thus recorded are the
heritage left by the race to humanity.
There was felt a need for some subject in the
school curriculum the study of which would bring
the child into possession of the thought and feeling
of the race as manifested in history, and this need
caused history to be added to the school curriculum.
Life of all kinds is very dependent. Plant life
depends upon heat, light, and moisture; animal life
of all kinds is dependent upon plant life and other
animal life; and the human being is dependent upon
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 127
all these things along with his dependence upon his
fellow men. This mutual dependence of life, veg-
etable, animal, and human upon one another, and
upon heat, light, and moisture has led to the wide
distribution of life over the surface of the earth.
There was a need felt for some subject whose
study would give the child a knowledge of the mutual
distribution of heat, light, moisture, relief forms,
plant life, animal life, and human life on the surface
of the earth. Geography was added to the school
curriculum to satisfy this want, and this was the
origin of geography in the curriculum.
Enriching the Curriculum. Within recent years
there has been much discussion on enriching the
school curriculum of the primary school. By en-
riching it, is meant the addition of new subjects to it
and the bringing down some subjects which were
formerly taught only in the advanced grades to the
In line with this thought literature, music, draiv-
ing, and nature study have been introduced into
many primary school curricula, and history, ge-
ography, etc. have been placed in the work of the first,,
second, third, and fourth years.
The main purpose in making this change has
been to make a school curriculum better adapted to
the child's mental development in the first three or
four years of his school life than the one composed
almost wholly of reading, writing, spelling, and
128 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
arithmetic. It was thought that the first work of
the child in school was not well adapted to his stage
of physical and mental development, and that, there-
fore, was not of a character to arouse an enduring,
drawing interest in school work. So the need for
work more interesting to the child than the formal
work in reading, writing, spelling, and number, is
largely the thing which has produced these changes
in the curriculum.
A Rational Curriculum. The school curriculum
has been criticised on the ground that it is not ra-
tional; that is, it is not reasonable. The question,
What is a rational school curriculum? at once suggests
itself. Let us study this question systematically for
All would no doubt agree that that school cur-
riculum is the most reasonable which is best adapted
to the needs of the learner's life. And all would also
agree that that school curriculum which wastes the
learner's time and breaks down his health is not a
reasonable one. Then if in some way it can be de-
termined what school curriculum is best adapted to
the learner's life, it may be known what a rational
school curriculum is.
In order to proceed in a systematic study of the
curriculum it is necessary to rethink the purpose of
the educating process.
The Purpose of Education. Herbert Spencer, it
be remembered, says the purpose of education
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 129
is complete living. And there is unanimity of opinion
among thinking people everywhere on this point.
Certainly any work in the educating process is to be
regarded as good or poor accordingly as it helps
much or little in right living. The evidence that
people generally estimate the value of any subject in
the school curriculum in terms of living is, that when
any one wants to show the value of any school sub-
ject, he attempts to show how it helps in life. Thus
the teacher of French, when he wishes to show the
value of the study of French, always does it in terms
of life; the German teacher, and the Latin teacher
endeavor to show the use of German and Latin in
It was previously seen that "complete living**
means the following: 1. Treating the body right.
2. Treating the mind right. 3. Managing one's
business right. 4. Rearing a family right. 5.
Behaving right as a citizen. 6. Spending one's
leisure time right.
The Test. The only rational mode of judging the
value of any school curriculum is to judge to what
degree it discharges the function of preparing for
right living. The test is as follows : Any subject is
valuable in the school curriculum just to the degree to
which it helps in right living.
The First Step in Applying the Test. The first step
in applying this test to the school curriculum is to
classify, in order of importance, the lines of activity
130 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
which make up human life. These are as follows: 1.
Those activities put forth in direct self-preservation.
2. Those activities put forth in indirect self-preser-
vation. 3. Those activities put forth in rearing a
family. 4. Those activities put forth in performing'
the duties of citizenship. 5. Those activities put
forth in spending one's leisure time.
The Order of Importance of These Lines. A little
study shows that these lines of activities have been
arranged in the order of decreasing importance. The
activities put forth in direct self-preservation those
in getting out of the way of objects which would in-
jure, avoiding danger, eating, drinking, protecting
ourselves, etc. are first in importance. If one were
as ignorant as an infant of his environment, he would
lose his life in less than a day, unless he had some
one to care for him. And, since absolute ignorance
of all other things would not bring death so quickly,
those activities spent in direct self-preservation and
that knowledge which furnishes guidance for these
activities are of foremost importance.
The activities spent in indirect self-preservation
those activities in securing food, clothing, and shelter
are second in importance. That these activities
precede in importance those put forth hi rearing
families may be seen from the fact that self -main-
tenance makes possible those activities employed in
rearing families. Without self -maintenance first
there could be no family life. Thus the activities put
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 131
forth in indirect self-preservation are second in im-
portance only to those needful in direct self-preser-
No social life would be possible without the
family. The family is the most fundamental social
institution, and the rearing of children alone makes
possible the church, state, etc. Then those activities
employed in bringing up children are more important
than those spent in performing the duties of citizen-
Again the goodness of society as a whole depends
upon the goodness of those individuals who compose
it, and the quality of the individuals depends largely
upon the family training. Therefore those activities
put forth hi rearing a family are third in importance.
Fourth in importance are those activities put
forth in fulfilling one's duties as a citizen. This ap-
pears from the fact that of all the lines of activities
making up life, those used in spending leisure time
could be best left out of life. Also, the various forms
of pleasurable activities which fill up leisure hours
presuppose social institutions. No great degree of
development of these pleasurable occupations is
possible without well established social institutions.
Fifth and last in the lines of activities which
make human life are the activities spent in leisure
The Eatlonal Order of Education. From the fore-
going, the following is seen to be the rational order
132 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
of education: 1. That education which prepares for
direct self-preservation. 2. That education which
prepares for indirect self-preservation. 3. That
education which prepares for parenthood, and the
bringing up of a family. 4. That education which
prepares one for the duties of citizenship. 5. That
education which prepares for spending right one's
While there may be particular exceptions and
modifications of this order in the lives of some indi-
viduals, yet there remain these marked divisions, and
they subordinate one another substantially as indi-
The Second Step in Applying the Test. The second
step in applying the test is to classify knowledge in
the order of its importance.
Not all knowledge is of equal value to the human
race. Some may have a vital bearing upon all human
life for all time; some may touch the lives of only a
few for only a brief time; and some may be so re-
motely related to human life as to have almost no
bearing upon it. Accordingly knowledge has been
classified as follows: 1. Knowledge of intrinsic
value. 2. Knowledge of quasi-intrinsic value. 3.
Knowledge of conventional value.
Knowledge of intrinsic value is that knowledge
which bears upon the life of all mankind throughout
all time. The knowledge that chlorine is a disin-
fectant; that tuberculosis is a disease caused by a
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 133
germ; that every thought or feeling one has burns
away some of his brain material, and scientific knowl-
edge in general, is knowledge of intrinsic value.
These truths will have a bearing on human conduct
for all time.
The extra knowledge of the English language
which the study of Greek and Latin gives is knowl-
edge of quasi-intrinsic value. It has a value to a part
of humanity for a part of time, but is not of value to
all mankind for all time.
Knowledge of conventional value is simply
fashionable knowledge. Gossip, neighborhood and
national, much of Greek and Latin taught in school,
and some parts of history are knowledge of only con-
ventional value. Much that is taught in the subjects
above mentioned scarcely has the remotest bearing
upon human activities. It is fashionable to learn
such things, and so people go on studying them with-
out ever having thought out what bearing they really
have on human life.
Thus in estimating the value of knowledge,
knowledge of intrinsic value is of first importance.
The Value of Learning. The process of learning
is valuable from two points of view. First, knowledge
is obtained which furnishes guidance in human con-
duct. Secondly, the mind gets healthful exercise in
its efforts to learn. The mind develops by exercise;
that is, it learns to do by doing. The exercise of the
mind to the end of maintaining its health, and develop-
134 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
ing its strength is what is called mental discipline.
Thus any learning has two values: 1. A knowledge-
giving value. 2. A disciplinary value.
Thoughts to Be Kept in Mind. In the further
study of the school curriculum, in order to system-
atize the study, the following thoughts should be kept
1. Life is divided into several lines of activity of
2. Knowledge is of three kinds according to its
worth: a. Knowledge of intrinsic value, b. Knowl-
edge of quasi-intrinsic value, c. Knowledge of
3. Learning always has two values: a. A
knowledge-giving value, b. A disciplinary value.
Disciplinary Value and Knowledge -giving Value
Not Antagonistic. There is an error current to a
large extent that some subjects are needed in the
school curriculum because they have an excellent
disciplinary value, even though their study does not
give knowledge of much use in guiding one in right
living; and another aspect of the same error is, that
some subjects are needed in the school curriculum
because of the useful knowledge their pursuit gives,
even though their study does not furnish good mental
This error in its two aspects has entered entirely
too largely into the considerations in making school
curricula in the past. It is quite possible that those
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 135
subjects whose pursuit gives knowledge the most
useful for guidance in right living are the very same
ones whose pursuit gives the best discipline. And
there is no lack of subjects to make a curriculum
which will give the most valuable knowledge and at
the same time give the very best discipline. Human
life is too short to study one set of subjects for valu-
able knowledge alone, and to study another set of
subjects for discipline alone.
In the solution of any educational problem hints
usually may be had from nature. Everywhere in
nature we find capacities developed by performing
the functions which it is their office to perform, and
not by some exercise artificially arranged to fit them
for the performance of these duties. The hunter ac-
quires the discipline which makes him a successful
hunter only by the pursuit of game. The highest de-
velopment of a power always results from the exercise
in the work which the conditions of life require of it.
In the light of these truths, the acquisition ivhich
gives the most valuable knowledge must at the same time
furnish the very best discipline.
Making discipline almost the entire object in
teaching ' 'is responsible for a sort of mediaeval dia-
lectics and fruitless beating of the air in teaching
which passes as superfine method. It is Fichte's
idealism and subjectivity run mad."
Direct Self-preservation. The knowledge which
gives guidance in direct self-preservation, too im-
136 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
portant to be left to be taught in school, Nature has
taken into her own hands to teach. She is teaching
the child his daily lessons in direct self-preservation
by means of the falls, bruises, scratches, cuts, burns,
and pains which befall him every day in his early
life. Mother Nature teaches the lesson well that,
when any of the laws of life are violated, pain and
misery are the inevitable result.
Not being aware of all the safeguards which
nature has furnished us, we often violate her laws.
What subjects have we in the school curriculum
whose pursuit will furnish knowledge for guidance
hi these activities? The answer to this question is, we
have physiology and hygiene. The pursuit of these
subjects gives the knowledge that one's physical
sensations and desires cold, heat, fatigue, hunger,
thirst, etc. are promptings which, if obeyed, would
to a large extent provide for direct self-preservation.
But so great an ignorance is there of the laws of life
that men do not appreciate fully enough that the
sensations are the natural guides hi direct self-pres-
Physiology and hygiene have it as their field of
work to teach a better general knowledge of the laws
of physical life and a fuller appreciation of the ne-
cessity and momentous importance of their obedience.
No one will doubt the value of physiology and
hygiene in the school curriculum who will consider
the pain, the weariness, the gloom, the waste of time
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 137
and money entailed, and "how greatly ill-health
hinders the discharge of all duties, makes business
often impossible and always more difficult; produces
an irritability fatal to the right management of chil-
dren; puts the function of citizenship out of the
question; and makes amusement a bore. Is it not
clear that the physical sins, partly our forefathers*
and partly our own, which produce this ill-health,
deduct more from complete living than any thing
else, and to a great extent make life a failure and a
burden instead of a benefaction and a pleasure?"
And it may further be added that the average
length of human life is, by the violation of these
physical laws, largely cut short.
Physiology and hygiene may thus be seen to
occupy a dignified and exalted position in the school
curriculum. And this is a fact which should be seen
and appreciated by every teacher that these sciences
may be taught conscientiously and well.
Indirect Self-preservation. The knowledge which
furnishes guidance in indirect self-preservation is
that which guides in making a living in obtaining
food, clothing, and shelter. All persons are agreed
upon the importance of such knowledge; and indeed,
by too many it is regarded as the sole or main object
of education. While every one is agreed that knowl-
edge which iurnishes guidance in making a living is
of high importance, yet few have systematically
thought out just what knowledge will best do this.
138 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
In order to study this question to the best ad-
vantage, it is necessary to notice the main things in
which men who work are employed.
What Things Men Are Employed in. The main
lines hi which men who work for a living are employed
are as follows:
1. The production of commodities.
2. The preparation of commodities.
3. The distribution of commodities.
By the prpduction jot commodities is meant the
production of corn, wheat, hay, oats, beef, pork, coal,
iron, wool, flax, poultry, fruit, lumber, leather, silk,
cotton, linen, hemp, and a large number of other
The preparation of commodities means changing
them into a fit condition for consumption, or use. It
refers mainly to manufacturing; as the manufacture
of machinery, food, clothing, etc.
Distribution refers to sending such things to the
points of consumption.
Now, the question is, What knowledge gives
the greatest guidance in these three lines of activities?
It is evident that commodities could not be dis-
tributed without a knowledge of reading, writing,
spelling, and arithmetic. Distribution requires
railroads, canals, bridges, docks, and the dredging of
rivers; locomotives, cars, steamboats, and steam-
ships. But the knowledge which guides in the
construction of these is a knowledge of mathematics,
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 139
physics, chemistry, and mechanics. Thus the knowl-
edge which gives guidance in the distribution of
commodities is, directly, mathematics, physics,
chemistry, and mechanics; and indirectly, reading,
writing, arithmetic, and spelling.
That knowledge which guides in the preparation
of commodities is, again, directly, a knowledge of
chemistry, physics, mathematics, and mechanics;
and indirectly, reading, writing, spelling, and arith-
That knowledge which gives guidance in the
production of commodities is, directly, chemistry,
physics, geology, zoology, botany, agriculture, horti-
culture, and bacteriology; and indirectly, reading,
writing, spelling, and arithmetic.
Thus it is seen that subjects whose study
furnishes knowledge which gives guidance in both
direct and indirect self-preservation directly are al-
most wholly science subjects.
The Rearing of a Family. One is led to wonder,
when he thinks of our school curriculum, whether
this division of human activities is to be considered of
so little importance that no systematic knowledge is
needed to furnish guidance for them.
"If by some strange chance not a vestige of us
descended to the remote future save a pile of our
school books or some college examination papers, we
may imagine how puzzled an antiquary of the period
would be on finding in them no indications that the
140 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
learners were ever likely to be parents. This must
have been the curriculum for their celibates,' we may
fancy him concluding. 'I perceive here an elaborate
preparation for many things: especially for reading
the books of extinct nations and coexisting nations
from which indeed it seems that these people had
very little worth reading in their own tongue; but I
find no reference whatever to the bringing up of
children. They could not have been so absurd as to
omit all training for this gravest of responsibilities.
Evidently then, this was the school course of one of
their monastic orders.' "
There are however in the school curriculum
physiology and hygiene whose pursuit will give
knowledge which furnishes guidance in bringing up
children, in so far as the laws of their bodies are
concerned. But not enough emphasis is placed upon
these subjects. The value of the knowledge furnished
by their study has not yet been sufficiently appre-
"To tens of thousands that are killed, add
hundreds of thousands that survive with feeble con-
stitutions, and millions that grow up with constitu-
tions not as strong as they should be; and you will
have some idea of the curse inflicted on their off-
spring by parents ignorant of the laws of life."
The child not only has a physical nature, but he
has also a moral and intellectual nature. For guid-
ance in the moral and intellectual training of children
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 141
there is almost nothing in the average school cur-
riculum whose study gives the requisite knowledge.
Psychology and child study are the subjects
whose pursuit gives the knowledge most valuable for
guidance in these activities. But few schools have
these subjects in their curricula at present, and
probably will not for many years yet.
"Be this as it may, however, here are the indis-
putable facts: that the development of children in
mind and body rigorously obeys certain laws; that
unless these laws are in some degree conformed to
by parents, death is inevitable; that unless they are
in a great degree conformed to, there must result
serious physical and mental defects; and that only
when they are completely conformed to, can a per-
fect maturity be reached."
Man's Duties as a Citizen. When one asks him-
self what subjects there are in the school curriculum
the pursuit of which furnishes guidance in one's
duties as a citizen, his mind turns to history, for it
has been asserted over and over again that the study
of history makes good citizens. But when one stops
to think whether history, as usually taught, does
especially make good citizens, it does not seem very
It is safe to say that if history were properly
taught, it would give a stock of knowledge valuable
for guidance in citizenship. But in order that history
may give this guidance it must not be taught merely
142 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
as a record of events; neither must it be taught as
isolated events, nor must all the time of teaching be
spent on the state as an institution of society. To
accomplish this desired result history must be
studied as the struggle of the race in its effort for higher
life. This struggle must be seen to have been one in
all the institutions of society the family, the school,
the church, industrial life, and the state. It must be
seen, too, that in human action there is a seed-time, a
period of growth, and a fruitage.
But as history is often taught it certainly is
worth little for guidance in citizenship.
Literature, if well taught, is valuable for guidance
in this line of activities.
The best interpretation of both history and liter-
ature requires a knowledge of psychology. This is
evident from the following: If one knew absolutely
nothing about the human mind, he could not interpret
history or literature at all. And certainly one who
has an organized, systematic knowledge of psychology
will interpret better than one who has only a frag-
mentary, unorganized knowledge of it.
"Without an acquaintance with the general truths
of biology and psychology, rational interpretation of
social phenomena is impossible. " "All social phe-
nomena are phenomena of life are ultimately de-
pendent upon the laws of life and can be understood
only when the laws of life are understood. "
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 14&
Sociology is the best subject in the school cur-
riculum to furnish knowledge valuable for guidance
in the duties of citizenship, and an understanding of
sociology is absolutely dependent upon a knowledge
Thus, we see again that for knowledge to furnish
guidance in this fourth division of human activities,,
we are largely dependent upon science.
Spending Leisure Time. A life with no leisure
time is not most to be desired, for it is almost sure
to become one of drudgery. All should have some
leisure time and should have proper habits of spend-
ing it. This time should be spent in such a way that
it will furnish recreation and amusement, and at the
same time be not degrading, but uplifting in its ef-
fects. If one must spend his leisure time in such a,
way as to degrade himself, he would be benefitted by
not having any to spend.
This time could be spent in the enjoyment of
Nature; in the enjoyment of literature; in the enjoy-
ment of fine arts architecture, sculpture, music,
painting, and poetry and in the companionship of
one's friends, and so spent would be elevating, and
Those subjects which will put one in the right
attitude of mind for the enjoyment of nature are those
subjects which treat of nature. That is to say, they
are the natural sciences botany, zoology, geology*
astronomy, chemistry, and physics.
144 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
That subject which gives knowledge valuable for
guidance in enjoying literature is directly the school
subject, literature. And to this should be added
psychology, which aids largely in the interpretation
Music, now in many school courses is the subject
which gives ability to enjoy music.
In the average school curriculum there is nothing
which directly prepares one to enjoy architecture,
sculpture, and painting.
For the enjoyment of poetry, literature, reading,
and psychology prepare one.
Greek and Latin. Prom a systematic study of
the school curriculum one wonders why so much time
is still spent on Greek and Latin in our schools. It
cannot be because they give knowledge valuable to
any large extent for guidance in living. In fact, they
have small claim to a place in the school curriculum
because of the valuable knowledge their pursuit fur-
nishes. Their claim to a place in the curriculum
rests upon the idea that they are good disciplinary
It has been shown that those subjects which
furnish the most valuable knowledge also furnish the
best discipline. Therefore, Greek and Latin are
over-rated as disciplinary subjects, too. It has also
been seen that it never pays best to study any sub-
ject merely for discipline when there are so many
subjects the mastery of which furnishes the best
discipline and valuable knowledge, too.
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 145
The Most Valuable Knowledge. A systematic
study of the school curriculum points indubitably to
the fact that the most valuable group of subjects in
the school curriculum is the science group; the most
valuable from both the valuable knowledge stand-
point, and the disciplinary standpoint.
Science has liberated humanity from the bondage
of superstition to a large extent. Science has tun-
neled mountains, bridged rivers, and spanned
continents. Science has harnessed waterfalls to do
man's bidding. Science has tamed the lightning to
minister to man's wants. Science has prevented
plagues, stamped out zymotic diseases, and made it
possible for man to inhabit almost every part of the
earth. In short, science has been the vitalizing force
which has done more to ameliorate the condition of
mankind than all other influences combined. Science
has enfranchised the human race physically, intel-
lectually, aesthetically, socially, morally, and re-
Child Study and the Curriculum. We will not lose
sight of the fact that we started out to see whether
our school curriculum is a rational one or not. And
in the pursuit of the solution of this problem it has
been found out that much time is wasted in school in
the pursuit of subjects not the most valuable.
There is also another phase of this subject which
has an important bearing upon the rationality of the
school curriculum. The question is, Are the subjects
146 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
in the school course taught at the time in the child's
life when they are best adapted to his stage of de-
velopment? A curriculum can not truthfully be said
to be rational, if the various subjects are not taught
at the period in the life of the learner when they may
best be taught. For instance, no one would say a
school curriculum which provides the study of
algebra, of psychology, or of logic for the child of six
Much systematic, painstaking, and exact study
has recently been given to children in the search for
the solution of this problem along with many others.
The consensus of opinion on this question is pretty
accurately stated in the following quotation:
Changes in the Curriculum Suggested by Child
Study. "Our increasing knowledge of the child's
mind, his muscular and nervous system, and his
special senses points indubitably to the conclusion
that reading and writing are subjects which do not
belong to the early years of school life, but to a later
period, and that other subjects now studied later are
better adapted to this early stage of development.
What is thus indicated of reading and writing may be
affirmed also of drawing and arithmetic. "
The physiological and psychological reasons for
the above statement can not be discussed here. Suf-
fice it to say that the study of these things early in
school life produces nervous diseases, and arrested
development; also, diseases of the sense organs,
THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM. 147
particularly of the eyes. There is, too, thus a great
loss of time and energy, and bad mental habits are
Child study undoubtedly points to the fact that
nature study, oral history , oral literature, and the free
activity of the larger movements of the body, as in
manual training, should constitute the school cur-
riculum for about the first four years of the child's
school life, and that reading, writing, spelling, draw-
ing, and arithmetic should come later.
So the answer derived from our study of the
school curriculum is, that we certainly have not yet a
wholly rational school curriculum.
Importance of the Teacher. From the standpoint
of the purpose of the school the learner is the most
important element of the school. But from another
point of view the teacher seems to be the most im-
portant element of the school. It is true that the
school exists for the learner, and without him there
would be no need for the teacher, school house, cur-
riculum, or school officers. The development in the
child's life is the end to be attained, and all parts and
processes of school work are means to this end. The
end is always more important than the means in all
rational processes. Thus the teacher stands in re-
lation to the development in the life of the learner as
means to end.
When the teacher is considered as the element in
the school upon which its successful operation most
depends, he seems the most important element in the
There is much truth in the statement, "As the
teacher is, so will be the school. " He is the life-giving
element in the school. If the teacher is properly
qualified, loves his work, and has a sympathetic in-
THE TEACHER. 149
sight into the lives of his pupils, hardly any thing can
make his school a failure.
Duties of the Teacher. The duties of the teacher
are, indeed, many. He must poke the fire, sweep
the floor, keep proper ventilation, oversee the care of
school grounds, and. vigilantly watch school property;
tie up cut fingers, doctor bruised heads and limbs,
soothe the sorrows of some, and rejoice in the joy of
others; encourage the brave, generous, and true, and
frown upon the cowardly, selfish, and deceitful. He
must assign lessons, hear recitations, correct the
wayward, and encourage the good of all kinds.
From such an inventory of the teacher's duties it
seems at first sight that nothing can be got but con-
fusion. A little thought, however, will show that
these duties may readily be divided into two classes :
1. Governing. 2. Teaching.
Governing. Governing is the work of the teacher in
keeping the organization running with the least possible
friction. A common error made by the teacher in
school government is in thinking that he is a legislator
as well as an executive. He thinks this and so acts
as to lead his students to think it. No worse mistake
than this can be made in school government. In-
stead of the teacher's thinking that he is a legislator
and that the laws of the school originate in him, he
should understand that the laws of the school are in-
herent in the organization itself. The pupils should
be led by the conduct of the teacher to appreciate
this fact, too, in so far as they are able to do so.
150 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
The teacher is governor in that it is his duty to
call attention to the laws of the school, explain them,
and execute them.
Teaching. Teaching is the work of the teacher in
leading the learner into those experiences which con-
stantly make him a little more wise and virtuous.
From this study of teaching it is easy to deduce
the following definition of a teacher:
A teacher is one who stimulates the learner to ex-
periences which he would not have without that one's
The teacher's duties in teaching are both positive
Positive Duties. Every experience the learner
has affects him permanently to some degree. Some
organize him toward a higher destiny and some,
toward a lower. While the child is naturally born
with capacities for becoming good, he is also born with
capacities for becoming bad.
"The child inherits not only the good proclivities
and propensities of his long line of ancestors, but he
inherits also bad feelings and emotions. His heart is
not altogether a good heart; it overflows not only in
goodness but also at times more or less frequent,
in selfishness, rancor, bitterness, cowardliness; in
short in excesses and defects of various kinds. ''
From the positive side the teacher is to guide the
child in the development of all that is good in his
nature, and in the acquisition of knowledge which
THE TEACHER. 151
will furnish guidance in right living. Thus the
teacher's positive duties are to arouse the experiences
in the life of the child which constantly lift him to a
higher plane of living. Such experiences are along
six lines: physical, intellectual, aesthetic, social, moral,
and religious. And this is what it means to teach
considered from the positive side. Thus, teaching is
arousing those experiences physical, intellectual, aes-
thetic, social, moral, and religious in the life of the
learner to the end that he may continuously grow into a
Negative Duties. The teacher's negative duties
in teaching consist in eliminating the evil tendencies
from the child's nature. The teacher is not to lose
sight of the fact that the tendencies, propensities,
and proclivities for wrong doing born in the child,
inherited from his long line of ancestors must be
Some teachers make a mistake by thinking the
child is naturally good. The child is not moral, neither
is he immoral, but he is unmoral; but he may easily
develop into an immoral individual, if surrounded by
an immoral environment. Whatever immoral tend-
encies he has are to be suppressed. But these
characteristics can not ;be effectively suppressed in
the life of the child by simply attempting to root
them out without supplying their places with some-
thing. That is to say, education can not be alone
negative nor even largely negative. The only safe
152 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
plan is to eliminate the bad by building up the good
in its place. No teacher or parent will succeed well
in educating his children, who always has his eye
fixed on the things which the children ought not to
do. He should supply the good to take the place of
the bad. In teaching, as in algebra, a good way to
get rid of the undesirable element is to eliminate it
Characteristics of the Teacher. In studying the
characteristics of a teacher one is impressed, at
the start, with the fact that there are some qualities
which the teacher must have, if he teaches success-
fully at all, and that there are other desirable qualities
which not all can possess. Of the first class scholar-
ship is an example, and of the second class good health
and fine native ability are examples. The first class
of characteristics may be called necessary character-
istics; the second may be called supplementary char-
Without the first set the teacher must be a
failure. The second set, while not absolutely neces-
sary to the success of a teacher, are desirable and
facilitate the ease with which success is attained.
Necessary CJiaracteristics. As above stated, these
are absolutely necessary to any marked degree of
success on the part of the teacher, and are as follows:
1. Strong moral character. 2. Scholarship. 3.
Professional preparation. 4. Energetic, student's
habits. 5. The habit of daily preparation. 6. Love
THE TEACHER. 155
of occupation. 7. Sympathy with children. We
will study these somewhat in detail.
Strong Moral Character. "The teacher should be
an example, in person and conduct, of what he re-
quires of his pupils. " This is just as true to-day as
when said by Comenius two hundred and fifty years
ago. Since the purpose of the school and the aim of
education is to make wise and virtuous men and women,
no influence which does not contribute to that end
should ever be brought to bear upon the child. And
since we are better understanding the power of sug-
gestion, we are beginning to realize what a powerful
influence on the life of the children the example of
the teacher has. Slovenly habits of thought; slang,
impure English, profanity, by- words; smoking, chew-
ing tobacco; dishonesty, injustice, and selfishness all
impress the life of the child and tend to reproduce
themselves in him. No teacher who uses tobacco
smokes or chews who is careless of his English, or
who in any way shows himself dishonest or cowardly
can be as good a man as he would be without those
traits, and since anything which detracts from man-
hood detracts from the teacher, it is equally true that
he can not be as good a teacher as he would be with-
out those traits.
But while all can agree on the desirability of
strong moral character for the teacher, to talk of it
in the abstract without knowing very definitely what
it means is not sufficiently helpful. An analysis will
154 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
how that, at the least, the following elements enter
into moral character: 1. Knowledge of right and
wrong. 2. Truthfulness. 3. Honesty. 4. Justness.
5. Habits of activity. 6. Self-control.
Knowledge of Right and Wrong. In order for one
to have strong moral character, he must have the
.ability to think out the right and wrong in human
activity. A man's motive may be good and the ac-
tivity prompted by that motive be very bad. To say
that a man may have strong moral character and be
at the same time ignorant concerning the common
laws of life and daily human actions is to place a
premium on ignorance. An ignoramus can not be
a man of strong moral character.
To hold that an act is good provided it is done
with good intentions, notwithstanding much human
misery and unhappiness result from it is certainly a
doctrine very pernicious and baneful in its results.
Truthfulness. It seems so evident that truthful-
ness is an element of morality that no study is needed
to prove it. There is one aspect of this question
which enters largely into the work of the teacher.
Teachers have feared to say "I don't know," lest
pupils would lose confidence in their ability. It does
not necessarily follow that, if the teacher honestly
acknowledges that he does not know, when such is
the case, the pupils will lose confidence in his ability.
If it were so, it would still be a question whether it is
not preferable for students to lose confidence in one's
THE TEACHER. 155
ability than to lose confidence in one's truthfulness.
But students are, as a rule, reasonable. They do not
expect that the teacher will never make a mistake,
nor that he will know the correct answer to every
question that arises. They further know that they
have no right to expect so much, but they also know
that they have a right to expect the teacher to be
Honesty. Honesty and truthfulness seem much
the same thing, as elements of character. They how-
ever emphasize different aspects of moral character.
Truthfulness refers to the representation of things
as they are, and so refers to one's representing
things thus. Honesty refers to uprightness in the
actions of one person to another. In honesty ques-
tions of advantage and disadvantage are involved.
There are many ways in which a teacher's honesty is
involved in school work. The student's instinct for
truth and honesty will assert itself to the extent that
he will appreciate these qualities in the teacher. And
pupils are quick to detect these characteristics as
ivell as their opposites.
It is a great misfortune for students to be under
the influence of a teacher who is untruthful and dis-
honest. Their opportunities for receiving good from
such a teacher are greatly lessened. Even when the
teacher endeavors honestly to benefit his students,
his influence will lack force and effectiveness.
.Students will not hear what he says when they know
what he is.
156 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
"How can I hear what you say, when what you
are is thundering in my ear."
"The teacher can not be a signboard. He must
go the way he points. "
Justness. In school work, justness does not
mean that all students must be treated alike. That
all students must be treated alike is a traditional
maxim of school which has been pernicious and evil
in its effects. This maxim usually refers to correc-
tions and rewards. Scarcely any one would think
that in teaching all are to be taught in the same way,
but in the matter of corrections and rewards the idea
prevails to a greater or less extent that all students
are to be treated in the same way. In the matter of
being just in rewards and corrections the individual
differences of children must be taken into considera-
tion as well as in the teaching act. No two children
respond to stimulus just in the same way nor in the
It requires some firmness on the part of the
teacher to be just. The teacher may err in two ways
in matters of justness: 1. He may err because of
kindness. 2. He may err from a hypercritical
Too often the teacher because of kindness fails to
have the student see just what his paper or recitation
is worth. A paper graded on the scale of a hundred
is marked seventy-five per cent, when justice would
show it to be worth no more than thirty or forty per
THE TEACHER. 157
cent. A recitation worth little or nothing is smoothed
over and patched up by the teacher till the pupil is
deceived into believing that he has really done some-
Justice may at times seem severe, but its very
severity is educative in a high degree. Justice after
a period of growth always brings a fruitage much to
be desired. The teacher's profession is in need of
teachers with courage to give children credit for just
what they merit, no more and no less.
Habits of Activity. No one can be a sluggard and
be a moral man. Morality means activity. There
are people who think that if one does no active harm
he is entitled to be called good. That is to say, some
hold that activity is not a necessary element of good-
ness in a man. A little study, however, shows the
fallacy of this view. If one asks himself the question,
"What is a good lead pencil?" or "What is a good
knife?" and stops to think out the answer, he will find
that he will reach the conclusion that the lead pencil
or knife is good which does its work well. That is,
goodness refers to the ability or adaptability of a
thing to do its work. And this is the meaning of
goodness as generally understood concerning all
things except man. That men are an exception to
this general truth is not reasonable.
Also, if a man who does neither active good nor
bad and so does nothing is good, the question, "What
is he good for?" suggests at once the answer, "good-
158 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
Under normal circumstances, a strong moral
character means a life of intense activity.
The teacher's profession has no need of teachers
who find nothing to do after 4:00 P. M. and before
8:30 A. M., and least of all have our children need for
Self-control. It seems unnecessary to emphasize
the fact that self-control is an element of morality.
A brief study of the lines of self-control is, however,
of some help.
For our purpose here, self-control may be divided
into the following aspects:
1. Control of the appetites.
2. Control of one's actions.
3. Control of one's language.
No person who lets his appetites go without
restraint can be a moral person. "No heart is so
pure, no soul is so noble, that physical appetite long
unrestrained does not corrupt. Every mother has it
in her power to form the tastes and appetites of her
children. They are always formed, but the process
of re-forming is frequently a heart-breaking failure."
The teacher may have an influence in this forming of
tastes and appetites, but not with much effect until
he has correctly formed his own.
No teacher succeeds well who has not learned to
control his actions in all aspects of school work.
Many a teacher has lost his opportunities for doing
good in a school by lack of ability to act calmly and
THE TEACHER. 159 5
reasonably under trying circumstances. A success-
ful teacher must guard his actions not only under
trying circumstances, but all the time, even under
the most usual circumstances.
Controlling one's language is certainly an element,
of moral character under any consideration, but the
control of the teacher's language is an element of
great importance in successful teaching. A word of
encouragement here, a kind word there; a word
of approval for this effort, a word of disapproval for
lack of effort; a mild, pleasing tone at all times; such,,
other things equal, are among the important elements,
that go to make the ideal teacher. Sarcasm, irony,
blustering, boisterous tones keyed to a high pitch are
among the most disorganizing attributes a teacher
Scholarship. That a teacher must possess schol-
arship to teach at all is unquestioned. No one can
teach what he does not know, and it is equally true
that no one can teach well what he does not know
well. Nothing gives more confidence to the teacher,
and nothing is more inspiring to the pupils than ta
know that the teacher is master of his subject.
A school subject is a group of facts, these facts hav-
ing a relation peculiar to that subject alone. The teacher
who is master of his subject not only sees these facts,
but he sees the relation of these facts to each other
and to the subject as a whole. With such a knowledge
of his subject the teacher sees the end from the be-
160 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
ginning; he is able to distinguish the important from
the unimportant, and to organize his work. A lack
of scholarship makes the teacher a slave to the text-
book, instead of being, as he should be, a source of
self -directive energy in the subject.
It is a very deplorable set of conditions which
compels teachers to teach subjects about which they
know barely enough to make a grade for license.
First class teaching can never be done under such
Professional Preparation. Professional prepara-
tion from the teacher 's point of view means a mastery
to a greater or less extent of those subjects which
will furnish peculiar guidance to the teacher in his
actual work in the schoolroom. Everyone who enters
the profession of medicine, law, or the ministry rec-
ognizes the need of study which will give guidance in
his special work. That is to say, men of those pro-
fessions recognize the need of special preparation for
professional work. This is not less true in the
teacher's work than in the other professions. A brief
study shows that the teacher's professional prepa-
ration consists in general of the following:
1. A systematic knowledge of the laws of life,
both physical and mental.
2. A knowledge of the purpose of education.
3. A knowledge of current, approved methods.
4. Practice in the art of teaching.
A short study of each of these is beneficial.
THE TEACHER. 161
A Knowledge of the Laivs of Life. The laws of life
are those truths of the body and the mind which all
physical and mental growth obeys during life. They
are of two general classes: physical and mental. The
teacher learns physical laws in the study of physi-
ology and hygiene; and the mental laws are to be
learned in the study of psychology.
The question before us for study is, Must the most
successful teacher have a scientific knowledge of psychol-
ogy, physiology, and hygiene? We can study this
question in the two following ways:
1. We can depend upon our own ability to think
it out correctly.
2. We can study what our foremost educational
thinkers have thought about it.
What Our Own Study Shoivs. If the teacher knew
absolutely nothing of the laws of life, he could not
teach school a day, an hour, or even a minute. He
could not tell whether beef or arsenic would be food;
whether a child would be comfortable in an atmos-
phere at the freezing point or at the boiling point;
whether he would be more comfortable sitting
down, running, or standing on his head; nor could he
decide on any hygienic or physiological question
whatever concerning the child's welfare. Neither
could he tell how, when, or why to teach any point of
knowledge. He would not know whether to begin
the study of algebra, logic, or reading with the child
of six or with the child of sixteen. Without some
162 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
knowledge of the laws of life, the teacher could not
(1) provide a suitable course of study; (2) arrange his
school into classes; (3) assign lessons suitable to
his classes; (4) interpret his pupils' conduct; (5)
know whether his pupils grasp the meaning of the
lesson. In short, he could not teach at all.
Therefore, to teach school at all a teacher must
know something of physiology, hygiene, and psychology.
Everyone of course knows something of these sub-
jects, but the knowledge of most is what is called
ordinary knoivledge, and not scientific Tcnoivledge. An
examination of ordinary knowledge shows it to be
possessed of the following qualities: it is incomplete,
fragmentary, unorganized, contains many partial truths,
has error intermingled with the truth, and is not usable
to as high degree as it should be.
Scientific knowledge is found to be possessed of
the following qualities: it is more complete, more con-
nected, better organized, contains more whole truths,
has the error eliminated to a large degree, and is
usable to a large extent.
Now, the question is, Which will help the teacher
more in teaching, the ordinary knowledge or the
scientific knowledge of physiology, hygiene, and
Everyone knows something of science, the knowl-
edge having been picked up in fragments from ex-
perience, but it is not this knowledge which has most
caused the progress of the world. The knowledge
THE TEACHER. 163
which has caused civilization to move forward with
such strides in the present century has been that
which was scientific.
Thus the question we started out to study re-
duces itself to the following: First, a teacher must
have some knowledge of physiology, hygiene, and
psychology to teach at all. Secondly, the teacher
through everyday experience may acquire an ordi-
nary knowledge of these subjects. Thirdly, the
teacher may acquire through study a scientific
knowledge of these subjects. Fourthly, scientific
knowledge is the most valuable for guidance. Fifthly,
the teacher should have the scientific knowledge of
physiology, hygiene, and psychology. Sixthly, the
most successful teacher must be an earnest student of
physiology, hygiene, and psychology.
Thoughts of Teachers. There are two classes of
teachers who oppose the study of psychology as a
part of the teacher's professional preparation. Those
of the first class know something of psychology only
as an abstract science, not as an applied science.
This class sees nothing in psychology but discipline,
because to them there is no such a thing as educa-
tional psychology. There are but few of this
class, the most of them having belonged to an older
Those of the second class, a very large class,
know little or no scientific psychology, and so oppose
it, because to acknowledge the need for it is to ac-
164 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
knowledge a criticism on themselves. With the
second class the wish has been father to the thought.
They oppose it perfectly consistently. If one knows
no psychology, his knowledge of psychology certainly
will not help him any in teaching.
The rapid strides with which pedagogical work
has been coming hi to schools of every kind is evidence
of what is being thought on this subject. Every
normal school, private and public, every college and
university now has its pedagogical department. And
this state of things is very recent. Now, psychology
is the basis upon which the whole superstructure of
Teachers' examinations almost everywhere now
demand a knowledge of professional subjects, too.
Thoughts of the Thinkers. William T. Harris,
United States Commissioner of Education, and an
eminent thinker and educator says: "If the teacher
knows nothing of psychology as a science, he must
copy in detail the methods of others, and rely on his
general knowledge of human nature derived from
experience. Like all uneducated workmen, he may
succeed after a sort by following tradition unaided
by science, but he will not develop beyond a narrow
degree of perfection in details. He will have no in-
sight into the general relations of his work. He can
not safely deviate from routine, nor venture to crit-
icise his own work or the work of others. If he has
learned good models, he may pass for a good teacher;
THE TEACHER. 165
if he has learned bad ones, he is unable to perceive
their defects. Possessing no scientific knowledge of
the mind he can not lift himself above the details
of his art to the principles which govern them, and
become himself an original source of directive energy.
Some knowledge of the mind every successful teacher
must have, although in so many cases it is unsystem-
atic, and consequently unscientific."
Herbert Spencer, the philosopher, psychologist,
and educator, says: "Grant that the phenomena of
intelligence conform to laws; grant that the evolution
of intelligence in a child also conforms to laws; and it
follows inevitably that education can be rightly guided
only by a knowledge of these laws. To suppose that
you can properly regulate this process of forming
and accumulating ideas, without understanding the
nature of the process, is absurd. How widely, then,
must teaching as it is, differ from teaching as it
should be; when hardly any parents, and but few
teachers, know anything about psychology. ' '
William James, an eminent psychologist, says:
"It (a knowledge of psychology) certainly narrows
the path for experiments and trials. We know in
advance, if we are psychologists, that certain methods
will be wrong, so our psychology saves from mis-
takes. It makes us, moreover, more clear as to what
we are about. We gain confidence in respect to any
method which we are using as soon as we believe that
it has theory as well as practice at its back. Most of
166 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
all it fructifies our independence, and it reanimates
Without multiplying quotations, let it be sufficient
to say there is scarcely an educator of note or good
reputation among civilized peoples who does not speak
in the same general way on this subject.
A knowledge of psychology is absolutely no guaran-
tee of a good teacher, but it is just as true tJiat no one can
be more tJian a successful imitator as a teacher loithout a
knowledge of psychology. To be an artist in one's
work requires a mastery of the principles underlying
Purpose of Education. The purpose of education
has been studied before, but it remains to study why
the teacher should have as nearly correct views as
possible of the purpose of education. And since the
purpose of education and the purpose of life are
the same, the question to be studied is the importance
of having the correct view of the purpose of life.
One may possibly wear his religion on Sundays,
and put it off on week days. But his view of the
object to be accomplished by education will show it-
self in all he does. Every act in the schoolroom will
be affected by it. If he has wrong ideas of the pur-
pose of education, every assignment will be tinged by
it; every recitation will be colored thereby; and every
correction or direction will be affected by these false
ideas. If he has right ideas of life and education,
they will manifest themselves in all his school work.
THE TEACHER. 167
If he has no definite ideas of the purpose of education
and life, his work will be purposeless, scattering,
disorganized, and fragmentary. A clear, fervent
purpose will draw the teacher's work toward its ac-
complishment as surely as the magnet attracts the
particles of steel.
Knowledge of Methods. The teacher should know
current approved methods of teaching the various
school subjects. The notion that students can grad-
uate from the primary school or the high school and
go into the schools and teach well without having
studied approved methods is entirely wrong, and
baneful, and pernicious in its influences. The ap-
pallingly bad work done by such teachers all over the
country is evidence of this truth.
It is still held by many that if the teacher knows
his subject well this is a guarantee that he will teach
it well. This, however, is not at all necessarily true.
Nothing is commoner in school work than teachers
who know their subjects well, but who teach poorly.
"The professional training of teachers is not
generally high. Many people still entertain the idea
that to know a subject is a guarantee of the ability to
teach it. Nor is it easy to demonstrate the fallacy of
this notion to those who are ignorant of the laws that
govern the workings of the human mind."
The teacher who knows the method of teaching
any subject knows (1) the means to be used; (2) how cor-
rectly to use them; (3) the natural processes of the
learner's mind in learning that subject.
168 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
To any one who will think it is plain that to know
this is of equal importance with knowing well the
subject. This point will receive full study in chapter
Practice in the Art of Teaching. One becomes
skillful in doing anything by practice. Thus one
becomes skillful in writing by practice in writing;
skillful in riding a bicycle by riding; skillful hi skating
by skating; skillful in ball-playing by playing ball.
This is a principle that holds true in the acquirement
of any art. And since teaching is an art, the principle
applies to it. So a teacher to become skillful must
have practice in the art of teaching. This practice
may be obtained in two ways:
1. A student may obtain it by teaching as a
student- teacher under the direction of a skillful train-
ing-teacher in a training school.
2. A teacher may obtain it by teaching in his
own school without having had any practice before,
and thus acquire the skill by experience without the
direction of a training- teacher.
It is evident that learning to teach in the latter
way is pretty hard on the pupils upon which the
teacher practices. It is too much a matter of experi-
ment, and is very much like a physician's learning to
practice medicine by experimenting upon his pa-
tients. But everywhere almost the children in our
schools are victims of such experimenting.
It is truly a deplorable set of conditions which
compels persons to teach who have merely enough
education in the subjects to secure licenses, and it is-
certainly not a less deplorable set of conditions which
compels teachers to experiment thus with the inno-
cent lives of our children.
Energetic Student Habits. The living teacher is a.
constant worker. He ever keeps before him a high
degree of excellence in all lines of work toward which
he constantly strives. A teacher never reaches a,
place in his school work where he can safely rest on
the oars and drift. There is absolutely no way to-
have a thorough, fresh knowledge of the subjects
taught; to keep in mind the best educational methods
and ideals; to maintain a healthful interest in one's
profession but by constant industrious student habits.
Everything that lives progresses, and nothing makes
progress more rapidly than the science and art of
education. One as a teacher simply can not rely upon
his past preparation to guide him safely and success-
fully through in his teaching. He must keep up with.
educational progress or he will be an "old fogy " and
a "fossil" sooner than he is aware. The educational
world demands thoughtful, progressive teachers.
"To reach the port of heaven, we must sail some-
times with the wind and sometimes against it, but
we must sail, and not drift nor lie at anchor. "
Daily Preparation. No teacher can succeed well
without the habit of preparing his lessons for his.
170 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
daily recitations, and for this reason the habit of
daily preparation is regarded a necessary character-
istic of the teacher. A teacher never gets to a point
where he knows a subject so well that he can do his
best work without making special preparation for
each lesson. This is true for several reasons. First,
no lesson is ever taught at any two times under the
same set of circumstances. Students to whom
the lessons are to be taught will vary in capacity and
other particulars. So each lesson must be prepared
with the view of teaching it to the particular class one
has, if the very best teaching is to be done.
Secondly, a teacher who teaches without daily
preparation shows staleness in his work; his teaching
lacking all the freshness, vigor, and interest born of
seeing something new in the subject. This results
from the fact that going over the same thing again
and again without seeing anything new of necessity
grows monotonous and uninteresting. While on the
other hand no one ever knows a subject so well but
that he can see something new in it by his study in
Thirdly, for most teachers it is the only means of
mitigating the evils which usually result from a lack
of sufficient knowledge of the subjects taught.
The teacher who will succeed best is the one who
"gets out" his lessons daily. This he expects of his
students, and this his students have a right to expect
THE TEACHER. 171
Love of Occupation. Every one knows with how
much more zest work which one likes to do is done
than work which one does not like to do. Too many
teachers make teaching a mere stepping-stone to
some other kind of work, and so do not put their
hearts into it and really prepare themselves for the
work. Not being in love with teaching is largely
the cause of this.
No teacher who does not like to teach school can
show so much interest, enthusiasm, aggressiveness,
and progressiveness in his work as he would if he
loved it. Love for the work lightens the labor; it puts
the spirit of life into it. Otherwise teaching becomes
the veriest drudgery, a thing to be endured only.
Sympathy with Children. Sympathy with chil-
dren has been regarded by many great educators as
the highest and most essential characteristic of the
teacher. The ability of the teacher to rejoice with
his students in their joys and triumphs, to grieve
wdth them in their grief, in short, to be in sympa-
thetic touch with their lives in all phases is the
characteristic above all others that enables the teacher
to touch the lives of his children and uplift them.
Such a teacher is one of heart power the one who
can love every child, the erring and wayward as well
as the good.
It is unfortunate for the children that circum-
stances are such that teachers largely teach school at
a period of life when they have the least sympathy
172 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
for children. From sixteen to thirty is the period in
life in which young men and young women have the
least sympathy for children. This is the period in
which young men and young women are most inter-
ested in themselves and in each other. Before sixteen
and after about thirty they have more sympathy with
children. But between sixteen and thirty is the
period in which a large majority of teachers do their
Sympathy for child life is idealized in the follow-
ing, said to have been found among the unpublished
papers of Charles Dickens, the great educator and
lover of children:
They are idols of hearts and of households;
They are angels of God in disguise;
His sunshine still sleeps in their tresses;
His glory still beams in their eyes.
Those shouts of home and of heaven
Have made me more manly and mild,
And I now know how Jesus could liken
The Kingdom of God to a child.
My heart grows as tender as woman's,
And the fountains of feeling will flow,
When I think of the paths steep and stony
Where the feet of these dear ones must go.
O, the mountains of sin that o'er-hang them !
O, the tempests of fate blowing wild !
But I know there's nothing on earth more holy
Than the innocent heart of a child.
Desirable Characteristics^ Though Not Absolutely
Necessary. There are several characteristics which
THE TEACHER 173
greatly facilitate a teacher's success, but which not
allteachers can possess, and without which success
in teaching may still be attained. A few of the most
important of these will be briefly studied: 1. Good
health. 2. Natural aptitude. 3. Personal magnet-
ism. 4. Mastery of the circumstances.
Good Health. The relation between the mind and
body is so close that whatever in any way affects the
efficiency of bodily functions also affects the mind.
Dispositions and temperaments are results of bodily
conditions. To do one's best work of any kind requires
a healthy, vigorous, vivacious condition of the nervous,
digestive, circulatory, respiratory, and muscular
systems. Aggressive, vigorous, efficient work is the
accompaniment of good health.
Ill health on the other hand induces weakness of
effort, irritability of mind, despondent and depressed
states of spirit, discouragement and dreariness fatal
to all successful teaching and school government. Ill
health makes all work drudgery, amusement a bore,
and life a misery and a failure. The longer one lives
the more fully he appreciates this fact.
Therefore, one of the highest duties towards his
school is for the teacher to make all reasonable ex-
ertion to keep his health uniformly excellent.
Natural Aptitude. No doubt there are persons
who are to some extent natural teachers; that is, are
naturally adapted to teaching, while others have no
natural ability as a teacher. There are persons who
174 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
naturally show an aptitude in music, while others can
never reach any marked degree of proficiency in
music. The same is without doubt true of teachers.
This natural aptitude is a very desirable character-
istic, and one that must be possessed by every teacher
to some extent, but it is one which not all, not even a
majority of teachers, possess to a large extent. That
most persons can become good teachers with proper
preparation is an encouraging truth. However, it is
just as true that there are some who when they at-
tempt to teach have entirely missed their calling.
There are some whose native ability for teaching is
such that they will never succeed at this work. Such
people, who may be most excellent men and women,
may succeed well at some other line of work. Froebel
and Pestalozzi succeeded well at nothing else but
Personal Magnetism. This is the characteristic of
the teacher which draws people to him. It is the
endowment of the teacher which makes friends for
him both in school and out of school. It is not, as
some suppose, altogether an endowment with which
one is born. It may be attained to by painstaking care.
Some of the elements which go to make it up are
general friendliness, sympathy, courtesy, charity ', frank-
ness, and pleasant greeting. These elements may all
or any of them be attained by careful cultivation.
Mastery of Circumstances. By a mastery of cir-
cumstances is meant the ability of doing the proper
THE TEACHER. 175
thing next under any set of circumstances. There
are persons who seem never to know what to do next
under any set of circumstances except the most usual,
while again there are persons who seem always to
know what to do in any set of circumstances. Now
the teacher has much need of belonging to the latter
class, for a school is a place famous for the uprising
of unusual circumstances. A teacher must possess
the ability to some extent to meet the occasion, other-
wise he can hardly get along for a day. But perhaps
not all can possess this characteristic to the extent
Illustration. A student upon an occasion of fail-
ure in recitation in a class, insisted he had no right
to believe what he could not see with his eyes. Vari-
ous illustrations were given by the teacher to show
that the position taken by the student was not only
untenable but unreasonable. The student would not
be convinced of his error. The teacher mildly and
pleasantly asked the student if he believed he had a,
brain. A smile went around the class and the
student took his seat without a word.
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL.
Importance of. There is no subject that enlists
the attention of the teacher of more far-reaching im-
portance than this one of school government. Upon
the successful solution of the question, How best
manage a school? depends the efficiency of all the
school processes. The teacher who fails in school
government fails in all, because all other aspects of
school work bear an organic relation to school man-
agement and their efficiency depends upon it. To the
beginning teacher it is the most vital school question.
It is the rock upon which more teachers in their
careers have been shipwrecked than upon any other.
It has caused more sleepless nights, more shattered
nervous systems, more hot, scalding tears than any
other aspect of school work.
Kinds of School Government. There are to be
found in school two kinds of school government: gov-
ernment by force, or fear, and government by direc-
tion rather than by suppression. The following
names are respectively appropriate: 1. Police gov-
ernment. 2. Rational government.
Police government is by physical force, or by fear
on the part of the pupils. Such government is always
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 177
accompanied by a great deal of friction and bad feel-
ing. It does little or nothing toward giving the pupil
habits of right self-control and self -direction, the end
of all school government.
Rational government aims to lead the pupils to
do right because they love the right. It is to be
accomplished by reasonable means of firmness, kind-
ness, and justice. It accomplishes much toward
making pupils self-governing, toward giving them
habits of right self-control and right self-direction.
The School an Organization. In the study of the
nature of the school in a previous chapter, it was seen
that the school is an organization, and that the ideas
which are to be found in an organization, according to
the best use of the term, are:
1. It is a complex whole.
2. This whole is made up of individual parts.
3. These parts have a harmonious working re-
4. These parts work for one common end.
5. The whole is self-acting and self-adjusting.
The school is made up of pupil, teacher, cur-
riculum, school officers, etc., all constituting a com-
plex whole, the individual parts being patrons, school
officers, children, teacher, etc. These all work to-
gether in such a way as not to produce friction, and
so as to economize energy as far as possible. This is
what is meant by a harmonious working relation.
The education of the learner is the common end for
178 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
which all these parts work. The school as a whole
acts originates its program, classes, recitations, and
sets up ideals and strives to attain them; it also, when
it gets out of order, proceeds to adjust its own diffi-
culties. In this way it is self-acting and self-ad-
The Fundamental Law. When the school is doing
the work of educating the pupils the most efficiently,
it is found to be when there is the most unity in it.
And when it is doing its work the most poorly, it is
found to be when there is the greatest lack of unity.
Then the law underlying all the complex activities of
the school to which they conform in order to contrib-
ute to the highest success of the school, is the laio of
By unity is meant that any act of any element of
the school furthers any other act of the same element or
any act of a different element toioard the accomplishment
of the purpose of the school.
It is evident that unity is the thing which will
contribute to the success of the school always. And
it is equally evident that if one element of the school
so acts that his activity antagonizes the acts of any
other element, or other acts of his own that it works
against the success of the school it breaks the law
From the study so far the hint is that the problem
involved in school management is the maintenance of
the law of unity.
THE MANAGEMENT OP THE SCHOOL. 179
Source of the Laic. The laws of any organization
are inherent in the organization and are not externally
imposed. The law that determines that the plumule,
the growing point of the stem of the plant, grows
toward sunlight and air, and the law that determines
that the radix, the growing point of the root, grows
from the sunlight and air are in the inherent nature
of the plant. No externally imposed conditions can
change the laws. The botanist can discover these
and many other laws of plant life, but he can make no
laws for the plant. No one can legislate for the plant.
Legislatures and parliaments might pass a law that
hereafter plants should grow, blossom, and produce
fruit without moisture, sunshine, and heat, and all
nations of the earth might ratify this law, but the
plants would go on in their own seemingly stubborn
way, and demand for their growth, heat, light, and
The law of the school is as much a part of the
nature of the school as the laws of plant life are a
part of the nature of the plant.
Rules. The various aspects of the law of unity
are rightly to be considered the rules of the school.
Some writers have attempted to make a distinction
between the law of the school and the rules of the
school. It has been said that a rule of the school is
an externally imposed regulation made by the teacher,
director, trustee, or superintendent, and that a law
of the school is some truth inherent in the nature of
180 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
the school according to which the various elements
act. This is not a true distinction; and to attempt to
make such a distinction is bad, because it is a source
of mischief. The right meaning of a rule is, that it is
a minor law. The various aspects of the law of unity
are thus the rules of the school. The following is a
formal statement for it: A rule of the school is some
aspect of the laiv of unity.
The correct ideas of the law and the rules of the
school should be thoroughly fixed in the lives of pupils
Aspects of the Law. An analysis of the law of
unity in the school reveals various lines of unity to be
sought, the most prominent of which are the follow-
1. Unity in the organization as a whole.
2. Unity between teacher and pupil.
3. Unity between the pupil's real and ideal self.
Before taking up the study of each of these in
detail, it is worth while to notice that this is only a
very general analysis. A minute analysis would re-
veal almost an endless number of aspects of the law
of unity. For instance, there must be unity between
patrons and teacher; between patrons and children;
among school officers; between the school officers and
teacher; between the school officers and children,
and among the children themselves. Each one of
these unities might in turn be further analyzed.
THE MANAGEMENT OP THE SCHOOL. 181
Unity in the Organization as a Whole. There is
complete unity in the organization as a whole when
every element of it is so acting that each act furthers
the influence of any other act of any element toward the
accomplishment of the common end the education of
The thought of what unity in the school as a
whole consists of is of the highest importance to every
conscious element in the school. If this thought can
be so firmly fixed in the minds of each person
teacher, learner, school officers, and patrons con-
nected with the school that it will become a part of
his life, the government of the school will be largely
An appreciation of the meaning of the law of
unity in the organization as a whole will reveal the
fact that it is not the learner alone, as usually thought,
who violates the rules of the school, but almost as
often the teacher, the patrons, or the school hoard.
Legislators themselves may break the rules of
the school by making "school laws" that break the
unity of the school, and militate against the integrity
and efficiency of school work. It thus appears that
there is a distinction between the law of the school
and what often goes into the statutes as "school laws. "
When a school board secures a teacher for any
other reason than because of the ability of that
teacher to do good teaching, its members break the
law of the school. That teachers should be chosen
182 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
from any other consideration than their ability to
minister to the lives of their pupils is a pernicious
doctrine which should have the condemnation of all
honest and sensible people in the strongest possible
terms. Poverty, patronage, nepotism, machine pol-
itics, church influences, and so on, of themselves
should have absolutely no place in the considerations
when a teacher is to be chosen. A school board will
hire a teacher year after year wholly incompetent and
unfit for a teacher, because she is poor and has an
invalid mother; they will not hire competent and pro-
ficient married ladies to teach because perchance a
married lady who teaches will support her worthless
husband. Or they will trade patronage, a teacher
being hired because she trades at the store which is
owned by a member of the board. Such school
boards are the worst enemies of the schools and the
children who are in them. There is no economy, no
justice, nor common sense in thus injuring the lives
of a room-full of children, thirty or forty, year after
year, in order to furnish a place for a teacher who is
One gets heart- sick at the incompetency, dis-
honesty, or imbecility of a school board which will
take into consideration the many things brought to
bear to secure places for incompetent teachers even
at the disregard of the influence on the growing lives
of the children. The doctrine that sets anything
above the welfare of the pupils in the choice of teach-
ers is wholly indefensible.
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 183
In this manner is the law of the school broken by
school boards to their everlasting dishonor and dis-
grace; and the conditions of our school system which
permit this pernicious custom constitute the most
serious defect of the American schools to-day, one
whose influence is baneful alike to pupils and teachers.
The Pmver of Sentiment. By sentiment is meant
a feeling for or against anything because of a knowl-
edge concerning that thing. Sentiment is a powerful
factor in controlling people's lives and actions. In
fact life is almost wholly controlled by sentiment.
A certain church community has a sentiment
against an organ in church, and a pastor comes and
lauds the advantages of the church organ. One can
easily judge the standing of that pastor in that com-
munity. The same sermon might be preached in
another community with most satisfactory results.
In a town now in mind almost everyone plays at
cards, and any new-comer who refuses to play is
regarded as unsociable and ridiculous. The best
church people in this town do not object to cards, so
to play at cards has no bad effect upon one's reputa-
tion in this town. In another town now in mind, to
play at cards is placed in the category of heinous
crimes, so to play at cards here would ruin one's
reputation and destroy his usefulness in this com-
munity. What is the difference hi the two places?
The answer is a difference in sentiment.
Since sentiment is thus so strong a factor in
determining people's actions, it may be made use of
184 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
very advantageously in school government. If there
is some line of conduct which breaks the law of unity
in the school, the most potent, as well as the most
rational, means of controlling it is to establish a sen-
timent against it in the school. And if there is some
line of conduct beneficial to the school, the surest way
of introducing and maintaining it is to establish a
sentiment in favor of it.
The Main Line of School Government. It will be
found then that the main work of the teacher in school
government is to establish a proper sentiment with
respect to the following five points:
1. The law of the school is inherent in the school
because of the pupil's part in it.
2. The pupils as much as the teacher help to
make the rules of the school.
3. The teacher, pupils, school officers, or patrons
may break a rule of the school.
4. The pupils as well as the teacher help to keep
the rules of the school intact
5. The ultimate object of the school is the high-
est good of each pupil.
If teachers can establish a strong sentiment for
that which is wanted and against that which is
not wanted in school the government of the school
-will largely care for itself.
"The main line of work running through the
management of a school is that of developing in
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 185
the thought of the pupil the laws which are in the
school because of his membership in it."
Behavior, or Conduct. Behavior in school is often
thought of as applying merely to the student, but a
true view shows that conduct with reference to the
school involves the actions of the teacher, pupil, pa-
tron, or school officer. Conduct in school is one's bear-
ing toward the unity in the school. Good conduct is
that which maintains or tends to maintain the unity
in school; bad conduct is that which breaks or tends
to break the unity in school. That which is good
behavior is right in school, and bad behavior is wrong
Illustration. Whispering as a rule is wrong in
school, because it breaks the unity in several ways.
First, it breaks the unity between the teacher and
the pupil, because it is discourteous to the teacher;
and when the pupil whispers he breaks the unity of
thought between his own mind and the mind of the
teacher. Secondly, it disturbs others in the class, is
noisy, and disorderly. Every teacher should set the
stamp of strong disapproval upon whispering in
school by showing the students that they are much
more gentlemanly and lady-like without it.
Unity between Teacher and Learner. It is in the
unity between the teacher and the learner that the
life of the learner comes into vital touch with the life
of the teacher. There is unity between the teacher
and the learner when there is a mutual furtherance in
their acts toward the education of the learner.
186 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
This unity has an important influence upon suc-
cessful teaching. No teacher can do his best teaching
to a student when he is aware that there is antagonism
between that student and himself when he does not
like the student or when he knows the student does
not like him. And no student can do his best work
for a teacher when he does not like the teacher or
when he knows the teacher does not like him. From
which it results that the teacher should make all
reasonable efforts to maintain cordial relations be-
tween himself and his students. These cordial re-
lations should manifest themselves at all times both
in the recitation and out, if this unity is to be main-
Unity between the Learner's Real and Ideal Self.
There is unity between the learner's real and ideal
self when each act of his life lifts him from a lower to
a higher plane of living; when through his action the
/ am becomes constantly what was the / ought just
before the act.
Prom this it appears that constant, perfect unity
between the real and ideal self of the learner can
never be more than approximated, for to attain to
such unity constantly would be an ideal growth to-
To make the learner conscious that every act of
his life leaves a permanent effect and influence on his
life, and that every act which brings about unity be-
tween his real and ideal self influences him for good,
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 187
and that every act which breaks this unity or tends
to break it affects him for the worse, is to make him
conscious of the disturbing struggle in life. When
the learner sees and fervently feels the nature of this
struggle he is naturally unwilling to do those things
which will degrade him, but aspires to a higher life
Thus in maintaining the unity between the
student's real and ideal self, the school is fixing the
habit with him of right living under any circumstan-
ces. And this to give the learner the habit of self-con-
trol and right self-direction is the ultimate end of all
Unifying Conditions. Unity in school is not best
attained directly, but is best attained indirectly by
establishing unifying conditions. With the proper
unifying conditions established unity follows as a
natural result. Thus the establishing of unifying
conditions is a means to unity as an end.
Unifying conditions might be analyzed into many
aspects, but time will permit the study of only the
following important aspects:
1. Unifying conditions in the organization as a
2. Unifying conditions between teacher and
3. Unifying conditions between the learner's
real and ideal self.
188 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
Unifying Conditions in the Organization as a Whole.
Unity in the organization as a whole means that all
the elements of the school so act that each act fur-
thers the influence of any other activity of any element
toward the accomplishment of the common object
the education of the learner.
Now, what is the condition which preeminently
brings about this unity? The answer to this question
is, the condition above all others for unity in the
organization as a whole is the proper sentiment to-
ward the nature of the school and its work; that is,
the proper sentiment toward the following points as
1. The law of the school is inherent in the school
because of the pupil's part in it.
2. The pupils as much as the teacher help to
make the rules of the school.
3. The teacher, pupils, school officers, or patrons
may break a rule of the school.
4. The pupils as well as the teacher help to keep
the rules of the school intact.
5. The ultimate object of the school is the high-
est good of each pupil.
This condition estimates every act of every ele-
ment of the school in terms of its ministry to the wel-
fare of the pupils. It means the best is none too good
for the pupil. The best teacher, the best school house,
the best books, the best school board, the best
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 189
superintendent, and the best apparatus are due the
And any school officer, teacher, or superintend-
ent who purposely, or through neglect, does less than
to strenuously exert himself to secure those con-
ditions is not loyal to the charge entrusted to him.
Conditions of Unity bettveen Teacher and Pupils.
The most important condition of unity between
teacher and pupils is the spirit of good will and cor-
diality the feeling on the part of the pupils that their
teacher is earnestly trying to do them good, and the
feeling on the part of the teacher that the students
believe that he is earnestly trying to help them on
toward a wise and virtuous life. This spirit in school
is the most potent condition of unity between the
teacher and his pupils.
A second important condition of unity between
the teacher and pupils is the school-room. It is the
place where the outward form of unity in the school
is maintained. It is the place where the students
come together for the work of the school, and it may
be made a positive influence for securing unity.
"It must be more than a secure, quiet, and com-
fortable meeting-place for teacher and pupil; it must
have a positively elevating influence, bringing the
pupil, by its active toning power, into the higher life
and mood of unity with the teacher."
The schoolroom should be a place of harmony,
peace, and beauty; pleasing, attractive, and homelike.
190 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
It should have clean and beautiful floors and walls,
with some harmony between the two. There should
be some decoration in the form of some well chosen
pictures, not many, though, some casts, and some
vases and flowers; and whatever else good taste sug-
gests to make it pleasant, pure, harmonious, and
admirable. The general tone of such a schoolroom
constantly tends to induce the attitude of mind favor-
able to the unity of the pupil with his teacher.
The Purpose of the Schoolroom. The purpose of
the schoolroom as a unifying condition may be ana-
lyzed into the following three points:
1. To bring the learner into the presence of the
2. To make the teacher and learner comfortable.
3. To minimize diverting influences.
Presence of Learner. In the schoolroom the
learner is brought into the presence of the teacher.
It is necessary for the pupil and teacher to work in
the same atmosphere. No first rate teaching can be
done except in the presence of the learner. An at-
tempt is sometimes made to teach by correspondence,
but such teaching lacks the life, flexibility, and force
that come from the personal contact of teacher and
learner. In the presence of the student the teacher
can adapt his teaching to the moods, attitudes of
mind, and peculiarities of each individual. Thus only
in the presence of the student can the teacher best
lead him to think, experience the feeling, and will as
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 191
Also in teaching it is necessary to have the pupils
in easy communicable relations. The minds of
pupils can not keep in touch with the mind of the
teacher in the teaching act unless the pupils cam
without difficulty see and hear the teacher. If
students must crane their necks to see the teacher's
face and gestures, and strain to hear his words, it is
safe to say unity will not last long under such con-
ditions. Students will naturally make a few spas-
modic efforts under such circumstances to maintain,
the unity between themselves and the teacher, but
the tension being too great, they will soon settle down,
the unity broken, to await the end of the recitation.
Communicable relations demand that the school-
room be not "too long, nor too broad. Students can.
not hear the teacher well more than thirty feet, and
can not see the teacher well from the sides if the
width of the room is more than twenty-four feet. All
school authorities are agreed on these dimensions for
a schoolroom. So from the standpoint of school gov-
ernment, as well as from the hygienic standpoint, no
schoolroom should be larger than twenty-four by
Comfort of Teacher and Pupils. Much of the noise
and friction in school arises because the pupils are
uncomfortable. No student should be expected to
work quietly who is uncomfortable to any great ex-
tent. While the schoolhouse is to provide for the
comfort of pupils and teachers, many of them cer-
192 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
tainly fail in this to a remarkable degree. When
students and the teacher are uncomfortable, the unity
of teacher and pupils is broken in that their attention
is drawn to their bodily discomfort. Thus no student
or teacher can do his best work under conditions of
There are at any rate four things connected with
the schoolroom which will contribute to bodily com-
fort: 1. Comfortable seats. 2. Proper temper-
ature. 3. Proper ventilation. 4. Proper lighting.
Not only from hygienic reasons, but from reasons
of school government should the seats be of proper
pattern, and well adapted to the age and size of pupils
who use them. The demand for seats adapted to the
individual students who use them will sooner or later
bring adjustable seats into the schoolroom. The
need of them has been felt in the past, but school
officers have objected to them on the grounds that
they are not substantially made and that they cost
too much. Both these objections will in time be over-
Every schoolroom should have a thermometer
hung about four feet from the floor in some part of
the room where the air would be at an average tem-
perature with that in the room as a whole, and the
mercury should be kept as nearly as possible at from
68 to 72, Fahrenheit. If the temperature is below
this, some one will be uncomfortable from cold; and
if the temperature is above this, some one will be un-
comfortable with heat.
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 193
Plenty of pure fresh air admitted to the school-
room in such a way that no one, teacher or pupil, will
be subjected to draughts is certainly essential to
comfort, and since essential to comfort, it becomes a
question of school management as well as a question
of school hygiene. One point here needs to be re-
iterated and emphasized, and that is, that air may be
unfit to breathe and at the same time be cold. That the
temperature of a room is 68 or below is absolutely no
guarantee that the air in that room is pure enough to
breathe. This is a truth that many janitors never
Bad lighting likewise induces bodily discomfort
and so breaks up the unity. Plenty of light for all
parts of the room should be admitted to the school-
room at all times, and the main sources should be
from the pupil's back and left. In order that there
may be plenty of light in all parts of the room the
relation between floor space and window pane space
should be 4 to 1; that is, there should be not less than
one square foot of window pane to every four square
feet of floor space. This relation should obtain when
there are no obstructions to prevent the free passage
of light. If buildings, trees, or anything of the kind
obstruct the free passage of the light, there should
be more than one square foot of window pane to four
square feet of floor space.
The seating, heating, ventilating, and lighting of
schoolrooms have usually been studied from the
194 STUDIES IX PEDAGOGY.
hygienic standpoint, but they also deserve study
from the viewpoint of school management.
Minimizing Diverting Influences. Any influence
which takes the pupil's attention away from his
school work is a diverting influence, and whatever
removes influences that take the pupil's attention
from his school work is a condition of unity. The
schoolroom evidently shuts out many influences which
would attract the pupil's attention, and thus divert
him. Some schoolrooms are however so situated that
all sorts of sights and sounds are continually attract-
ing the attention of the pupils. The writer has taught
in a schoolroom near a railroad upon which as many
as four or five heavily loaded trains would pass during
one recitation period. Just so many times was the
unity of the recitation broken. Again, a schoolroom
situated near a paved street will often have the unity
between the teacher and pupils broken by the rat-
tling of vehicles upon this street. These points are
worth consideration in choosing a location for school
It is upon the school premises and within the
schoolroom in particular though that distracting in-
fluences may be minimized. These influences are
those which divert through: 1. Touch, 2. Sight.
Touch. The law against diverting influences
through touch demands that all pencils, knives, un-
necessary books, fruit, toys, pencil cases, etc., except
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 195
those in actual use, should be removed from desks.
If such things are left on the desk they are a constant
challenge to the student to touch them, and as such
under any ordinary circumstances will be handled by
This law also demands single seats, and estimates
especially their superiority over double seats.
Sight. It is imperative that all unnecessary
sights be removed from the attention of the students.
Hence the law against students passing from one part
of the room to another; to the water bucket; to and
from the stove; against any unusual arrangement of
Hearing. The law against distracting influences
through hearing demands quiet in the schoolroom.
This is such an important point in school management
that special study needs to be given to it.
From a mistaken idea that to demand quiet in the
schoolroom is to rob children of their freedom, some
teachers not only permit but advocate an intolerable
amount of noise in their schools. The error of this
doctrine should be made as clear as possible to every
teacher because of the mischief ensuing from it.
Dr. Arnold Tompkins exposes well its pedagog-
ical unsoundness in the following: " Most effective
of all means of diverting the attention is noise. Si-
lence must be the law of the schoolroom. The noise
of whispering, studying, fixing fires, walking, loud
talk of the teacher, etc., must be gotten rid of. It is
196 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
quite common for the teacher to make more noise than
all the pupils together. A teacher should speak in
subdued tones, and move about too quietly to attract
notice. He should so address a class during recita-
tion that the pupils studying are not compelled to
listen. Pencils should be sharpened at recess; and
slate frames covered, or slates abolished for note-
I know it has been often urged that a noisy
schoolroom is a sign of energy and activity, of in-
dustry and hard work; that the working beehive must
hum. This sounds very well till we reflect that it is
physical energy and activity that makes the noise;
there is no mental analogy. Rather it is the reverse;
the greater the mental activity the greater the silence.
The boy who thinks is not necessarily noisy, but
necessarily silent. All professional students seek a
silent retreat as the best condition for mental labor.
This doctrine of a noisy school arises from two classes
of teachers, those who can not secure silence and
seek an escape through the theory; and those who
champion in good faith the plea for freedom on the
part of the pupil, or as it seems to some, a plea for
Since the child has such a superabundance of
energy which seeks to discharge itself in muscular
activity, it is almost an impossibility for him to keep
quiet long at a time. This truth together with the
law of silence for the schoolroom demands short
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 197
school hours with frequent intermissions and rest
periods in which an opportunity is given for muscular
activity. Marches, drills, and other forms of physical
exercise are a powerful means in maintaining silence
in the schoolroom if interspersed between the periods
of mental work.
Conditions of Unity between the Learner's Heal and
Ideal Self. It may be reiterated that there is unity
between the pupil's real and ideal self when each act
he puts forth helps to fix in him habits of wisdom and
virtue. If each act would do so, this would be ideal
growth in self-realization.
The highest aim of the school is to induce actions
by the pupil that will constantly uplift him, and give
him the ability to inhibit those which would degrade
him, that the growth brought about by these activities
may crystallize into character whose elements are
wisdom and virtue. But this would be nothing more
than unity between the learner's real and ideal self.
The conditions of this unity are at any rate four:
1. Pure motives. 2. Eight ideas of life. 3. Incen-
tives. 4. Social influences.
Pure Motives. Pure motives mean one's intentions
to do good in his actions.
The one who habitually intends to do good in his
actions is much more likely to do the things which
will constantly further him toward wisdom and virtue,
than the one who frequently does things with bad
intent. Of course one may make mistakes, but on
198 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
the whole pure motives prove a very potent condition
in maintaining the unity between the learner's real
and ideal self.
That the teacher may lead the student to look into
his own mind and make inquiries about his motives is
a thought worthy of attention, too. In this way the
teacher may help the pupils in establishing this very
important condition of unity.
Eight, Ideas of Life. One's ideas of anything al-
ways determine very largely what his actions are
toward that thing. Therefore, the pupil must have
right ideas of life, otherwise he can not attain to right
living. If the pupil can be made to see and feel fer-
vently that, when all things are considered, there is
but one thing in general in life worth living for,
namely, a high type of wise and virtuous manhood or
womanhood, one very essential condition of unity be-
tween his real and ideal self exists.
What an opportunity here for the teacher who is
himself what his students should become, to help
students to start right in life. The teacher must have
thought out what life's success consists in, it is true,
before he can inspire students to hunger and thirst
Right ideas of life and conduct are certainly a
very important condition of unity between the learn-
er's real and ideal self.
Incentives. Incentives are stimuli to urge to ac-
tivity. Strictly speaking an incentive is always a
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 199
desire for something, but the thing which arouses the
desire is also frequently called the incentive. As
such, are class grades, class honors, per cents,
Incentives may be divided into two classes: 1.
Natural. 2. Artificial.
Natural Incentives. Natural incentives are de-
sires for those effects which in the nature of things
result from the deed; as the knowledge and mental
growth which result from conscientious study.
Tlie one great natural incentive is the mind's inherent
desire for progress. The soul awakes to consciousness
with the desire for progress as its deepest and
strongest trait. This passion of the soul for knowl-
edge and righteousness, this desire for progress is
man's distinctive mark.
"Progress, man's distinctive mark alone,
Not God's, and not the beasts'; God is, they are,
Man partly is, and wholly hopes to be."
This characteristic of the mind, mental hunger, is
called wonder in psychology. Thus wonder is the
mind's natural incentive. It has produced science
All natural incentives are good for they stimulate
the learner to natural, healthy endeavor.
Artificial Incentives. Artificial incentives, as the
name implies, are incentives which do not naturally
result from the deed. For instance, a parent might
pay his child for learning his spelling lesson. The
200 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
child would thus be stimulated to learn spelling lessons,
from his desire for money. The incentive is un-
natural, for a quantity of money is not a natural
result of the action. Thus, examinations, per cents,
class honors, prizes, etc., come under the head of
Artificial incentives are at the best of doubtful
utility. While they may do some good, the evils re-
sulting from them probably outweigh by far this good.
The best educators in the land condemn them
"The use of such means necessarily kills the
desire to know, which is immoral because killing
the soul itself. When a teacher, in good faith that
the natural process of learning is its own sufficient
reward, begins to instruct pupils who have been
under the artificial stimulus of the per cent, system,
he finds them to be indifferent to legitimate appeals,
and ready to affirm that school life is not worth living
without the usual excitement and strife for per cent.
What hope for such pupils after the days of formal
instruction ! The severest criticism that can be made
on school work is to show that students after gradu-
ation have not a burning desire to pursue a systematic
course of study and improvement. The use of false
incentives is not the only reason for this; but it is
largely chargeable to formal methods of instruction
which necessitates artificial incentives, which further
render instruction dead and formal. By this process
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 201
the pupil, if not becoming positively averse to study,,
feels satisfied and self-sufficient, and having no foreign
incentive now offered, he is under no compulsion to>
further labor. If study means a contest with ponder-
able per centable packages of knowledge, how play
the game when there is no one to estimate and umpire?"
If the school is to determine to a future life of study v
the motives appealed to and cultivated in school must
be the same as those employed in the natural, health-
ful course of life out of school.' 1
"The abiding passion of the soul is for knowl-
edge, and all the teacher can properly do is to take
this fact fairly and at its worth. The passion he may
stimulate, make definite, and attach to the proper-
objects; but he can not introduce a substitute without
weakening the life-giving connection between the?
pupil learning and the object being learned."
Social Influences. The child is by nature a social
being, and will live in society after leaving school. In.
the school in many instances he first begins to learn
his duties with respect to others. In all cases the
pupil first begins to come fully into the understand-
ing of what it means to live in a society of his equals.
In the family the student begins to learn something
of living in society, but it is in the school that he first
meets with the conditions of society in anything like
those hi which he will be required to live later. The
school forms a transition from the family to the com-
plex social life of the community. Here the pupil
202 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
learns something of the difference between doing as
he pleases and doing so as to uplift himself and at the
same time help those around him. In the school are
good opportunities for learning habits of politeness,
toleration, charity, order, truthfulness, justice, and
industry. But all of this is unity between the learn-
er's real and ideal self. Thus social influence is one
of the conditions of unity between the real and ideal
Broken Unity. In the best regulated schools there
will be cases of broken unity. This may happen hi
any of the following ways: 1. Through ignorance.
2. Through neglect. 3. Through thoughtlessness.
4. Through willfulness. If the child does not know
that it is a violation of unity to come to school late,
and comes in late, it is a case of broken unity through
ignorance. If, however, he knows it is wrong, but
neglects to start in time, it is a case of broken unity
by neglect. If the learner thoughtlessly plays with
the ink well on his desk, and thus breaks the unity by
the noise made, it is a case of broken unity through
thoughtlessness. If a student purposely insults one
of his fellow students or the teacher, he willfully
breaks the unity of the school.
Since prevention is better than cure, the main
aim in school government is in preventing broken
unity. This is to be done by establishing conditions
for unity and eliminating those unfavorable to unity.
This consists first and at all times in establishing a
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 203
sentiment in the lives of students in favor of those
things conducive to unity and against those things
unfavorable to unity.
Restoration of Unity. When unity in any way in
school is broken it must be restored. The ideal con-
dition would be to have the school in such an attitude, that
the unity would be voluntarily restored by the one who
broke it. And if students have in mind ( 1 ) the nature
of the school; (2) the source and nature of the law of
the school; and (3) have the proper sentiment toward
school behavior, the unity in most cases, when broken,
will be spontaneously and voluntarily restored. But
since such conditions can not always be maintained,
it must at times be restored through the influence of
the teacher as an agent.
The teacher's work in restoring unity becomes a
not difficult task when the conditions insisted on all
along in these studies have been established in school.
Confidential talks with students in which the teacher
in a kind and sympathetic manner calls attention to
the offense and the way to correct it may be used
with lasting and beneficent results. Often nothing
is necessary but to call the student's attention to the
misbehavior. However, obstinate cases arise which
can not be passed by lightly, and this suggests the
question of school punishments.
School Punishments. This is the most delicate as
well as the most disagreeable feature of the teacher's
ivork. It requires a great deal of discretion, patience,
204 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
sympathy, and good sense to punish at all success-
It should be remembered that punishment in
school has the following two purposes:
1. To restore broken unity.
2. To prevent broken unity in the future.
And punishment which fails in either or both of these
things is not an entire success, but it may easily be
an entire failure. If by punishment the teacher, by
arousing anger, antagonism, and bad feeling, causes
more unity to be broken than restored, the school
would have fared better without the administering of
The teacher must not punish for revenge, or with
a vindictive spirit. Punishment must be reformative
and preventative, not vindictive. Plato was right
when he said only the unreasonable fury of a brute
would punish vindictively. If the teacher finds him-
self angry, and it is admitted that occasions for
justifiable anger arise in school, he will gain an im-
portant victory by not acting till his anger subsides.
He will often save a good many heartaches and
No recipes can be given for particular cases, but
the study of nature's punishments enables us to state
the following general rule, which is always safe to
follow: The punishment should be what in the nature of
things follows as a result of the offense.
THE MANAGEMENT OF THE SCHOOL. 205
The only difficulty with the guidance which this
rule furnishes in school punishments is that of de-
termining what the natural result of the offense is.
At times it is very difficult to determine what
naturally follows as a result of the offense. But in a
large number of cases this rule gives absolutely safe
Illustration. If a student spills water on the
floor of the schoolroom through carelessness, the
natural thing is to have him clean it up. If again a
student by making noise disturbs a certain part of
the room, the natural punishment is removal from
that part of the room.
Corporal Punishment. Corporal punishment is
punishment of the body, as by whipping, beating, etc.
The tendency in school government is to discard
it entirely. Some cities do not tolerate it at all in
their schools. It is, to say the best for it, the device
of the teacher who is not sufficiently wise to see a
better way. That a better way exists is not doubted
by those who have carefully studied the problem. It
is a noticable fact that the most skillful teachers
everywhere have the least use for corporal punish-
ment, while the least skillful resort to it most.
If our teachers were all wise enough, and if
school conditions were what they should be, no doubt
Corporal punishment could be abolished in school
entirely; but with existing conditions it does seem
that it is not entirely wise to wholly condemn and
206 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
forbid its use. However it should be remembered
that it is the device of the unskillful, and the ignorant,
and is to be used only when all other means have been
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD.
The Teaching Act. The school exists as an organ-
ization in order that the most favorable conditions,
may be furnished for the act of teaching. It is in
this act that the mind of the pupil comes into vital
touch with the mind of the teacher. Here the miracle
of the influence of one mind upon another is mani-
fested. Here it is that the most important duty of the
teacher is involved. To this process all other processes
of the school point. The school finds the idea that
created it in the process of realization in the teaching
act. The act of teaching is a process for it is a series
of steps directed toward the accomplishment of an
end. The teaching act is not a simple process for it
is a large process made up of smaller processes.
The Processes in It. A brief analysis of the teach-
ing act will show that there are three processes going
on in it, (1) the thinking the learner is doing; (2)
the thinking the teacher is doing; (3) a process of
handling questions, directions, objects, assignments,
and so on the manipulation of means in teaching.
The first two of these processes are spiritual, or
mental, processes, and the third is external to both
:208 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
the mind of the teacher and the pupil and is a physical
Illustration. In teaching the definition of a noun
to a student, first, the student's mind goes through
the process of thinking (1) that the noun is a sub-
stantive word; and (2) that it expresses an object by
naming it. This is the process in the mind of the
student in the teaching act. Secondly, the teacher
thinks these same points through with the student,
but he thinks several other things, too. This is the
spiritual process of the teacher in the teaching act.
Thirdly, there is a process of asking questions, illus-
trating, possibly referring to text-books, etc., going
on, and this is the physical process in the teaching
Nature of Method as a Subject of Study. The ques-
tion, What is the subject of method like? is often
asked. It may be answered in a general way by say-
ing it is a subject of study the pursuit of which has
for its special object to make teachers more skillful
in teaching than they would be without such study.
But this much might be said of any pedagogical
study of psychology, for instance. To be more
definite, method as a subject is that study which
deals with the three processes in the act of teaching
as indicated above. These three processes in their
various phases constitute the material of all study in
the subject of method.
The Subject-matter of Method. By subject-matter
is meant the material of study in any subject or lesson.
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD. 209
It is the thought and feeling embodied in any subject
or lesson which are to be got from such subject or
lesson by study. It always consists of facts and
relations among such facts. So the subject-matter of
method, as a subject of study, is the three processes, one
in the mind of the learner, one in the mind of the teacher,
and one a physical process, in their relation to the growth
in the life of the learner.
Definition of Method. Method is thus seen to be a
complex and comprehensive thing. Any definition to
be perfectly accurate, must include the various phases
of these three processes. The following, it seems,
does this: Method is the triple process in the act of
teaching by which the learner is induced to take the steps
from his real condition to a higher condition held up as
an ideal. This is the definition of method considered
in its broadest and most comprehensive sense, and
the sense in which its study will give the most help
to the teacher.
Classes of Method. Since there are three proc-
esses going on in the teaching act there are, in a
sense, three methods, the learner's method, the
teacher's method, and physical method. These three
will be studied somewhat in detail.
The Learner's Method. The learner's method is
the movement of his mind in gaining any point of
knowledge. The pupil's method is thus a living,
spiritual process internal to his life. Method from
this point of view is mental growth. That is to say,
210 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
it is the change of potential mental activity into actual
mental activity, and this is the essence of growth.
Illustration. If the child learns in a number
lesson that 8 -+- 7 = 15, the activity of his mind in
thinking the following steps is his method: (1) the
mind rethinks the number 8; (2) the mind rethinks
the number 7; (3) the mind thinks the number 8 and
7 together; (4) the mind thinks the name of the new
number. These four steps are the mind's process in
thinking the point of knowledge, and are, therefore,
the mind's method. This phase of method calls
attention to the fact that the thing to be watched and
emphasized in teaching is the change in the learner's
life by which he is constantly rising to a higher plane
Definition of the Learner's Method. The learner's
method may be characterized by the following defi-
1. The learner's method is the process of the
learner's mind in learning a thing.
2. The learner's method is the movement by
which his mind identifies itself with the thought and
feeling of the external world.
3. The learner's method is the mental activity
by which his mind makes the objective the subjective.
The objective means the external world, and the
subjective means the self. And the self means one's
original capacity to know, to feel, and to will, plus the
effect of one's experiences on this capacity.
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD. 211
4. The learner's method is the process in which
his mind goes from its real condition to an ideal con-
dition. One's real condition is his condition just as
he is at any time. His ideal condition is one different
from what he is in at any time, and which actually
has no existence except as an idea in the mind; hence
the name ideal. The ideal condition is not necessarily
a better condition than the real, but may be either a
better or worse condition.
The Teacher's Method. The teacher's method is
the thinking he does in teaching a thing. The teacher 's
method is a very important topic of study in the sub-
ject of method. It must be thoroughly understood
by one who is to succeed best.
First, the teacher must think the thought in the
point or points to be taught; that is, he must think
the subject-matter. Secondly, he must see in terms
of development of the learner's life the reasons for
teaching the subject-matter; that is, he must see the
purpose. Thirdly, the teacher must see the nearest
related knowledge possessed by the learner which he
can use as a foundation to build upon in teaching the
new point; that is, he must see the basis. Fourthly,
the teacher must see the activities the learner's mind
puts forth in mastering the points of truth in the
subject-matter; that is, he must see the steps. Lastly,
the teacher must see the means he may best employ
in leading the mind of the learner to take the steps in
mastering the subject-matter; that is, the teacher
212 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
must think out the devices. Thus the teacher in
teaching a lesson must think (1) the subject-matter;
(2) the purpose; (3) the basis; (4) the steps; and (5)
the devices. These five things every teacher does in
some sort of way in teaching every lesson. Some
think them out clearly and accurately, and some think
them out scarcely at all, and do not know that they
do even that much. A teacher can think the teaching
of a single point, or of a whole lesson, or of a whole
subject, under these five heads, and must do so with
more or less accuracy in teaching. It is worth our
while to study these five points further for the help
the study will give.
Subject-matter. In a general way the subject-
matter is that which is to be mastered by study. It
is the thought embodied in the thing studied by the
mind of the learner. In a particular lesson the sub-
ject-matter is just that to be got from the lesson
which the learner should have after the recitation.
In a particular subject, as grammar or history, the
subject-matter is just that to be got from the subject
which the learner should be in possession of after the
study of the subject. In this general sense the sub-
ject-matter of education is the whole world of thought.
This study is too general to be most helpful. A
closer study will reveal the fact that every subject-
matter is composed of two things: (1) The facts to
be taught. (2) The relation in which these facts are
to be taught or studied.
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD. 213
Illustration. Suppose the words, inquiry, dis-
course, and aspirant are to be taught. Now, a spelling
lesson might be made of it; and if it were a spelling
lesson, the subject-matter would be, the words, in-
quiry, discourse, and aspirant, as to their correct
written or printed forms. Thus the words, inquiry,
discourse, and aspirant are the facts to be taught or
studied, and "as to their correct 'written or printed
form " indicates the relation in which they are to be
taught or studied. But these same facts might be
used, and the lesson not be a spelling lesson at all.
If the relation in which they are to be studied or
taught is as to their correct pronunciation the lesson
would be one in orthoepy, and the subject-matter
would be, the words, inquiry, discourse, and aspirant
as to their correct pronunciation.
Further Illustration. Suppose the facts of the
revolution of the earth around the sun are taught,
who can say whether the lesson is one in astronomy
or one in geography? If, however, these are taught
in their relation to the distribution of life, climate
and relief forms on the earth's surface, the lesson at
once reveals itself as a geography lesson. From these
illustrations it is to be seen that a subject-matter
consists of (1) the facts to be taught or studied; and
(2) the relation in which these facts are to be con-
sidered. This relation is often called the organizing
principle of the subject-matter.
General Statement of Subject-matter. The state-
ment of subject-matter is not the subject-matter any
214 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
more than a word is an idea, or a sentence a thought.
The statement of the subject-matter bears the same
relation to the subject-matter that the word bears to
the idea and that the sentence bears to the thought;
that is, the statement bears the same relation to the
subject-matter that the symbol does to the thing
The general statement of a subject-matter is very
valuable to a teacher, whether it be of a single lesson,
or of a whole subject. It is helpful to the teacher
because it must do two things: (1) it must name the
facts to be taught, and (2) it must tell the relation in
which these facts are to be taught. Thus the general
statement of the subject-matter of any subject is a
perennial guide to the teacher in teaching that sub-
ject, in that it shows, in a general way, what to teach
and in what relation (how) to teach it.
Purpose. Purpose in reality is beginning and
end in every process. The purpose as idea the be-
ginning moves forward in the process to its reali-
zation the end. The purpose exists in the teacher's
mind, but it is to be realized in the life of the learner.
The purpose is the effect the mastery of the subject-
matter should have on the life of the child. In actual
teaching the teacher is to go from the subject-matter
by way of comparison of the effect the thinking the
subject-matter has on his own mind to its effect on
the child's life, which is the purpose. That is to say,
there is no way to tell the purpose of the subject-
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD. 215
matter except from the effect its mastery produces
on the child's life. The course of study the subject-
matter is usually provided for the teacher. So the
teacher must start with the subject-matter and find
out the purpose in teaching it. Much depends in the
teaching act upon how well the teacher does this. If
the teacher has definitely in mind just what he wants
to do in the lesson he will be drawn steadily and
constantly toward its accomplishment. A definite
purpose saves time, economizes energy, emphasizes
the important, organizes, and prevents aimless wan-
It will be seen that in teaching any lesson there
are two phases of the purpose: (1) to give knowledge
valuable for guidance in living; (2) to give mental
discipline; that is, to furnish a mental gymnastic to
the end that the mind may grow strong by exercising-
Basis. This is the learner's nearest related
knowledge to the new points to be taught, and upon
which the teacher may build in teaching the new
point. Basis is an important point in teaching. Many
errors are made in teaching because the learner has
not basis for learning the new point, or because the
teacher does not see the basis. Teaching in harmony
with the principle underlying basis, the mind naturally
goes to the unknown from the nearest related Jcnown,
means a progressive development of a subject, each
step becoming basis for the step succeeding it. There
216 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
are many violations of basis in teaching, as often
Illustration. If the lesson to be taught is that
5 + 4 = 9, the child must know the number 5 and
the number 4 as basis before he could learn that 5 +
4 = 9. If the teacher should attempt to teach this
lesson without having taught the numbers 5 and 4 he
would meet with the difficulty of insufficient basis.
Again, if a teacher attempts to teach the noun to a
class without the class having a definite knowledge of
an object, he will most surely meet a difficulty in the
basis. The teacher to teach well must see and choose
definitely his basis.
Steps. Steps are more or less complete move-
ments of the mind. They are mental things and in
the teaching act are in the life of the learner. They
are the advances of the mind in mastering the sep-
arate points of the lesson to be learned. Or in a
more general sense they are the advances of the mind
in mastering the various phases of a subject.
1 Illustration. If the lesson to be taught were that
17 8 = 9, the steps would be: 1. The advance of
the mind in rethinking the number 17. 2. The ad-
vance of the mind in rethinking the number 8. 3.
The advance of the mind in thinking the number 9 as
remainder. Again, if the lesson were, to teach the
definition of the triangle, after examining several
triangles, the steps would be: 1. The advance of
the mind in thinking a triangle is a figure. 2. The
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD. 217
advance of the mind in thinking a triangle has three
sides. 3. The advance of the mind in thinking a
triangle has three angles. 4. The advance of the
mind in synthesizing these points in the definition, A
triangle is a figure having three sides and three angles.
To know the steps the mind takes in working out
any new lesson is a matter of much importance to the
teacher. He must know something of the steps or
he cannot teach at all; and, other things equal, the
more clearly the teacher has thought out the steps,
the better will he teach the lesson.
Devices. The devices are the various things used
by the teacher to lead the mind of the learner to think
and feel in the manner desired. A synonym for
devices is the term means. Devices, or means, con-
stitute a very important factor in teaching. There is
opportunity for the exercise of rare judgment, tact,
and skill in the selection of devices. When it is
understood that questions, text-books, and reference
books, maps, globes, and school apparatus in general;
blocks, sticks, etc., are devices in teaching, some-
thing of their importance in school work becomes
evident. Devices are so important that among many,
method means nothing more than the manipulation of
devices. However important they are it must not be
lost sight of that they are always determined in the
light of the mental process they are to induce. They
are means to an end, and in nature the end is always,
more important than the means.
218 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
MetJtodas a Physical Process. It is, perhaps, using
the term method in its most popular significance to
think of it as meaning some physical process external
to the life of the learner. That is to say, it is using
the term in the sense in which most persons com-
monly use it in speaking and writing. This idea of
method is the one usually held by persons who have
not made any careful study of what the term really
ought to mean. There is a sort of indefiniteness in
the minds of such persons as to just what they do
mean by method. However, upon examination it will
be found usually that the idea that method is the
manner of doing some physical thing prevails, though
even this is held in mind more or less vaguely. Prom
thinking of method in this sense we have the following
terms; "Object Method, " "Concert Method, " "Con-
secutive Method," "Promiscuous Method," "Lecture
Method,' 1 "Socratic Method," and "Laboratory
These all refer to the manipulation of objects,
questions, and answers in the teaching act, and so
are to be studied briefly under method as a physical
The Object Method. By this is meant the handling
of objects by teacher and pupils in the process of
teaching. It is a good line of work, if used judicious-
ly. It has its proper place in teaching number work^
primary reading, nature study, primary geography,
and primary language.
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD. 219
The Concert Method. The concert method means
having students to answer questions, read, and speak
simultaneously in the recitation. There is much that
may be said against concert work, but very little to
l)e said for it. It is objectionable because it (1)
violates the law of self -activity; (2) stifles individual
effort and individual responsibility; (3) does not bring
out clear, definite answers or thinking; and (4) leads
to confusion, disorder, and chaotic class work. There
may possibly be instances in which concert work
may be used advantageously, but as a rule it should
The Consecutive Method. The consecutive method
of asking and answering in the recitation means be-
ginning at some point, the head of the class, or at the
name beginning with A, and proceeding in some
regular order back to the point of starting. In pro-
ceeding in recitation this way the students know
pretty well when the "turn" of each one will come.
This method, like the preceding one, has many things
against it, but little to recommend it. It is objection-
able because it leads to (1) habits of inattention; (2)
disorder and disorganization of the class; (3) habits of
idleness; and (4) bad methods of study. However
good a student may be, if, when he has answered a
question, he knows to a certainty that he will not be
called upon again for some time, the tendency is for
him to relax his attention. If the student is not a
,good one, the tendency in this kind of work is for him
220 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
to become worse, and since he is not called upon to-
attend closely he is prone to do something else, there-
by causing disorder and disorganization. Idleness
in the class is a direct result of inattention, and bad
habits of study result from the student's being able
to prepare just those points in the lesson which he
has reckoned will come to him.
Promiscuous Method. The promiscuous method
of asking questions and receiving answers refers to
distributing the questions and receiving answers
from students promiscuously. No student knows to
whom the answer to the question will fall. This
method unlike the two preceding has much to be said
for it and little or nothing against it. It is desirable
because (1) it fosters habits of attention and concen-
tration; (2) it is flexible and gives the teacher the best
opportunities for meeting the needs of individual
students; (3) it fosters habits of order and organiza-
tion in the class work; and (4) it tends to industrious
habits, and right methods of study. By the use of
the promiscuous method students are held constantly
to attending to the question under consideration, to
the careful preparation of the lesson as a whole, and
to order and unity in the class. As a rule, the pro-
miscuous method is certainly the best for class work.
Lecture Method. The lecture method refers U>
teaching by means of talks, or lectures. This method,
perhaps, has its advantages and disadvantages. It is
certainly not adapted to all kinds of school work, and
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD. 221
probably not adapted to any kind of school work if
used exclusively. There are, however, some phases
of school work which may be taught profitably by
talks, or lectures. To elementary school work the
lecture method is not at all adapted, and but very
poorly adapted to secondary school work. In the
first eight years of the child's school life he must be
taught differently than by this method. That stays
with the child which he has an opportunity to see,
hear, and think about. This, however, is not to be
construed to mean that oral teaching should not
be done in primary history, primary geography,
nature work, etc. If the lecture method has any
legitimate place in school work it is in the college and
university. However it may seem theoretically, it
remains a fact that those things which are digged out
by the student, recited upon hi the class, and dis-
cussed by questions and answers are the things which
in the end stay with him and do him good. Certainly
the lecture method in the average teacher's school
work is, to say the least, to be used sparingly, and
with much caution when used at all.
The Socratic Method. This method takes its name
from Socrates, a Greek philosopher and teacher, born
469 B. C. It is sometimes called the developing
method. It proceeds by the employment of subtle
questions to lead the student to think what it is de-
sired for him to think without telling him anything.
"The Socratic method, more or less perfectly under-
222 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
stood, has had great influence upon professional
pedagogy. In many schools for the professional
training of teachers, and in many schools in charge
of teachers professionally trained, systematic ques-
tioning of this sort is looked upon as ideal teaching;
and there is no lack of conscientious endeavor to
prepare for use in recitation, series of questions which
shall lead the child's mind to take the logical steps
which given occasion requires. One who doubts the
value of such systematic questioning may usually be
converted by hearing a single typical recitation con-
ducted by a master of the art. The power of such a
recitation to touch, move, chasten and direct the soul
is so evident, that if Socrates and Plato had taught us
nothing but how to do such work their fame as
teachers would be justified." It is noteworthy that
the "Socratic Method" is diametrically opposed to
the "Lecture Method."
The Laboratory Method. This is also often called
the "Scientific Method," or "Inductive Method, "and
it means a procedure in which the student is lead to
investigate and think for himself. It is opposed to
taking things on mere authority without investiga-
tion, and to the text-book method. It proceeds by
leading the student to deal with the actual material of
study rather than to deal with what some one has
said about it. In botany, studied in this way, the
student deals with plants; in zoology, with animals; in
grammar, with sentences and parts of sentences.
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD. 223
This method has much to recommend it. 1. It fosters
habits of free inquiry and free investigation. 2. It
is the mind's natural way of learning. 3. It makes
the student self -directive and self-helpful. 4. It
fixes with the student right methods of study. 5. It
gives the student a critical attitude of mind. All
these are very desirable characteristics for a student
Comparison of Teacher's and PupiVs Method.
These two methods are alike as follows: 1. They
are both spiritual processes. 2. The mind of the
learner and the mind of the teacher in general go
through the same process in thinking the thing to be
learned. 3. Both the teacher and the pupil keep in
mind to some extent the purpose of the process in the
These two methods are different as follows: 1.
The teacher, in addition to thinking the truths to be
learned, must think the learner's thinking of them.
2. The teacher must think out the means or devices
to be used in leading the learner to think the desired
points of truth. 3. While both the teacher and the
pupil keep in mind the purpose, the teacher sees it
definitely, or should do so, while the pupil only sees
it vaguely. The teacher's method thus includes more
than the learner's.
Two Views of Method. The foregoing study sug-
gests to us that there are two views of method. It is
unfortunate that educational writers hold these twa
224 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
views, as considerable confusion prevails because of
this fact. One class of educators, those who have
studied method least, mean by method simply the
physical process in the act of teaching. A second
class, those who have been special students of method,
mean by method the triple process in the act of teach-
Comparison of the Two Views. In our study of
method we may call these two views respectively the
popular view and the special view. The popular view
will thus designate method as the manipulation of ex-
ternal means, or devices, and the special view will
designate method as the triple process.
Thinking of method according to the popular view
constantly places the mind's emphasis upon some-
thing external to the life of the learner. This has in
the past led to much that was bad in teaching and is
still doing so. The teacher loses sight thus of the
fact that it is in the learner's life that the educating
process is to be carried on. He is prone to make the
manipulating, the text-book, or some petty scheme
of teaching an end instead of a means. Every ques-
tion that arises concerning teaching must be settled
in the light of the effect upon the life of the learner.
The ultimate question is, How does it affect the life of
the learner? The process in which the mind of the
learner masters the new point of knowledge is
the point of prime importance in the teaching act and
the thing always to be emphasized in the study of the
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD. 225
act of teaching. The popular view of method leads
to almost hopeless confusion. Everyone holding this
view who happens to use some different device, or
means, in teaching calls it his method and gives it a
name. Since there is an almost infinite number of
devices which may be used, there thus arises an al-
most infinite number of methods, which no teacher
can or desires to keep informed upon. This leads to
a hopelessly chaotic condition of things in the study
The popular view of method has lead to much dis-
paragement of the study of method among persons
who should be friendly to its study. These are often-
times persons who are very good thinkers, but who
have not given special study to method. It is a com-
mon remark among this class of teachers that one
may study method in a subject at the expense of a
knowledge of that subject. The depreciating remarks
made about method, which arise from the popular
view of method, are a source of much harm to the
profession of teaching. This is true, because many
persons who would otherwise make a careful study
of method and would receive the benefit that must
come to the teacher thereby, are kept from beginning
the study by this disparaging attitude on the part of
some teachers. It may be safely said that there is
need for no one thing among teachers more than an
intensely professional spirit. It seems strange that
some teachers take pleasure in saying depreciating
226 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
things about method work. It is, however, probably
to be explained from a misconception of method. I
have never yet heard the first person speak depre-
ciatingly of method, who had been a student of the
The special view may be proven to be the better
view. This is the argument: A thing is good ac-
cordingly as it realizes the purpose which brought it
into existence. Method as a subject came into ex-
istence to supply the want for something, the study
of which would help the teacher to do better work in
his daily teaching. Accordingly, that thing whose
study helps the teacher most is the best. It has
already been shown that the study of method as a
triple process is more helpful to the teacher than the
study of method as the manner of manipulating some
external means, or device. Therefore, the special
view is the better view of method.
No Danger in Too Much Study. It is not difficult
to see that there is no danger of a teacher's devoting
too much time to the study of method when one takes
the proper view of method. The teacher can not
study the process through which the mind goes in
mastering any point of knowledge until he has the
knowledge himself. For instance, the teacher can
not see the mental steps the mind of the learner takes
in learning the definition of an adjective without
knowing the definition of an adjective himself. To
know the method in teaching the definition of an
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD. 227
adjective is to know two things: 1. The definition of
an adjective. 2. The process the mind naturally
employs in learning the definition of an adjective.
No teacher can rationally and well teach the adjective
who does not know both.
Further Illustration. In the teaching of history
this point becomes quite evident. The teacher who
knows method in history knows these two things: 1.
The events of mankind in their relation to the struggle
of the race for higher life. That is to say, he must
know history. 2. The natural processes of the mind
in learning history. No teacher can teach history at
all without a knowledge of the first, and it is equally
clear to any person who will think, that no one can
teach history well without a knowledge of the second.
So this question reduces itself to the following:
It is not possible for a teacher to study method too
much, unless it is possible for a teacher to know
too much about his subjects and to know too well the
mind's natural process in learning those subjects.
Factors Determining Method. About twenty years
ago one of the leading educators of this country said
' ' The law in the mind and the thought in the thing studied
determine the method." This statement of this truth
can not well be improved upon. It shows that the
two following things are factors in determining
the method to be pursued in teaching any subject
1. The laiv in the mind.
228 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
2. The thought in the thing studied.
That these two factors are the ones which deter-
mine every rational method makes the above state-
ment a universal truth.
The Law in the Mind. The law in the mind has
reference to the general truths of mind the forms of
activity common to minds.
Holding in mind that method is the triple activity
hi the process of teaching, it can easily be seen that
this process must be largely what it is because of
what the mind can do; that is, because of the laws
governing mental activity.
Again, the method would be different in teaching
the same subject-matter to a child of eight and to an
adult, because it is a law of the mind that the mind of
the child of eight could sense-perceive, remember,
and imagine accurately, but that he could not reason
accurately, while the adult should be able to do so.
The Thought in the Thing. Each thing is the
embodiment of thought; that is, each thing in the uni-
verse is capable of suggesting a thought to the mind.
"Evangeline," the rose, the lily, is each the embodi-
ment of thought.
Again remembering what method is, it can read-
ily be seen that the process is different in teaching
different things, and so the method is different.
The process in teaching the noun as to definition
and in teaching "Maud Muller" as to interpretation
is widely different, because of the difference in the
THE PROCESS IN THE TEACHING ACT, METHOD. 229
thought embodied in them. And since method is
the triple process in the act of teaching, the method
is widely different, the cause of the difference being
the difference in the thought in the two things.
Thus these two things, the mind of the learner,
and the subject-matter, determine the method.
The whole study of general method should em-
phasize the truth that the essential thing in teaching is
opening up the ivay for the realization of the child's in-
"Truth is within ourselves; it takes no rise
From outward things, whate'er you may believe.
There is an inmost center in us all,
Where truth abides in fullness, and around,
Wall upon wall, the gross flesh hems it in,
******* And to know
Rather consists in opening out a way
Whence the imprisoned splendor may escape,
Than in effecting entry for a light
Supposed to be without."
The Nature of the Recitation. The word, recitation,
is of Latin origin and literally means a reading aloud.
As the term is used now in connection with school
work something of the literal meaning may be found
in it. But there is more in the recitation as thought
of now than the mere reading or speaking aloud. A
written recitation might be conducted in which the
original notion of the recitation is scarcely to be found
The recitation is the school process in which the
learner rethinks what he has learned in previous
study and communicates this to the teacher and his
fellow students. This, however, is not all there is in
the recitation, but constitutes a considerable part of
the process. In addition to the student's process
of rethinking and communicating to the teacher, and
other students, what he has previously learned, there
are in the recitation the suggestions, tests, directions,
and encouragement by the teacher.
The recitation is the crowning process of school
work. It is in the recitation more than in any other
place that the learner is stimulated to the effort of
THE RECITATION. 231
learning. Good recitations are the test of good school
Purposes of the Recitation. The following are the
purposes of the recitation:
1. To furnish a process in which the mind of the
learner and the mind of the teacher may come into
living touch with each other.
2. To test the learner on his preparation and
understanding of the subject-matter of the lesson.
3. To supplement the knowledge of the subject-
matter the student has gained in his preparation.
4. To give the learner the habit of right methods
5. To approve, encourage, inspire, and stimulate
the learner in his work.
Vital Touch of Learner's and Teacher's Mind. In
order that instruction may be most effective the mind
of the learner must come under the influence of the
mind of the teacher with conditions as favorable for
learning as possible. This is needed that in the act
of teaching the life of the teacher may come into
closest touch with the life of the pupil.
That the conditions may be the most favorable
the class should recite in a room separate from that
in which the school is accustomed to sit and study.
Since this is not possible in so many schools, the next
best thing is to have the pupils to occupy a position
in the room as nearly isolated from the other students
as possible. Separate recitation rooms, though, are
232* STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
always the best, for in them all diverting influences
can be reduced to the minimum, and the conditions
for learning be best maintained.
Testing on the Preparation of the Lesson. Good
teaching requires that some definite thing be de-
manded daily of the learner. And the requirement
of tests on the preparation and understanding of what
is demanded is imperative. The responsibility of
getting up before the class and stating to the class
and the teacher what he has learned is a constant
spur to the student in his work. Negligence and
looseness in study always result from the assignment
of lessons upon which students never recite. There
is no surer way to induce bad habits of study than to
assign lessons and then not test students as to their
preparation and understanding of these lessons. And
the tendency is in this direction, even though one has
the best students to be found. If students are not
good there is nothing in such work to make them
better, on the other hand they become worse. The
responsibility of proper preparation is brought home
to the student in no other way so well as in the class
room at recitation. Every one knows how prone he
is to neglect work which he has planned to do because
of a lack of a definite responsibility. The tests in the
recitation fix and maintain a definite responsibility.
The testing to be most helpful must be accurate,
critical, and just. Students are often deceived in
thinking they have prepared well their lessons when
they have not, because the testing is poorly done in
the recitation. It frequently happens that a student
makes a recitation which is worth nearly nothing,
but the teacher by smoothing it over and patching it
up makes the student think he has done something
creditable. The student is thus misled and is per-
fectly willing for the teacher to do the same thing
again. If a student neglects to prepare his lesson,
he should be brought face to face with his ignorance
which might have been removed.
Supplementing a Knoivledge of the Lesson. It is
not to be expected that the student will at all times
completely master the subject-matter of the lesson.
Points more or less vague to the learner or of which
he has obtained a wrong idea will often become clear
and correct to him by recitations of other students
and the illustrations of the teacher. And many times
points which the student has not been able to work
out will be cleared up to him upon the teacher's asking
him questions which lead to their solution. And
again there are points which the student can get from
no other source than from the teacher. These the
teacher may give directly to the student and save
time and guessing on his part.
It has been stated as a principle of pedagogy that
the teacher should never tell a student anything ivhich he
can find out for himself. This statement emphasizes
an important pedagogical truth, no doubt, for the
tendency certainly is among teachers to tell students
234 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
many things which they should be led to work out
for themselves, as the easiest way out of it, when the
student fails to respond properly to a question. But
to follow the principle literally would also lead to
.grave errors. For instance, if a child were standing
by the fire and without his knowledge his clothes
should catch fire, he would find it out without being
told sooner or later. But no one would think of wait-
ing for him to find it out so.
One purpose of the recitation certainly is to sup-
plement the knowledge the student gets from his
preparation of the lesson.
Giving an Insight into Right Methods of Study. It
often happens that students are willing to prepare
their lessons, but that they do not know how to study.
The teacher has opportunity in the recitation in two
ways to show the student how to study:
1. He can show the student how to study by his
requirements in the daily work of the recitation. If
the student is constantly held accurately to the care-
ful preparation of each point assigned, he will soon
come to understand what it means to prepare a lesson;
and from what is worked out on the separate points,
he will see what is to be done with each point by way
2. In the recitation from time to time the teacher
may take the points one by one and show the students
just how to proceed in their preparation. This the
teacher must do occasionally, if he would have
THE RECITATION. 235
his students use their time and energy to the best
Approving, Encouraging, Inspiring, and Stimulat-
ing. Young people and old, too, are oftentimes
gladdened by a word of approval. The teacher's op-
portunity for approving of that worthy of approval,
and disapproving of that not worthy of approval is a
means in his hands of working much good. Teachers
are too ready to disapprove of the bad and to let the
meritorious pass by as if unnoticed. Every child is
capable of something worthy, and should be made to
feel so. Just approval in the recitation is a perfectly
legitimate incentive, and may be used to do much
good by the careful, sympathetic teacher.
Pupils frequently have spells of despondency and
discouragement in their school work. This comes
about from extravagant ideas of what a pupil should
accomplish, or a somewhat mistaken idea of native
ability, etc. In the recitation the teacher has an
opportunity to dispel the despondency and encourage
by placing before the students healthful ideals of
The teacher by taking the soul's hunger at its
worth and so teaching as to stimulate and quicken it
has an opportunity to inspire the learner to a life of
search for truth and righteousness. And the teacher
who can so teach that his pupils will be inspired to
study his subjects after leaving school, in the pursuit
of wisdom and virtue, is a most successful teacher.
236 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
The Law of the Recitation. The law of the reci-
tation is the same as the law of the school as a whole;
that is, the law of unity. Without unity between the
teacher and pupils the recitation could not exist, but
it often actually exists with various degrees of unity.
When the minds of all the students are following the
mind of the teacher as the recitation progresses there
is ideal unity. To approach this condition of things
is always to be sought; and, other things equal, the
recitation will be successful in the degree to which
this is attained. Either the pupils or the teacher may
break the law of unity in the recitation.
The student may break it by failing to give atten-
tion when he ought to do so. Whispering breaks the
unity always, and while not in itself necessarily
wrong, is a positive sin when engaged in during the
recitation. It is to be deplored that there is a teacher
in the land who can not see the question of whispering
in school in its true light, and who does not set the
stamp of disapproval upon it. It is absolutely inde-
fensible as a practice. There are many other ways
of breaking the unity of the recitation.
The teacher may break the unity by conducting
the recitation in such a way that there can not by any
possibility be unity, as indicated by the following
"Here is a picture taken from real life: School-
room of two grades (seventh and eighth), of about
twenty pupils each. Good teacher, as the world goes;
THE RECITATION. 237
lesson in denominate numbers by the seventh grade.
Teacher directs one boy to pass to the board and
solve the first problem; another the second; and so on
till the ten problems are used. Then, commencing
again with the first problem, re-assigns the ten prob-
lems severally to the next ten pupils. A few pupils
remain without work, and these are given selected
problems to work at the desk, the board all being
occupied. The teacher now steps back to talk to the
visitor while waiting developments. Things always
develop rapidly under such circumstances; and soon
the teacher is needed by a girl working at her desk,
where teacher and pupil discuss the problem. Note
here that it is all right for teacher and pupil to talk
during the recitation, because the teacher makes the
rules: two pupils must not talk; except to help each
other, as they say. And this they soon do, for the
bright girl points the way to the dull boy. The first
boy has done his sum; and, rather than waste time,
punches the fire, which is already too hot. Another
bright lad cultivates the fantasy and freehand draw-
ing; while some laggards toil on, with and without
help, hopeless, and despairing of victory before time
is called. The first boy explains to those who have
done their work, while others toil on. Fill out the
picture at your leisure. In all it was a splendid dis-
play of self -activity, free thought and free speech. "
The law of unity in the recitation demands short
recitation periods. When the minds of the pupils
238 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
become fatigued to any great extent, it is impossible
to maintain the unity. Forty minutes is probably
long enough for any recitation period and in the case
of young students it should, of course, be much less,
its length depending upon the ability of the pupils to
give sustained concentrated attention.
The Teaclier's Preparation for the Recitation. No
teacher can do his best work without making daily
preparation for his recitations. This preparation by
the teacher is called lesson planning. Thus lesson
planning means the process, on the part of the
teacher, of working through each lesson a short time
before teaching it with the view of teaching it to some
particular class. In short, it is the teacher's im-
mediate preparation for teaching each lesson. Daily
lesson planning is thus an absolute necessity to the
teacher who will do the best teaching of which he is
capable. No teacher, then, should ever go before his
class to teach a lesson without having planned it for
this particular recitation.
This may seem too much of a requirement to
some teachers, since it will of a necessity demand
many sacrifices of them. To those who object on this
ground, it may be said that the most successful
school work demands just this sacrifice and more, and
that those who are unwilling to give it should relin-
quish their claims as successful teachers to those
who are willing. Also, according to the law of the
survival of the fittest these very teachers in the strug-
gle for excellency will be pushed to the rear that their-
places may be occupied by those more worthy.
And daily preparation will not be found to de-
mand so much sacrifice as it at first appears. The
teacher will grow in skill in lesson planning in a short-
time to such an extent that he will find that he can
plan each lesson in a very few minutes. This of
course presumes that he has a fair degree of scholar-
ship in the subjects which he teaches.
No better means exists to arouse interest and
maintain it in the class than that of planning each
lesson. It works out as follows: the teacher having
planned his lesson, as a general plans a battle, comes
to the recitation full of expectation and interest to see
if all things will work out as they were thought in the
planning. The pupils, according to the law of sym-
pathy, catch the interest and expectation from the
teacher, and in turn manifest an intense interest.
This is but one, however, of the many benefits which
come to the teacher from lesson planning.
But the teacher's intentions may be excellent,
and yet he may not succeed well because he has no
systematic way of planning lessons. In other words-
the teacher may see the necessity of lesson planning,
but may not know how to plan a lesson. It will be
remembered that under the head of the * ' Teacher's
Method" it has been shown that in teaching a lesson
the teacher must think through (l)the subject-matter-
(2) the purpose; (3) the basis; (4) the steps; and (5) the
240 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
devices. Systematic lesson planning consists in
thinking out as accurately as possible just these five
things before attempting to teach a lesson.
Some teachers say one can depend upon the in-
spiration of the moment in teaching and that lesson
planning is not necessary. But the worst failures as
teachers are those who attempt to depend upon the
inspiration of the moment and find that the moment
comes and goes without the inspiration. Inspiration
is not a thing so easily got as to come along to help
out the teacher who has not prepared himself for his
recitation. Inspiration results from properly pre-
paring one's self for his class work.
Manner of Conducting the Recitation. The manner
of conducting the recitation is a point of sufficient
importance to repay careful study, for upon it de-
pends to a considerable degree the success of the
teacher. The teacher who has a mild, pleasant way
of leading his students in recitation inspires them
with confidence, respect and love; while the loud,
ooisterous, explosive teacher fails in securing these
-very necessary attitudes of his pupil's minds.
Recitations should be both oral and written. The
oral should doubtless predominate, but they should
be varied occasionally with written recitations. This
is because the pupils will be called upon in life both
in and out of school work to communicate their
thought and feeling in both oral and written dis-
course. To know is good, but it is not entirely suf-
THE RECITATION. 241
ficient. It was said a long time ago that he who does
not know is an ignoramus, and that he who knows,
but can not communicate what he knows and feels is
a dumb statue.
All of the following ways of manipulating ques-
tions and answers have been used in conducting the
recitation, and have been called methods of conducting
it: 1. The concert method. 2. The consecutive
method. 3. The promiscuous method. 4. The lec-
ture method. 5. The Socratic method.
The various so called methods of conducting the
recitation have already been studied (See page 218),
and their merits and demerits pointed out. So while
they should be rethought, they will not be rediscussed
Assignments. The assignment is a proper topic of
study in connection with the recitation, for it is the
teacher's most effective means of stimulating the
students to properly prepare for the recitation.
There is no other device in the hands of the teacher
that may be used so effectively as assignments. Clear,
definite, logical assignments bring clear, definite,
logical thinking in the recitation. On the other hand
bad, indefinite assignments bring unsatisfactory
recitations and lead to bad habits of thinking. As a
rule a teacher will get just about as good recitations
as are good his assignments. The teacher by skillful
assignments can lead his pupils to pursue almost any
desired line of thinking.
242 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
Every assignment in any subject should place
before the class a definite problem for solution, and
it must be stated in such a way that the learner will
see what is required of him; and it must suggest the
general plan to be pursued in solving the problem.
An assignment might be bad in any of these three
Many of us can remember when the teacher said
.as the assignment, " Take the next lesson." And it
is also easily remembered that we frequently did not
know how to take it, when to take it, nor where to
take it, and that we were little better off after taking
than before taking.
The assignment is a most powerful means in the
hands of the conscientious teacher for doing his stu-
dents lasting good.
Common Errors in Conducting the Recitation. The
following are some of the most prevalent errors which
teachers are prone to fall into and which they should
studiously avoid: 1. Giving assignments not suf-
ficiently definite. 2. Permitting students to wander
from the question. 3. Repeating questions before
giving students time to answer. 4. Repeating the
answer. 5. Calling on the student before asking
the question. 6. Talking too much. 7. Calling too
much upon the brighter students for recitation.
Indefinite assignments were studied in the pre-
ceding topic and nothing further is necessary here
unless it is to emphasize what was said there. The
THE RECITATION. 248
importance of definite, logical assignments in teach-
ing, however, can not be well overestimated.
To have the student answer just the question
asked and stop then, teaches him to talk to the point
and stop when he has finished it. But to talk to the
point and stop when one has reached it is the charac-
teristic of a well trained mind. Other things equal,
that teacher who holds the students to just the
question asked does his students by far the most
good. And that student who answers just the ques-
tion asked is as a rule the best thinker.
The habit of repeating the question before giving
students time to answer fosters habits of inattention,
and leads to bad habits of study. The student does
not feel the necessity of giving concentrated habits of
attention since he has a right to expect the teacher to
repeat the question. Also, the tendency on the part
of the teacher is to make the answer to the question a
little easier each time he asks it, and this leads to
poor preparation and bad habits of study.
There seems to be an almost incontrollable habit
among teachers to repeat the answer to a question
immediately when the student has given it. It is in
itself not only unnecessary, but positively harmful.
It tends to habits of inattention on the part of the
students in the class who are not reciting. Why need
they pay respectful attention to the student who is
reciting, if the teacher will repeat the answer once,
twice, or often three times?
244 STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
By calling on the student before asking the ques-
tion, opportunity is afforded the other students in the
class to relax their attention. If the teacher asks the
question, hesitates momentarily, then calls OH some
one for the answer, the attention of the whole class
will be better held; for no one knows but that he will
be called on to recite.
Talking too much is perhaps the most general
of all the common errors in conducting a recitation.
Many teachers literally talk their students to sleep
and some almost talk their students to death. Too
much talking kills interest; violates the students' self -
activity; fosters bad habits of study; stifles individual
endeavor, and robs the student of the pleasure of his
Teachers have to watch themselves to avoid falling
into the habit of calling too much on the brighter
students. It is not just to the weaker ones who
usually need the opportunity of reciting more than
their more fortunate companions.
Activities of the mind, 74.
Aim in life, 31.
Relation of these aims, 32.
All knowing indirect, 76.
Aptitude, Natural, 173.
Laws of, 98.
Classes of, 68.
Classes of, 63.
of mind, 63.
Beginning point, 13.
Child Study and curriculum,
Method of forming, 105.
Aspects of, 107.
Logical steps in, 106.
Consecutive method, 219.
Function of, 66.
Comparison of teacher's and
pupil's method, 223.
Complete living, 25.
Meaning of, 122.
Origin of, 123.
Growth of, 125.
Enriching the, 127.
A rational, 129.
Test of, 129.
First step in applying, 129.
Order of importance of
these lines, 130.
Second step in applying,
Changes in suggested by
child study, 146.
Daily preparation, 169, 238.
Laws of, 110.
Devices, 217. [tions, 17.
Differentiation of institu-
in the school, 19. [ing, 134.
Disciplinary value of learn-
Discriminating and unifying,
Diverting influences, 194.
Duties as a citizen, 141.
as a teacher, 149.
What main aim is not, 33.
STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
Primary aim of, 33.
Purpose of, 25-37, 128.
Knowledge of, 166.
Relational order of, 131.
Elements of the school, 21.
Errors in conducting reci-
Feeling, function of, 76.
Greek and Latin, 144.
Kinds of school, 176.
Main line of school, 184.
Hate, 79. [30.
Harmony of the four views,
Habits of activity, 157.
Misfortune of bad, 38.
Hints from nature, 35.
Advance over memory, 102.
Classes of, 103. [30.
Importance of the right view,
Aspects of, 112.
Development of, 84.
Stages in, 85.
Basis of, 85.
Distinguishing element in
Advance in the, 118.
Knowledge giving value of
Most valuable, 145.
of laws of life, 161.
of methods, 167.
of purpose of education,
Law, Fundamental, 178.
Source of the, 179
Aspects of, 180.
Law of the recitation, 236.
Law in the mind, 228.
Laboratory method, 222.
Learner's method, 209, 210.
Value of, 133.
Disciplinary and knowledge
giving value, 134.
Lecture method, 220.
of occupation, 171.
Magnetism, Personal, 174.
Management of school, 176.
Importance of, 176.
Kinds of, 176.
Mastery of circumstances, 174.
Classes of, 94.
Law of, 97.
Nature of, 208.
Subject-matter of, 208.
Definition of, 209.
Classes of, 209.
Learner's, 209, 210.
As a physical process, 218
Comparison of teacher's
and pupil's, 223-
Two views of, 223.
Factors determining, 227.
Methods of study, giving in-
sight into, 234.
Moral character, 28, 153.
Motives, Pure, 197.
Causes of, 52.
Undesirability of, 53.
Rules for prevention of, 53.
Object method, 218.
Order of importance of these
Physical nature of the child,
Power of sentiment, 183.
Practice in the art of teach-
Daily, 169, 238.
Testing on, 232.
Problem, The, 25.
Processes in teaching act, 207.
Promiscuous method, 220.
Punishments, School, 203.
of education, 33, 25, 128.
of the recitation, 231.
of the school, 25.
Rational freedom, 27.
Rearing of a family, 139.
Classes of, 113.
Implicit and explicit, 114.
Inductive and deductive,
Nature of, 230.
Purpose of, 231.
Manner of conducting, 240.
Common errors in conduct-
Right and wrong, knowledge
Right ideas of life, 198.
Nature of, 13.
Origin of, 16.
Differentiation in, 19.
Elements of, 21.
Purpose of, 25.
School an organization, 177.
School government, 176.
Schoolroom, Purpose of, 190.
Presence of learner, 190.
STUDIES IN PEDAGOGY.
Comfort of teacher and pu-
Senses and sense organs, 57.
Characteristics of, 87.
Classes of, 87.
Aspects of, 57.
Comparison of general and
Classes of, 91.
Object of, 91.
Sentiment, Power of, 183.
Social influences, 201.
Socratic method, 221.
Source of the law, 179.
Spending leisure time, 143.
in applying test, 129, 132.
Study, No danger of too
Student habits, Energetic, 169.
of method, 208.
General statement of, 213.
Supplementing a knowledge
of lesson, 233.
Sympathy with children, 171.
Importance of, 149.
Duties of, 149.
Characteristics of, 152.
Teacher's method, 211.
Teaching act, 207.
Processes in, 207.
Test of curriculum, 129.
Testing on preparation of
Things men are employed in,
Thought in the thing, 228.
Thoughts of teachers, 163.
Thoughts of thinkers, 164.
of teacher's and learner's
Unity, 23, 178.
between teacher and learner,
between learner's ideal and
real self, 186, 197.
in the organization as a
Restoration of, 203.
Fundamental law, 178.
Source of, 179.
Aspects of, 180.
teacher's mind, 231.
Functions of, 83.
Study of, 83.
Unifying and discriminating, Willing, 80.
75. Wise and virtuous men and
Vital touch of learner's and