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wanted. They should then, for instance, pay attention to all the countries on the coasts, noting the river mouths, etc. ; and thus by degrees fill up the whole, so as to have a correct representation of it in their minds, and know at once the bearing and position of every county on the map.
Every school should be provided with a compass, the teacher pointing out that the needle does not rest due north and south; but drawing a line parallel to it when at rest, and knowing the number of degrees which the north point of the needle is from the true north, he will very easily manage to teach them to draw a line nearly due north and south. By placing it on the floor, and having explained its directive power that in this latitude the north point is now about 22° 30' to the west of north— then describing a circle and drawing a diameter parallel to the needle, it will be easy to set off an arc of about 22° towards the east of the north end and towards the west of the end nearest the south, and a diameter drawn through these points will be the true meridian. The teacher of course will by degrees call their attention to the difference of counties in physical character - in mineral wealth -- whether agricultural or manufacturing—why the seats of our manufacturing industry should be in those counties where coal and iron are found — how the agriculture or commerce of a country is likely to be affected by geological character — how this bears upon the character of its inhabitants.
A globe, however small, is extremely useful, and from which, among other things, not to be learned from maps, children may be made to understand how the sun comes upon the meridian of different places at different times, or perhaps speaking more correctly, how the meridians of different places come in succession under the sun that the time of a place to the east of them is before, and to the west after the time of the place where they are that all the meridians pass in succession under the sun in twentyfour hours; and this being understood, it may at once be explained how a degree in longitude corresponds to four minutes in time, etc.; the arithmetic of it they must of course be made to work out.
In the school here there are several mechanical contrivances for giving them a correct idea of the two motions of the earth, on its axis, and in its orbit, and its different positions at the different seasons of the year; also to illustrate what is meant by the hemisphere on which the rays of light fall, and that only one half of a sphere can be illuminated at the same time this is shown by pieces of thread, supposed to represent rays of light, fastened to a globe of wood (the sun), and then being stretched over a smaller globe (the earth), it is made visible to the eye what part of the earth will be in the light, and what in the dark; and that if made to fall upon a plane surface, the sun would shine throughout its whole extent at the same time.
It is not sufficient merely to tell the children to look at a map and point out any particular place upon it; this does not make geography an exercise of the mind, which everything they learn ought to be. They ought to be made to understand that a map is constructed on a particular plan and scale : that if one country is larger than another it will occupy a larger space in proportion upon the map-to give them oɔular proof of this by showing them the different sizes of the counties on a map of England — that if two places one hundred miles apart are one inch from each other on the map, two places four hundred miles apart would be four inches, and so on to show them how to find the distance between places, if on the same meridian, by taking the sum or difference of latitude, and turning the degrees into miles; if on the same parallel of latitude, by finding the difference of longitude, and multiplying the length of a degree of longitude in that latitude by it-or by applying a thread to the map, and measuring the distance between the two placés -- to apply this to the degrees of latitude, and point out why we cannot apply it to degrees of longitude.
If a school is provided with a variety of maps, then at. tention should be drawn to the different scales on which they are made, and why a map, perhaps of Europe or of England, is much larger than one of the world; asking them such questions as, why is not the equator found on the map of Europe ? Why does not a map of England
extend from the equator to the pole ? Simple questions of this kind puzzle them very much, while at the same time they instruct them, and I have known children, after having been learninig geography for some time, look at a map of Syria, for instance, or the Holy Land, for some minutes for the equator or the pole, and wonder why they could not find it. In looking at a map on the wall of the school, of any country not reaching to the equator or poles, they are generally made to apply a carpenter's rule to the side of the map, and make out the scale upon which it is made; and then mark, below or above, as the case may be, on the wall where the equator would be, and in like manner to show the pole to which all the meridians ought to converge.
The being able to make out the difference of time from the difference of longitude, gives rise to a set of questions instructive in arithmetic, as well as in geography. The schoolmaster looking at the clock, observes, perhaps it is eleven; what is it in London (Greenwich) —what at Yarmouth in Norfolk? What is the difference in time between Yarmouth and the Land's End — what the difference in time between the extreme east and west of any country the map of which they may be looking at. They will then be directed to look at the map, and work out the results themselves.
Short lessons of a conversational kind should occasionally be given, pointing out the mountain chains — their relative heights in the different parts of the world, and the directions in which they run — the course and length of the principal rivers, comparing them with our own — their directions, and the seas into which they empty themselves
the commercial advantages which one country has over another, either from its position, its rivers being navigable far inland, projecting arms from the sea "running far into it
— showing them the advantages of England, Scotland, Ireland, Holland, etc., in this respecttidal rivers, such as the Thames and the Scheldt; and hence such towns as London and Antwerp; pointing out the coal and iron districts in England, and how they have in consequence become the manufacturing districts that settlers in new
countries invariably fix themselves on the banks of large rivers, or in parts of the country where branches of the sea run up far inland, instancing America, etc.; the reasons why they do this. Also such things as the quantity of water discharged by them compared, for instance, with the Thames, taking this as unity, that by the Danube is 65, the Volga 80, the Nile 250, the Amazon 1300, etc.; then the kind of reasoning which such facts suggests to the mind.
Again, explain the two motions of the earth — one of rotation on its axis - the other of progress in its orbit; what would be the effect, as regards day and night, if the rotation on its axis were stopped at any given time—for a day—for a week-for a year, etc.-how it would affect the vegetable world—the stability of bodies on the earth, etc. What would be the effect on the seasons if the progress in its orbit were to cease for a time — for a continuance; all this would suggest a multitude of questions.
Such lessons as these, a teacher ought to be able to give, as they not only interest and exercise their minds, but are highly useful to them.
But in order that children may get an accurate knowledge of geography, it must not only be taught as a formal lesson, but as occasion may call it forth in the reading lessons. For instance, the inhabitants of America or Asia are mentioned — that will lead the teacher to ask, what country do you inhabit? Some will answer, Europe: yes; but what part of it ? England, an island in the west. But what part of England ? The south. Yes: but merely saying the south of England does not point out with sufficient accuracy where you live. Oh ! in Hampshire. Well, but the English counties are subdivided (what is meant by subdivided ? division of a division) into parishes ; what parish are you in ? and in this way working them down to the very spot.
Again, in their reading perhaps something occurs about France and Spain. The teacher: How are the two countries situated with respect to each other ? in what part of Europe ?- separated by what chain of mountains ? Are the Pyrenees the highest mountains in Europe ? What is their height compared with the highest mountains in England ? Between what two seas do they run, and in what direction? How do you get out of the Atlantic into the Mediterranean? Passing through the Straits of Gibraltar, what country is on your right hand ? what on your left ? Do you pass Cadiz before you get at the strait or after ? Then give them some account of the rock. Supposing a ship was sailing from Gibraltar to Constantinople, through what remarkable straits would it pass? What country is on the east and what on the west of the Dardanelles ? On what sea is Constantinople ? — built by whom? Are all the states of Europe Christian ?-any other exception besides Turkey? What do we get from Smyrna, Constantinople, etc. ? and show how the commerce of the world is facilitated by the Mediterranean running between the Continents of Europe and Africa, and up to Asia.
Or if anything about St. Petersburgh or Stockholm occurs, make them point out the course of a ship from London to either of these places what it would be likely to take out and bring back ? By whom was St. Petersburgh founded ? How long since Peter the Great lived? What is the ancient capital of Russia ?—then to tell them about Moscow being burnt in 1812-to point out the course of the Volga, Vistula, the Don, and into what seas they empty themselves. How is Europe separated from Asia ? observe the course of the rivers in the north of Asia. and their emptying themselves into the North Sea, consequently the mouths of them frozen up during great part of the year.
The following may be taken as an example of questioning the children when teaching a lesson such as that on America (Book of Lessons, No. 3).
America, or the New World, is separated into two subdivisions by the gulph of Mexico and the Carribbean Sea. Soon after it was discovered, this vast continent was seized upon by several of the nations of Europe, and each nation appears to have obtained that portion of it which was most adapted to its previous habits. The United States, the greater part of which was peopled by English settlers, while they possess the finest inland communication in the