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An Occasional Method.
This may be made a useful exercise in composition, as well as in geography,
Much interest may be excited in a class by the following plan, which I have often seen adopted with pleasing results. Let the first in order name some city, state, country, mountain, river, etc. ; let the next in order tell where it is, and give all the information he can concerning it; and then give to the next some place commencing with the last letter of his own topic, and so on. Sometimes it will be well to limit the names or topics to cities, sometimes to countries or rivers, etc. An exercise of this kind, once or twice weekly, will excite much interest in a class, and lead to investigation.
If one is unable to give any information, or gives it incorrectly, let him pass to his seat, and the next in order make the trial. To illustrate this let us suppose a class of six members, whom we will designate by the figures 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6.
2. London, the most important and largest city in the world, is situated on the river Thames, in England, and is the capital of the British empire. It contains a population of nearly 3,000,000, and is in all respects a city of immense influence. (To the next.) New York ?
3. New York is the name of one of the United States, and also of the largest city in the Union. The city of New York is situated on Manhattan Island, and it is the most important and influential city of the New World. The island, on which it is
A Specimen Exercise.
situated, is thirteen and a half miles long, and about two miles wide in its widest part. The population is about 650,000. It was first settled by the Dutch, in 1612. (To the next.)
(To the next.) Knoxville ? 4. Knoxville is a flourishing city in Tennessee. It is on the Holston River, and was formerly the capital of the State. It has a university and an asylum for the deaf and dumb. (To the next.) Edinburgh?
5. Edinburgh is the capital and metropolis of Scotland. As the centre of learning, it is the most distinguished town in the British empire. It is in many respects an important city. It is particularly noted for its excellent and elegant buildings. The name Edinburgh (Edwin's castle or fort”) is supposed to be derived from Edwin a Saxon prince. It was anciently written Edwinsburgh, etc. (To the next.) Hartford ?
6. Hartford is one of the capitals of Connecticut. It is on the west bank of the Connecticut River, and is a city of much enterprise. Trinity College is located at Hartford. The American Asylum for the Deaf and Dumb is in this city. There is also an asylum for the insane, which is one of the most noted and best conducted in the United States, etc.
These are merely given as examples. You will readily see to what extent an exercise of this kind may be carried, -- and especially if the class is large. It will be well, after a few trials, to require all the prominent particulars in relation to each topic or place to be given; but at first, if a few are cor
rectly given, it may answer. After one has stated what he may have to say, an opportunity may be given for others to add any particulars not already given. An additional interest and advantage may be secured by making the spelling of the names given a part of the exercise.
Another interesting, useful, and practical lesson may be obtained from the items in a common rine Journal." Let us take, for illustration, the following, which I find in a New York newspaper.
PORT OF NEW YORK, AUGUST 5.
Steamships - Roanoke, Skinner, Norfolk, Ludlam & Pleasants; Kangaroo, Jeffrey, Liverpool, J. G. Dale; Illinois, Boggs, Aspinwall, M. O. Roberts.
Ships — Ocean Pearl, Chandler, New Orleans, N. H. Brigham; Matoro, Dillingham, Valparaiso, A. Ladd; H. Von Gagen, Reimer, Hamburg, W. F. Schmidt; Horatio, Hathaway, Cowes and a market, Jas. E. Ward & Co.
Barks - William, Heath, Gibara, C. & E. J. Peters; Cavallo, Washington, Lavacca, J. H. Brower & Co.; Nazarine, Smith, Benaventura, M. M. Bachey.
Brigs - Lydia Francis, Hall, Philadelphia, Yates & Porterfield; Crimea, Hickborn, Philadelphia, Walsh, Carver, & Chase; Wilhelmina (Brem.), Howyer, Laguayra, Burchard & Burk; Edinburgh, Bartlett, Philadelphia, T. H. Sandford ; Flying Eagle, Conant, Alicante, R. P. Buck & Co.; Vulcan (Br.), Card, Windsor, D. R. De Wolff; A. B. Cook, Leighton, Philadelphia, G. W. Simpson.
R. M. steamship Persia (Br.), Judkins, Liverpool, July 25, mdse. and pass. to E. Cunard. July 25, passed ship Countess (of England), bound in; Aug. 1, lat. 47 20, lon. 50 16, passed a cutter steering W., showing Spanish colors; 2d, lat. 44 40, lon. 57 32, exchanged sigsuch as you
nals with Br. ship Onward, bound E.; 3d, at 8 a. m., lat. 42 26, lon. 62 56, passed steamship Vanderbilt, hence for Southampton ; same day, at 91 a. m., lat. 42 18, lon. 61 21, passed steamship Atlantic, hence for Liverpool; the Persia arr. off Sandy Hook on the 4th, at 8 p. m.; Aug. 1, wind easterly, light breeze and cloudy, at 8 p. m., Cape Race Light abeam ; 4th, at 61 a. m., lat. 40 23, lon. 71 25, calm, with dense fog, took a pilot from the Edwin Forrest, No. 14.
Steamship New York (Br. screw), Craig, Glasgow, July 22, mdse. and pass. to J. McSymon. Has experienced strong westerly gales for the first 5 days; on the 25th, had a heavy gale from W. N. W.; 26th, signalled Brem. ship Janson, Smidt, bound W.; 29th, at 51 a. m., signalled steamship Arabia, for Liverpool ; 30th, at 9 p. m., a large steamer passed, bound W.; Aug. 4, at 11] a. m., signalled steamship Atlantic, hence; same day, saw a Brem. bark, showing private flag, blue swallow and white cross.
Ship Don Quixote (of Boston), Elwell, Foo-Chow-Foo April 23, teas to order. Sailed in company with Br. ship Glencoe, for London; left Angier May 21, in company with bark Reindeer, Townsend, from Singapore for New York; April 26, lat. 18, lon. 115, passed Br. ship Bio Bio, from Shanghae; May 21, 20 miles from Angier, signalled ship Mandarin ; 26th, exchanged signals with a ship supposed the Fearless ; 29th, spoke Fr. ship Thetis, from Pondicherry for Bourbon ; June 15, lat. 34 28, lon. 29, spoke ship Jennie W. Paine, from Batavia for London ; 18th, lat. 34, lon. 23, spoke bark Vernon, for Table Bay; 27, lat. 29, lon. 12, signalled Br. ship Anglo American; 28th, lat. 27, lon. 9, signalled Br. ship Alice Jane ; same day, signalled ship Fleetwood Dale, from Calcutta, 71 days out; 21st, lat. 35, lon. 13, spoke the C. W. Wappers, from Batavia, 72 days out; 22d, lat. 33 30, lon. 15, spoke brig Helena, for Hamburg ; July 24, lat. 13, lon. 50, spoke bark Emblem, from Rio for Philadelphia, 25 days out; passed St. Helena July 3.
You will readily see that you may make the above extracts from a 66 Marine Journal” may always find in newspapers printed at important seaports — the basis of several interesting lessons. These lessons, too, will have a practical bearing. Let us propose the following questions to your class:
What is meant by Marine Journal” ? of New York,” — where is it, and what can you say of it? What is meant by “ Cleared”? What is the name of the steamship first cleared ? her captain's name? whither bound ? by whom cleared ? Where is Norfolk ? Where is Liverpool ? How would you go from New York to Liverpool ? Where is Aspinwall? Is it an old or new town? To what does it owe its origin? Where is New Orleans, and what can you say of it? Where is Valparaiso ? Where is Hamburg ? (Let pupils go to the outline maps and point out these places, and designate the course of a vessel from Boston or New York, etc.) Where is Cowes ? What is meant by “ Cowes and a market" ?
You will at once perceive to what extent these questions may be proposed.
Under the head “ Arrived," the lessons may be still more interesting and varied. The places of meeting may be pointed out; the meaning of phrase “ showing Spanish colors.” This will open a new and instructive field. 6 Cape Race Light abeam,” what is meant ? what by “ took a pilot” ? etc.
But in your efforts to teach the geography of other and distant sections, do not overlook less remote sections. Occasionally take imaginary journeys with your pupils. Let us suppose you have a school in New York city. Say to your class, when sufficiently advanced : “To-morrow's lesson will be an imaginary journey to the city of Boston. There are three or four different routes. You may con