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sible amount of punishment, is an attainment of the highest order; and the teachers who possess this power should everywhere receive the highest honors of the profession and the most liberal rewards.
The main question at issue respecting corporal punishment, is not whether it can be entirely dispensed with, but how far can the necessity for resorting to it be reduced, without detriment to the order and discipline of schools.
In the efforts of the teacher to remove, as far as possible, the necessity for school punishments, he will have occasion to exercise all the judgment and skill he possesses, in employing other means to control the tendency of wayward pupils to irregularity and insubordination.* The first, and most impor . tant of these, must be found in the personal influence of the teacher himself. He must have the ability to inspire his pupils with a love of virtue and every adorning excellence, and his own life must be a model worthy of their imitation.
*“The following appear to be the principal means of which the educator can avail himself for maintaining an influence over his pupil :
1. The pupil's sense of duty.
Two kinds of Obedience.
No effort should be spared to lead the pupils to govern themselves.
This is a cardinal point in school discipline, and every thing short of this should be regarded as defective and unsatisfactory. Even arbitrary government by the teacher, when necessary, should tend to self-government on the part of the pupil, as an ultimate object.
There are two kinds of obedience, which are radically distinct from each other : obedience that is yielded in compliance with the dictates of reason and from a sense of duty; and obedience that is yielded to arbitrary authority, without any regard to reason and duty. The first requires no sacrifice of honor or self-respect on the part of the governed. It is simply recognizing the true and natural relation of the parent to his child, and of the teacher to his pupil. When the child's mind acts in accordance with reason, this obedience is yielded cheerfully and from choice. When the pupil will not acknowledge his duty to submit to the rightful authority of the teacher, when the will of the pupil gains control over his reason and judgment, then the teacher must take such measures as may be necessary to bring this wayward will to bow. The authority of the teacher in school must be complete and unquestioned.
But the teacher should never forget that love of freedom, love of independence, love of power, are all implanted in the natures of children for wise and important ends; and no unskillful teacher should be allowed to lay his hand ruthlessly upon
them. No degree of eminence is ever attained without them. No high order of effort is ever made without them. They are committed to the teacher to be controlled and regulated, not to be crushed out.
The habit of yielding to arbitrary power against reason, is the condition of a slave; and mere servilo obedience is degrading in its influence, destroys selfrespect, breaks down all laudable ambition, and paralyzes every noble and worthy effort.
Of all the special instrumentalities that have been devised to aid teachers in securing the discipline of their schools, the most important is the use of the School Register, in which a permanent record is made of the pupil's deportment from day to day, and a general average carried out at the end of every month, to be sent, when practicable, to the parent or guardian. See ante, p. 139.
The subject of School Discipline is exceedingly fruitful, and I can not here attempt to discuss it in all its bearings. After introducing two or three quotations, I will pass to the consider ation of a kindred topic.
“The value of any given result in school government depends very much upon the motives which produced it. We have seen pupils benumbed with fear and still as the grave, and heard their teacher—whose only rule was a reign of terror-lauded by the committee as a model disciplinarian. The stillest school is not always the most studious. Pupils may be controlled for a time by motives which will ultimately debase the character and enfeeble the will, or they may be stimulated to the highest effort by incentives which will be healthful and permanent in their influence upon the mind and heart."-B. G. Northrop.
“Another principle that is kept constantly in view in the government of the school, is to produce results by steadiness and perseverance, rather than by violent measures. Few students are found so obstinate or way ward as not to yield, eventually, even to a moderate pressure, steadily applied. This method of procedure is rendered the more easy and efficacious, by the consciousness of both the parties, that there is always in reserve ample power for more decisive measures, if they should become necessary. Students not previously accustomed to a mild method of discipline, sometimcs mistake it at first for want of firmness. But such mistakes are soon rectified. The whole machinery of the school, like an extended piece of net-work, is thrown over and around him, and made to bear upon him, not with any great amount of force at any one time or place, but with a restraining influence just sufficient, and always and everywhere present. Some of the most hopeless cases of idleness and insubordination that I have ever known, have been found to yield to this species of treatment.”— Report of John S. Hart, Principal of Philadelphia High School.
“Where all other means, both of prevention and of persuasion, reasoning and argument, have been faithfully and perseveringly tried, and have failed, -when the incorrigible offender is proof against all the gentler influences and agencies which the teacher has at his command, and continued forbearance involves a permanent injury, not only to the obstinate transgressor, but to his associates and companions, and to the welfare of the entire school,—the teacher should be clothed with the power of effectual chastisement. But this power should be exercised as sparingly as possible, and exercised, when it becomes inevitable, in such a manner as to produce the most salutary effect—without passion, without anger or undue severity, and never in the presence of the school or the class. Its infliction should, as far as possible, partake of the character of a judicial punishment, – resorted to with the utmost reluctance,-upon the fullest evidence of guilt, and of contumacy, and only as a last resort.” -S. S. Randall, Superintendent of Schools, New York.
Lessons of Obedience.
LESSONS OF OBEDIENCE.
SOCIETY is so constituted, that the influence of government must everywhere be felt. A cheerful and hearty submission to rightful authority, is perfectly consistent with the freest and fullest development of a manly, independent spirit. It is impossible for any nation to maintain an existence, if the people have not learned this first great lesson of life; least of all can a free republic like ours continue, if the people have learned to govern, but not to obey. It becomes, then, an important inquiry, when and where shall this lesson of obedience be acquired. If delayed to adult years, there is no reason to expect it will ever be learned. It must be in the period of childhood and youth, and it must be either in the family or in the school. But it is painfully manifest, that a large portion of the children of every community, never learn to yield to authority at home, unless it be against their wills. In the public schools, all must be brought to tha same standard. A spirit of implicit obedience must be secured, before any thing else can be attempted ; not stolid, unreasoning, servile obedience, which crushes all manliness and self-respect out of the soul, but that intelligent, kindly obedience, which recognizes the true relation between parent and