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Geography, from three to five times a week.
Spelling, in 1st grade, two or three times a week; 2d and 3d grades, three or four times; 4th grade, four or five times; all grades below the 4th, eight to ten times.
Writing, in the Grammar divisions, two or three times a week; in the 5th and 6th grades, four or five times. See 14.
§ 14. Division of Time and Labor.—In deciding what proportion of time should be given to spelling by letters, what to spelling by sounds, to reading, to numbers, to geography, etc., the rule should be this: whenever a class is less advanced in one branch assigned to the division than in other branches, let that particular branch receive special attention till it is as familiar as the others. It is very common to find a class more advanced in reading than in numbers, and still devoting less attention to arithmetic than to reading; the observance of this rule will correct all such errors.
$ 15. Rhetorical Excercises. The first five grades should devote about one hour every Friday afternoon, to exercises in composition, declamation and recitation, and reading select pieces. The same course may be adopted in the other divisions, when the convenience of rooms and other circumstances permit.
In the 1st and 2d grades, every pupil should be required to take a part in both the elocutionary and
the composition exercises, as often as once a month. When pupils have important written abstracts or other similar exercises to
may tain cases be accepted as equivalents for the regular compositions. There may also be instances in which it will be best to accept the reading of a piece of poetry or other selection, as an equivalent for a declamation or recitation; but in all ordinary cases it is better even for the girls to commit to memory the pieces which they recite.*
*“ The Recital.—Akin to the debate, we have introduced another exercise which, for want of a better name, is termed the Recital. The primary object is to cultivate the power of clothing thought in appropriate language, and of presenting it in an easy, colloquial style, to a company of listeners. The pupil may select for a topic any thing that will require a description. It may be an event in history, a brief biographical sketch, the relation of current events, or a good story. The subject-matter for a Recital may be obtained, after reading a book, by forming a synoptical outline of the same, detailing the more interesting portions with a proper degree of minuteness. Among the topics which have been thus presented, are the following: 'Sir John FRANKLIN,' in which was given a brief sketch of his life, explorations, loss, expeditions sent in search of him, and the discovery of his remains ; ' Account of Lady Esther Stanhope,' Grace Darling,' The Sack of Rome,' • Aaron Burr,' etc.
“ The exercise is equally adapted to both sexes. While it furnishes many of the advantages of the debate, it affords others of equal value. It accustoms the pupil to comprehend, with promptness and ease, the substance of a voluine or subject ; induces concentration of thought; cultivates memory ; encourages the habit of investigation; affords practice in the use of language; stores the “mind with useful information ; forms the habit of noticing important facts and events, and imparts the power of presenting information to others with facility and in an agreeable manner. “The exercise greatly increases the interest of our 'general ex.
$ 16. Mental Discipline.—The highest ultimate object of intellectual education, is mental discipline, and this discipline can only be acquired by mental labor. Cases are constantly occurring in which pupils require explanation and assistance, and unless they receive this aid they will be greatly retarded in their progress. But examples are also frequently arising in which teachers give assistance that is not required, and thus rob the pupils of the discipline which they would gain by overcoming the difficulties themselves. Teachers should study carefully the capabilities of their pupils, and never do for them what they are able to do without assistance. Pupils should also be guarded against the dangerous habit of assisting one another, without the knowledge and approval of the teacher.
It is one of the most important duties of the teacher, to exercise a watchful care over the pupils' hours and habits of study. Some pupils never learn to study a lesson abstractedly and with the whole mind; and some teachers have heretofore been so unfortunate as not to know that they have any special responsibility in this matter.
The power of attention is essential to the successful prosecution of study at every stage of prog
Reference.—$ 16. Watts on the Mind.
ercises,' stimulates the minds of the school to more elevated modes of thought and conversation, and induces a higher and more profitable course of reading."--A. Parish, Principal of High School, Springfield, „Vass.
ress, and the best efforts of teachers should be directed to the cultivation of this great educational power.*
REGULAR COURSE. Oral instruction, embracing lessons on common things; on form, color, flowers, animals, morals and manners. Two or more lessons a day, each from five to eight minutes long.
Repeating verses and maxims, singly and in concert.
Reading from blackboard and from charts, with exercises in spelling, both by letters and by sounds. Two or more lessons a day.
Counting, from one to sixty. Simple exercises in adding, with use of numeral frame, pebbles, beans, etc.
Drawing on the slate, imitating letters, figures, and other objects from blackboard sketches by the teacher, tablets, cards, and other copies. Printing the reading and spelling lessons, and the numerals as far as learned. Two or more exercises a day. [All the pupils should be provided with slates and pencils.]
Physical exercises as often as once every half hour; each exercise from three to five minutes. See § 105.
The recitations in this grade should never exceed twenty minutes in length. In ordinary lessons, fiftecn minutes will be time enough, and in some lessons ten minutes.
* “The surest way to succeed in cultivating and improving the other intellectual powers, is to acquire a command over attention, and to give it a useful direction."— Marcel.
“I was told by the Queen's Inspector of the Schools in Scotland, tbat the first test of a teacher's qualification is, his power to excite and to sustain the attention of his class. If a teacher can not do this, he is pronounced, without further inquiry, incompetent to teach." -Mann.
$ 17. Oral Instruction. The period embraced in the tenth grade should be regarded as a bridge from the freedom of home-life to the more regular discipline of the school-room.* The first lessons should
, be simple conversational exercises upon home objects, with which the children are already familiar, and in which they feel the greatest interest,—their toys, their plays, their friends, etc.
In all the object lessons given in the 9th and 10th grades, the teacher should bear in mind that the prominent objects to be accomplished are, to cultivate habits of observation, improve the perceptive faculties, and secure habits of accuracy in the use of language. See $ 8.
$ 18. In conducting conversational exercises in all the grades, teachers should be careful not to aid the pupils so much as to check their curiosity and deprive them of the opportunity to discover and investigate the properties of objects for themselves.t
References.—$ 17. Calkins's Object Lessons, pp. 11-40; Welch's Object Lessons, first 90 pages.
* “ As in the transplanting of the tree from the nursery to the orchard, its continued life and unchecked growth demand that there should be as little change of circumstances, as to climate, soil, and position, as possible, so in the transfer of the child from the nursery to the school-room, he should be led to feel the change as little as possible.” — Report of Board of Education, Oswego, N. Y.
+ “The process of self-development should be encouraged to the fullest extent. Children should be led to make their own investi.