« PreviousContinue »
authorized the "book agent” to sign for him; was such adoption legal?
A. “No act authorized to be done by the district board shall be valid unless voted at a meeting of the board." The book agent probably knew better, and should be reported to the publishers; but why will school officers not read and follow the law, rather than book agents?
Q. Can the board admit foreign pupils, and charge a fee, when the district has taken no action ?
A. The board has no such power. A special meeting can confer authority, if it is thought desirable.
Q. The district having made but a meagre provision for school, cannot the the board, in their discretion, make it better?
A. If the district does not, by the third Monday in November, make provision for as much as five months' school, then it becomes the duty of the board to do it, under section 437. But if the district makes such provision, the board has no power to go beyond it, and continue the school longer.
AID TO FREE HIGH SCHOOLS.
Q. Are all the expenditures for high schools to be reported in the financial statement?
A. Only those for "instruction," or, in other words, only the moneys paid to teachers for giving instruction. This is not only the legal limitation, but the only fair and reasonable one. If the incidental expenses of the schools were of uniform character, or in about equal proportion to expense for instruction, reporting them would make no practical difference; but one school may have already supplied itself with apparatus, library, etc., while another has done very little, but would be quite willing to expend for such purposes in the expectation of having a portion of the expense refunded.
THE COMPULSORY LAW.
Q. Are any lists of children to be made under section 2 of the compulsory law, where public schools are not in operation; can they be made at any other times than those named in the law, and when does liability under the law commence ?
A. The law does not take cognizance of the past-of any negli. gence that may have existed prior to September 1, 1879; there is therefore no reason for making any lists of children where public schools are not in operation. The requirement is that lists be made in February and September, but this does not preclude the commencement or completion of lists at other times, as circumstances may require. As to liability, it is not necessarily to be assumed that parents who have been negligent in the past will continue to be as much so, under the stimulus of the new law, or that children who may attend no school during the first portion of the school year, will continue to be absent the whole year. It is reasonable to allow the whole year in which to comply with the requirement of at least twelve weeks' schooling for all children between seven and fifteen years of age. It follows that there will be no call to enforce the law until one year, or at least the greater part of one year, has passed away.
Q. Is liability under the law avoided if a parent or guardian sends a child to a private school taught in German or some other foreign language?
A. The public schools are to be taught in the English language, and it may be considered desirable that all children should be principally educated in and through this language, as the prevailing language of the country; but we have a large population who speak other languages, especially German; German born parents may very naturally wish to have their children read and speak German as well as English, and if they see fit to have them receive their elementary education through the German, it cannot be said that they are incurring any liability under the law. The most despotic government in Europe does not attempt to compel education through one language only, where several languages are spoken.
Give undivided attention to the class, and insist on its undivided attention. Do not allow any interruption. Do not leave a pupil reciting and go off to another part of the room to attend to some other pupil. Your business is the class.
ENERGY will do everything that can be done in the world; and no talents, no circumstances, no opportunities, will make a two-legged animal a man without it. — Goethe.
MEN of great and stirring powers, who are destined to mold the age in which they are born, must first mold themselves upon it. Coleridge.
MESSRS. WHITFORD AND PRADT: I noticed in the July number of your paper, an article entitled, “Education as a Science.” However, after carefully reading it, I failed to discover its use to us as a class of teachers. It explained the science of education very well perhaps, but what we want is something more than theory or science. Something tangible and real. Not such as the phantom pleasure, that ever recedes as we pursue, but something that is going to help us in the every day business of the school room. When scholars are noisy and troublesome, and everything seems to aggravate, we had rather have some good, sound advice as to ways and means, than all the fine theories about education in Christendom.
A great deal of the advice that is given is tno vague to be of much profit to many. It tells us what to do but not how to do it. You may as well put a book. keeper in charge of a threshing machine and tell him to run it, as to tell a young, inxperienced teacher, “ You should so teach as to strengthen the mem. ory,” or “The object of education is to sharpen the perceptive faculties." We may know these primary facts, and still not understand how to obtain the best results in that direction. We had, I think, rather be instructed in regard to the best methods of teaching reading, writing, grammar, or primary arithmetic, or even the primer.
And, for the benefit of my fellow workers, I would humbly submit my method of teaching primary arithmetic. The first thing is writing numbers. This is done by requiring them first to write from 1 to 10 on the blackboard, always taking care to induce strife between the scholars by comparing their work when finished, both as to correctness and neatness. This helps them to do better in the future. The next lessoo, or more properly it is a part of the first, is to re. quire them to write from 1 to 15 or 20, according to the aptness they have shown in the first lesson, on slates. This is to be brought for your inspection at the first rest afternoon. Continue this from day to day till they can read and write from 1 to 100, always taking care to insist on neatness. Now you are ready for addi. tion. However, of this part we will talk in the future. And meanwhile let us hear from some one more able to treat of this subject than I am. Cambria.
R. A. GREEN. [We agree with the foregoing correspondent, that methods in teaching are of great practical importance; but so are the principles underlying methods. There are many practical hints in the selections from Dr. Bain's book — "Edu. cation as a Science" to which she refers, of great importance, ignorance or dirregard of which may greatly hinder or mar the teacher's work. It is necessary to know how to do things in the school-room; it is also necessary to know why, when, and how far they are to be done. A teacher who has an excellent method in teaching grammar or arithmetic may greatly injure a child by pushing him forward in it when too young, and too fast. Considered in this way, the book referred to is a practical book, though not a book of methods.- Eds.)
3- Vol. IX.- No. 10
The following communication may not only be of interest but of service to some of our readers in the northwest part of the state:
NORTHFIELD, MINN., September 13, 1879. DEAR JOURNAL - Carleton College, in this city, opened on Wednesday of this week under the most favorable auspices. It is now thirteen years of age, and its financial condition is cheering, though its funds are not yet sufficient to warrant the board of trustees to do all that they feel ought to be done to increase its efficiency and enable it fully to meet the wants, in every respect, of our rapidly growing state. Still, the friends of the college are greatly encouraged. One hundred and fifty students were enrolled this week, the largest number ever before enrolled at the opening of the year. Rev. Geo. Huntington, brother of the well known writer, Emily Huntington Miller, and for some years past the pastor of the Congi egational church at Oak Park, Illinois, takes the chair of Logic and Rhetoric, and is to be instructor in elocution. Thos. B. Smith, of the Sheffield Scientific School, becomes instructor in chemistry, geology and mineralogy. Mrs. Mary R. Wilcox, formerly teacher in the St. Paul high school and also in the normal school at Mankato, becomes teacher in the English department. Miss Aona Lincoln, late Matron in Hallowell Classical Institute in Maine, enters on the duties of Matron of Ladies's Hall. These additions to the faculty, together with the former members, give Carleton College an able and scholarly corps of instructors, and one that may command the confidence of the community
A chronometer and a chronograph have been added to the excellent apparatus of the observatory. The chemical laboratory has been doubled in capacity and is now in good working order.
A very valuable collection of standard and miscellaneous books, worth $2,500, has been donated to the college library by a man whose name we are not per. mitted to make public. Thus it will appear that Carleton College is girding up its loins for renewed effort, and there is a bright prospect for the coming year, and the hope and belief is that those prayers are to be answered by which her existence has been consecrated. Carleton College had its origin in that missionary spirit that desired that our population in its rapid westward march might not outrun the influence of christian education, and all the friends of the college are making an earnest endeavor that she may not fail in her high mis. sion. Truly yours,
B. M. REYNOLDS.
What is the origin of the apostropbe, in the possessive care ?— A SUBSCRIBER.
ANSWER. — In the Anglo-Saxon, the genitive or possessive ends in es. The English form of the case is merely an abreviation, somewhat as e'en is an abreviation of even.
The word “creek” is generally pronounced "crik,” i. e., giving the same sound as in “been.” Is this correct? If so, on what authority ? - 0: E. L.
ANSWER. — There is no authority, that we know of. It is a mere provincialism.
THE BOARD OF NORMAL REGENTS passed a resolution, at a special session last month, requesting the Regents of the State University to establish a department of pedagogics in that institution. They appointed a committee to confer with the University Regents, if this proposition is favorably entertained by them, and to arrange a course of instruction which shall enable the graduates of the Normal Schools to pursue advanced studies in the University, and to investigate more fully the principles and methods of education. It is very desirable that this arrangement should be made. It would form another link by which our leading institution of learning is united with the Normal Schools and the High Schools of the State. It would supply the training now greatly needed in fitting teachers for the latter schools. A large percentage of the graduates of the Uni. versity now engage in teaching for a brief time or as a life work; and they realize the advantages which such a course of instruction would supply. ACcording to the statutes of the State, the diploma of a university graduate, after he has taught successfully sixteen months in our public schools, becomes a teacher's life certificate; and for him to use this privilege, he should be thor. oughly acquainted with the fundamental problems and rules of his profession. By establishing this department, the University will, also, place itself in the line of progress which similar institutions are now following in this country.
ON THE WHOLE the attendance on the institutes now in progress, has been larger than usual. In a few counties there has been a slight falling off in this respect, but in most a decided gain. The county superintendents, as a rule, have exerted themselves faithfully to induce their teachers to be present the full time at their institutes. Teachers have felt a growing desire to secure all the instruction imparted this year in the institute course. On their part, as well as on the part of the county superintendents, there has been an in. creased demand for the two weeks' institute. One four weeks and thirty-three two weeks' institutes were appointed.
THE PRESENT SERIES OF INSTITUTES will close by the 17th of this month. Arrangements were made to hold fifty-two of them during the three months beginning with August. The one in Barron county has been suspended. An institute at Stoughton, Dane county, was added to the list last month. Fortysix conductors, four regular and forty-two assistant, have been employed. This large number is owing to two facts, — more institutes demanded than usual, and thirty-one of them required to be held the last two weeks in August and the first week in September. Little conception can be formed by those not acquainted with the work, how much attention is needed to arrange all the details for such a series of institutes. We are happy to learn that the instruction of the conduc. tors has been very satisfactory to the county superintendents and teachers.