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This book was written at the suggestion of the Educational Association of South Dakota. The Association was one of the first in the country to recognize the need of religious motive and ethical instruction in our public schools. In December, 1905 (at Brookings), the Educational Association, through its Committee on Resolutions, passed the following vote:
“Whereas a sound morality is the very foundation of a truly progressive society and of a healthy public opinion, we recommend that systematic ethical instruction be a part of the course of study in our public schools. We believe that this instruction should be entirely divorced from partisan or sectarian bias and founded on the broad basis of Christian ethics."
A Committee of fifteen members was appointed to prepare a course of study to guide teachers in giving systematic ethical instruction. This Committee made investigations of similar work in other states, but found nothing adequate to its needs. It therefore compiled a short outline of ethical instruction for the public schools of South Dakota. Since that time it has been felt that a fuller textbook is essential. Even those teachers who have easy access to libraries find that it requires time, energy, and skill to discover the best ethical material on a special topic, for a special age, and a special experience, hidden as such material is in the alluring and baffling books of a library. A library is a gold-mine of ethical wisdom, but the gold is often