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ate application; and there are few manuals better adapted than this, to aid young teachers, in particular; since it furnishes not only proper subjects for useful instruction, but the best possible form into which a lesson may be thrown, in order to render it interesting and successful, or to give it a definite form without entailing the disadvantages of mechanical routine.

We would earnestly recommend this work, then, to mothers and to all teachers of infancy, but chiefly as suggesting similar methods to what it exemplifies,-not as furnishing a manual for set lessons. Instructers, like all other human beings, are inclined to resort to easy and expeditious methods of despatching their business. As far as this economy of time takes effect without causing a hurried and superficial advancement of the pupil, it is well. But teachers do not perhaps discriminate with sufficient exactness, in all cases, between the saving of time in the saying of a lesson, and the saving of time in the learning of it. The former is very well, if it proceed from skill in the teacher and fluency in the scholar, (on whatever method, old or new, common or peculiar,) but the latter is a very difficult and a very delicate thing. It implies, in the first place, not only high talent in the instructer, but absolutely genius,— creative and inventive power,—and after all may be a disadvantage, by the very despatch which it secures; since by carrying the mind with a greater velocity over the same surface, it renders the attention less steadfast, and the memory less retentive.

From this source many evils arise in education. The teacher not unfrequently adopts the most improved book, as a mechanical facility for despatch, and adheres to the very letter of its prescription, as the greater security for his object, Apparent improvement is thus easily created; but unfortunately it is at the expense of individual mind and character in the pupil, as it excludes effectually the possibility of personal thought and investigation. We have for this reason been the more anxious to see the valuable work of which we have been speaking used in the true spirit of instruction, as a means of creating and cherishing thought, and inspiring the mind with that saluary strength which results from the consciousness of free and spontaneous effort.

As it is not improbable that some of our readers have not yet had opportunity of perusing this work, it may not be unimportant to mention that it consists wholly of courses of useful questions on various subjects of elementary knowledge. The fifth section we have selected as a specimen, and, and on the

whole, a favourable one, of the character and design of the book.


Questioner. Are you an animal; that is to say, a living creature? Q. Are birds and fishes, and cats and dogs, also living creatures? Q. Birds can fly in the air, and fish swim in the sea, but dogs and cats live on the earth as you do: in what then do you differ from a cat or dog?

Q. But in what respect, besides shape, do you differ from them? Do they not eat, and drink, and sleep, as well as you do?

Q. Do dogs and cats like to be kindly treated, and love those who treat them kindly?

Q. Do you not likewise like to be kindly treated, and love those who are good to you?

Q. So far then, it seems, there is no difference between you and them. But can dogs and cats speak? Have they the use of language?

Q. Though they cannot speak as we do, they can make sounds to be understood by one another; and can plainly signify when they are angry or pleased. What can you do more?

Q. Do the grown up people who are now your teachers know more than you do? Are they wiser than you are at present?

Q. Were they not once little children like you?

Q. When they were children, did they know as much as they know now; or were they then like you, ignorant of almost every thing?

Q. Was it merely by growing big that they became wise? or was it by attending to instruction?

Q. Though only a little child, you can understand what I say to you: do you think a kitten could thus understand me?

Q. Besides the gift of speech, you have then another gift bestowed on you above what is enjoyed by other sorts of animals; for have you not the gift of understanding?

Q. That you may perceive this point distinctly, tell me, if you were very cold and saw the fire likely to go out, and that pieces of coal, or turf, or of wood fit for burning, were within reach, could you not contrive to keep up the fire?

Q. How would you effect your purpose?

Q. Do not dogs seem in cold weather to like the warmth of a good fire?

Q. Large dogs can carry very heavy things in their mouths; but could the wisest of dogs contrive to mend the fire by adding fuel to it? Q. To contrive requires thought. You then have a degree of thought which the wisest of dogs have not; but if you were left by a friend in a strange place, when you lost sight of that friend could you trace him out by smelling his footsteps, following his course, and turning where he had turned, until you discovered where he was?

Q. When a dog loses his master he can do all this; and though he were to be blindfolded and led to a great distance, could return on his own steps, though he never saw the road; in this a dog can do more than any of us can do. Did he learn to do this (as we learn to do things) by attending to instruction; or did he do it from nature?

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Did you ever see a bird's nest?

Would it not be a long time before you could learn to form such a nest; even though all the materials were placed within your reach?

Q. Who taught the little bird to make its nest so neatly? Did it learn at a school?

Q. Every kind of bird builds its nest in the way that is common to its kind. A sparrow does not make its nest like the nest of a swallow, nor does the swallow build hers in the manner of the sparrow. Do you think that either of them could learn to imitate what is done by the other?

Q. But though you perhaps might never be able to build a nest so neatly as a little bird, are you not in many instances able to do what you see done by others?

Q. Do you wish and expect to be able in a little time to do more than you yet can do?

Q. Do you think that any bird or beast has the wish or expectation to be able to do more than it can do at present?


Does not this show that your nature is superior to theirs?

Q. If you had no wish or desire to learn more than you have yet learned, do you think that by such indifference you would give proof of the superiority of your nature?

Q. It is the nature of cats to catch mice. When you see a little kitten at play, 'and observe how quickly it springs on whatever it can lay hold of, and toss it in its paws, do you think it is acting contrary to nature?

Q. If you, who are by nature capable of improvement, do not wish and endeavour to improve; will the kitten or you be acting most agreeably to your respective natures?

Q. You think that you have more understanding than a kitten?
Q. How do you show or prove that you have more understanding?
Q. Can you learn much in a single day?

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Q. Monday and Tuesday make two days:-If you learn, then, something on Monday, and as much on Tuesday, how much wiser will you be on Tuesday night than you were on Monday morning?

Q. Go on to learn as much more on Wednesday, which will make three days; how much wiser will you then be?

Q. Add a fourth day, Thursday, and will you not then be four times as wise as you were on Monday morning?

Q. Friday will make a fifth, Saturday a sixth day; so that by Saturday you will have advanced six degrees in learning. But will you not still have much to learn?

Q. If you spend one whole day without learning any thing, will you then, on Saturday night, know six times more than you did on Monday morning?

Q. See then the value of a single day.

You have told me that human beings are distinguished from brutes, by having minds capable of improvement: will any who desire to improve, be happy at the end of a week to think that they have lost a day?

* In what follows, the pupils are supposed to have obtained some knowledge of numbers.

ART. VII.- An Address delivered before a Meeting, assembled in

Baltimore, April 16, 1829, for learning the objects, and aiding the cause of Infant Schools. By Charles Dexter Cleveland.

[Our readers will, we doubt not, peruse with much satisfaction the following evidence of the increasing interest taken in infant schools. The author of this address speaks on the subject with the eloquence of enlightened zeal. We are happy to transfer to our pages such expressions of what has now become general sentiment on the importance of commencing education in infancy, and of admitting all classes of society to its benefits. There is an additional value in discourses such as the following, and one of no ordinary kind, in the assistance which they contribute towards the advancement of public opinion on methods of instruction. The infant school system introduces principles and modes of education previously but little used, and which seem calculated to effect a happy change in all the means employed for developing the mental and corporeal faculties.

If the methods adopted in infant schools are true to the human mind, and favourable to its expansion, its vigour, its activity, and its happiness, then the whole plan of elementary instruction as commonly pursued, needs revision and amendment. This reformation, we are happy to observe, is begun ; and in very many of the primary schools in villages and country districts, as well as in cities, teachers are borrowing useful hints for improvement from the methods employed in the infant schools.

As a subject of contemplation to philanthropic minds, these useful institutions are deeply interesting they are fraught with auspicious prospects for humanity, in the facilities they afford for the general diffusion of intelligence and virtuous principle. It is in this light, too, that they offer the largest promise of intellectual progress, by producing a universal elevation of the mental habits of society.]


It is now but little more than three months since a meeting was first held in this city, for the purpose of taking into consideration the establishment of Infant Schools. At that time the persons, who actively engaged in this benevolent work



had some opposition to encounter, and many obstacles to surmount. There were doubts to remove, fears to quiet, ignorance to enlighten, prejudices to overcome. But they went forward steadily and firmly to the object they had in view. They were cheered by the approving voice within; a voice far more animating and sustaining than all the vain plaudits which could meet the ear from without and I cannot but feel grateful to them, for their benevolent plans, and their corresponding and well directed energies; and congratulate them on the high success which has crowned their exertions.

Yes, sir, I do not hesitate to say that in this thinking, benevolent, soul stirring age, there is no cause purer in its nature, or loftier in its objects than that of infant schools.

The primary and leading object of infant schools, is the moral education of the children of the poorer classes in the community. I say moral education, apart from intellectual and physical, for although these are ultimately fully attended to, yet they are made entirely secondary and subservient to the other. This is as it should be, both from the high destiny of our moral being, and the more immediate wants of the children, who are the objects of the institution's benevolent care. They are mostly taken from that class of society, who have neither the means, the inclination, nor the moral and intellectual qualities to educate their offspring. They are collected from the lanes and alleys of the city, where they are continually subject to hear, and perhaps often use, the most profane and vulgar language; and brought together to be instructed in the simplest precepts of virtue and religion,-precepts made perfectly intelligible to their infant minds, and which are received with seriousness and pleasure, from the happy manner in which they are communicated. The children are such, as, without the exertions of the benevolent, would grow up in idleness, ignorance, and vice. The mother, to whom the care of the infant person, and the cultivation of the infant mind belong, is obliged to be incessantly employed in earning the means of subsistence for her family, and is, probably, the greater part of the time, from home herself; and even were this not the case, a very unsuitable person for the proper guidance of her infant family. Such then is the class which infant schools are de

signed to benefit.

But it may be asked, how can instruction be imparted to children of so early an age? How is it possible that a mass of children assembled from such families, that such a 'moral

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