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proper details. This department seems to be very judiciously inanaged; and the dictionary with which it closes, is well adapted to produce a classical pronunciation, in conjunction with as much information as is commonly required by young readers of history.
The sketches of ancient history, are accurate and comprehensive ; and the volume on Greece and Rome, possesses uncommon merit. The volume devoted to the history of England, contains the excellent little work of Mrs. Trimmer.
To abridgements of history, drawn up in the common way, we have objections. History is a branch of education too important to be hurried through in a few small volumes. It should be studied at much greater length than has hitherto been common.
The little work before us adopts the plan of presenting history in the form of a chain of biographical narratives : it is, in fact, designed more for the study of biography and chronology than of formal history. In this way, the objection to which most abridgements are liable, is entirely avoided ; and the interesting aspect of private life and individual character, is given to the narratives of the historian.
Conversations on Common Things, or Guide to Knowledge : with Questions. For the use of Schools. By a Teacher, Boston, 1824. 18mo. pp.
263. The design of this little volume is excellent. The author endeavors to furnish the minds of children with useful miscellaneous information on many things which do not fall under any of the common divisions of education, but are of vast importance in common life.—The work is intended for the use of schools ; but we know of few publications which are better adapted for the purpose of family instruction, or for enlivening a winter evening's fireside.
The wars of the Jews, as related by Josephus, adapted to the capacities of Young Persons : illustrated by Engravings. Boston, ?826. 12mo. pp. 192.
This work is, as the title intimates, an abridgement of Josephus. The author's intention is, to supply children with a continuation of Jewish History, from the point at which it is left by the sacred narratives.
The object of this volume is certainly a laudable one, and it has been very successfully accomplished. The style is simple and familiar; and the horrors of the Jewish warfare are relieved occasionally by the adventures and amusements of the family circle in which the book is supposed to be read.
This work is one of a very useful class, which we are happy to observe becoming popular. Abridgements of standard works which are too large or too costly for juvenile readers, are of great value in the early formation of a taste for useful reading.
Elements of Geography, exhibited historically, from the creation to the End of the World: intended as a First Book in the study of Geography, for Children in schools and private families. By Jedidiah Morse, D. D. Sixth edition. New-Haven, 1825. 18mo. pp. 162.
This little volume is designed to connect the study of Geography with that of sacred history. It is interspersed with some of the sublimest and most beautiful passages of Scripture. It is intended to lead the minds of children to those contemplative views of the subject, which shall induce them to connect it with the origin of the world, and of the human race, with the most important and interesting events recorded in the history of mankind, and with the final destiny of this carth, the great theatre of their actions.
This work will, we think, be found very useful in its proper place. It seems peculiarly adapted for Sunday schools.
A New Universal Atlas of the World, on an improved plan; consisting of thirty Maps, carefully prepared from the latest authorities; with complete Alphabetical Indices. By Sidney E. Morse, A. M. New-Haven, 1825. 4to.
A work of this kind has long been wanted. There has been hitherto do intermediate atlas between the outlines used at school, and publications too expensive for general use.
The above atlas is on a plan somewhat original in its details, but extensively sanctioned in the rapid circulation of an atlas of the United States, on the same plan.-All names which could be conveniently inserted, observing the grand outline of the maps, are given in full, as in common maps ; but small towns, and places which it would be difficult to insert in full, are referred to by figures and Italic letters. So that this atlas actually furnishes as much matter as some, of which the cost is three times as high.
We take much pleasure in recommending this valuable work, as one which will be found happily adapted for the use of schools of the higher order, and of private families. The execution, we may add, is exceedingly neat and highly creditable to the publishers, (Messrs. N. & S. S. Jocelyn, of New-Haven.)
BOOKS FOR CHILDREN.
Hymns for Children, selected and altered, with appropriate texts of Scripture. By the author of Conversations on Common Things.' Boston, 1825.
18mo. pp. 143. This valuable little work will furnish pleasing employment for Sunday. The selection manifests both judgement and taste. It does not contain, bowever, a great number of hymns adapted to very young children. The author complains of the difficulty of finding pieces well adapted to such a class of readers, and alludes to the acknowledged defects of most attempts of this kind. But we cannot agree with the author id what she seems to advance, that, in such circumstances, children should be permitted to commit to memory what they do not understand. It would perhaps be better to say at once, that this selection is not intended for infant minds.
Books such as this, ought, we think, to mention the age of the children for whose use they are designed. Parents would then have a satisfactory guide by which to make a proper selection for the various members of their families.
The Robins, or Fabulous Histories, designed for the instruction of Children, respecting their Treatment of Animals. By Mrs. Trimmer. Boston, 1822. 18mo. pp. 234.
The spirit and design of this little work are excellent. The author's endeavor is to cultivate in children humanity to the inferior animals, and to open the young heart to benign feelings towards every thing that lives.
The history of the Robins is mixed up with that of the family in whose garden they have taken up their abode. Many agreeable and patural incidents are introduced, in a way which cannot fail to interest and please children, and at the same time inculcate a useful lesson.
Tales of the Pemberton Family : for the use of Children. By Amelia Opie. Boston, 1825. 180o. pp. 107.
Mrs. Opie bas been eminently successful in the department of writing to which this little book belongs; and the Tales of the Pemberton Family are among ber happiest efforts. The impressions left on the mind of the young reader of these tales, will be decidedly conducive to virtue and piety.
Little Flora. By Elizabeth Somerville, autbor of many approved works for children. Boston, 1825. 18mo. pp. 105.
Little Flora, the author tells us, is designed to recommend gratitude, humanity, and universal good will: to discourage pride, cruelty, and gluttony."
An interesting story is made the vehicle of moral lessons of the kind mentioned. The heroine, however, seems so uniformly and perfectly good, that her young admirers can have but few hopes of resembling her, Children need to be shown, now and then, bow they may break off from foibles which they have indulged, or recover themselves from faults into which they have fallen. In other respects, • Little Flora' is a delightful and instructive tale, which cannot fail to cherish the better feelings of the young heart.
This author and those of the two preceding works, are pleasing instances of the happy adaptation of the female mind to the business of superintending the early cultivation of the disposition of children. The opening heart of infancy is a thing too delicate for the hand of man ; none buta female can touch it successfully; and it is one of the most promising features of our times, that female talent is asserting its right, and taking charge of this interesting department of education.
TO CORRESPONDENTS. We have been favored with some valuable suggestions by S. H. P. Our correspondent who uses this sigoature, will perceive that some of his ideas had been anticipated. For the rest, we return our respectful acknowledgements, with a hope that he will see his expectations realised, in the speedy establishment of a proper vehicle for the wide diffusion of correct ideas on the great subject of political economy.
We have received from Capt. Partridge, Principal of the Military Academy, Middletown, a letter containing some highly valuable thoughts on education, along with a pamphlet furnishing an account of his interesting seminary, to which we shall embrace the earliest opportunity of inviting the attention of our readers. We owe Capt. Partridge our best thanks for his prompt and kind attention to our queries, and hope that the heads of other institutions will also put it in our power, as early as possible, to record their plans and regulations.
Some books, of which we should have been happy to give a notice, were received too late for the present number. They will be duly attended to in our next.
An article of intelligence on the Boston Scientific Library, was prepared for our present number; but we regret to find ourselves compelled to postpone it, till The publication of No. 3.
Subjects of Instruction in an Infant School. It cannot be too frequently urged upon those who have the care of the education of infants, that the quantity of knowledge which it is possible to communicate to the mind, is a question of the least importance. The present intellectual capacity of children, is not therefore a suitable measure of the instruction which may be given.
In the education of infants, three objects must be kept in view, as guides to the superintendent in his selection of the subjects of instruction. The first object of infant education, is, to bring the mind itself into action, and to improve its faculties. The second is, to prepare the child for the discipline of the schools in which he may be destined to pursue his education, after he has left the infant establishment; and the third, to improve the tone of his bodily powers and health, in order to the removal of the natural impediments which might oppose themselves to the progress of his proposed education.
In discussing the subjects of instruction which are suggested by the first of these, I will suppose, that whatever other mental powers may offer themselves to general education in man, as an intellectual and moral being, there are four which seem to be peculiarly within the province of the system which we are now considering. We must propose to ourselves to improve the memory, the judgement, the conscience, and the heart.
Among other things, then, which will hereafter be mentioned, the memory of an infant may with excellent effect be exercised in the attainment of some of the more simple principles of number, or the VOL 1.
various useful tables; in learning some of the more plain moral precepts, the more simple texts of scripture, or hymns in the plainest and most familiar language; together with whatever else may, in the judgement of the teacher, be calculated to aid the future efforts of the child, in the attainment of knowledge.
The teacher can be at no loss for subjects of instruction. He may commence, however, from those things which are present with the senses, which convey directly ideas to the mind, through the eye, or the ear, or the touch. He may next proceed to those which are absent; and, in the progress of his attempt to call this faculty of his little school into correct action, he may at last suggest to their inquiring minds those things which are contingent or possible. Color, form, posture, and other accidents of things, may be the subjects of idea, of comparison, and of judgement. The room around him, the garden, the fields, the common instruments of a life of labor, will offer those things on which he may lead forth the early energies of the infant. The arts also, as far as they may possibly be subject to the observation of a passing child, and the trades, by which the sustenance of their families is obtained, may in succession be brought forward; and he may be taught to think accurately, and, according to his capacity and the small range of language which is possessed by him, to define correctly.
MORAL POWERS.-Some difference of opinion seems to exist on the best mode of cultivating the moral powers in the early age of infancy. The question is one of the utmost importance, and one on which the success or failure, the benefit or the uselessness of the system of infant schools very materially depends. It cannot then be doubted, I presume, that howsoever ignorant children may be of the particulars of true morals, there is a certain consciousness of right and wrong, which is coeval with the first rays of rational light in the mind. It is the business of true morality to give practical force to these incipient energies, and to bring the habitual pursuit of that which is right, and the habitual avoidance of that which is wrong, to form a constituent part of the active life of the future man; for it is contrary to all just analogy to believe that, although all other human faculties are capable of cultivation and improvement, the conscience will approach to its perfection without adventitious aid. It would have been well for human society, if the correction of this faculty had, at all times, formed one principal object in the education of the young; and if it had thus kept pace with the improvement of the intellectual powers, and the strength and energy which have been given to the memory.
Now, although the mind of infants, at the early age at which they are admitted into these schools, is not capable of the intellectual reception of religion, as a system of doctrines, it may never