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be more objects on one board than another. I will give an account of a few of our boards; and that must suffice; or I shall exceed the limits I have prescribed to myself.
The tirst board contains a small piece of gold in its rough state, a piece of gold in its manufactured state, a piece of silver in both states, a piece of copper in both states, a piece of brass in both states, a piece of tin in both states, a piece of lead in both states, a piece of iron in both states, a piece of steel in both states, a piece of tinfoil, a piece of solder, a screw, a clasp nail, a clout nail, a hob nail, a spike nail, a sparable, and a tack.
These articles are all on the board; and the monitor puts his pointer to each article, and teils bis little pupils their names, and encourages them to repeat the names aiter him. When they finish at one post they go to the next.
The next board may contain a piece of hemp, a piece of rope, a piece of string, a piece of bagging, a piece of sacking, a piece of canvas, a piece of hessian, a piece of Scotch sheeting, a piece of unbleached linen, a piece of bleached linen, a piece of diaper linen, a piece of dyed linen, a piece of flax, a piece of thread, a piece of yarn, a piece of ticking, a piece of raw silk, a piece of twisted silk, a piece of woven silk, figured, a piece of wbite plain silk, and a piece of dyed silk, a piece of ribbon, a piece of silk cord, a piece of silk velvet, &c.
The next may contain raw cotton, cotton yarn, sewing cotton, unbleached calico, bleached calico, dimity, jean, fustian, velveteen gause, nankeen, gingham, bed furniture, printed calico, marseilles, flannel, baise, stuff, woollen-cloth and wool, worsted, white, black, and mixed.
The next may contain milled board, paste board, Bristol card, brown paper, white paper of various sorts, white sheep skin, yellow sheep, tanned sheep, purple sheep, glazed sheep, red sheep, calf skin, cow hide, goat skin, kid, seal, pig leather, seal skin, wash leather, beaver, &c.
The next may contain about twenty-five of those wood animals which are imported into this country, and are to be had at the Foreign Toy Warehouses; some of them are carved exceedingly well, and appear very like the real animals.
The next may contain mahogany, and the various kinds of wood. The next may contain prunings of the different fruit trees.
The next may contain the different small articles of ironmongery needles, pins, cutlery, small tools, and every other object that can be obtained small enough for the purpose.
The utility of this mode of teaching must be obvious; for if the children meet with any of those terms in a book which they are reading, they understand it immediately; which would not be the case unless they had seen the object. The most intellectual person would not be able to call things by their proper names, much less describe them, unless he had been taught, or had heard some other person call them by their right names; and we generally learn more by mixing with society, than ever we could do at school. This sort of lessons persons can make themselves; and they will last for many years, and help to lay a foundation for things of more importance at some future period, when perhaps vice will be less encouraged than it is at present, and Virtue encouraged a little more. For it appears to me that whoever denies that virtue is owing to education, denies there is any such thing as virtue; since it proceeds from being taught. And he that hinders the teaching of it, does what he can to root it out of the world.
SYSTEMS OF EDUCATION ESTABLISHED IN UNIVERSITIES,
AND ON THE MEANS OF IMPROVING THEM.
[From Professor Jardine's Outlines of Philosophical Education.] As the object of education in all universities, whether of ancient or modern date, is, to prepare young men for discharging the several duties and offices of life; it is surprising that there should be so little uniformity in the means employed for the attainment of that important end. It was to be expected, no doubt, that the character of the age in which any particular seminary took its rise, as well as the main objects contemplated by those to whom it owed its foundation, should appear impressed upon the scheme of education originally pursued within its walls; but, certainly, it was not less to be expected that, in proportion as knowledge advanced, and the objects of business or ambition assumed a new form, the system of public instruction should undergo a similar and a corresponding change. Such, however, is not found to be the case. On the contrary, in some establishments of this kind, possessing great wealth and antiquity, the statutes of the founder, or the example of former generations, continue to exert a much more powerful influence on the practice of teachers, than any considerations which might be deduced from the extension of science, or even the wants and probable destination of their pupils. So great, indeed, is the difference in the means and system of instruction adopted in the several universities of Great Britain, that it might, for a moment, appear doubtful, whether the minds to be cultivated were really of the same order, and the professional qualifications to be attained had any thing in common.
To remove the prejudice which subsists against every attempt to improve established systems, we should never forget that the general plan of education was formed according to the state of knowledge, and the prevailing pursuits of the period in which it originated ; and consequently that, although it might be perfectly suitable for that particular condition of society, it may prove altogether inadequate to answer the purposes of a subsequent age, possessed of greater information, and a more lofty and varied ambition. The object of Grecian education, for example, was to qualify young men for becoming good members of the commonwealth, by enabling them to acquire such arts and habits, as render their services most available in peace and in war. Among the Romans, again, during the most flourishing period of their government, the main object of public instruction was to prepare their youth for the business of the senate and of the bar; while, in the ages which preceded the revival of learning in Europe, the scheme of instruction pursued in the universities, was almost exclusively adapted to promote those particular studies and accomplishments, by which candidates for holy orders were qualified to offer their services to the church.
In the present state of European society, where the several nations have advanced to nearly the same degree of improvement, and where the objects of public instruction must be very similar, there does not seem to be any good reason why the systems actually followed, with the view of cultivating the moral and intellectual faculties of man, should present such a remarkable discrepancy as they are found to exhibit, both in principle and in detail. This observation applies with still greater force to the universities of the same country, where, as the object of instruction must be the same, the means employed for that end, should not materially differ; and yet, as has been already stated, the plan and matter of study, as well as the discipline of the several institutions, vary so much, that it is difficult to conceive that they have been guided in their proceedings, by a desire to produce the same result.
"he general course of study in every university, may be considered as divided into two parts;—the under-graduate and the professional;--the former having a reference to that preparatory branch of education, which exercises and strengthens the original powers of the mind, without being directed to any particular pursuit; the latter, as the term imports, being occupied with those more limited inquiries which respect the personal views and employments of future life. This distinction is at least sufficiently obvious to form a boundary for the few remarks I have to make on the methods usually adopted in our universities, in both of these departments of public education.
The Under-graduate Course. In all our colleges, a considerable part of the under-graduate course is devoted to the study of Greek and Latin; but, in those of Scotland, the attention is not so exclusively confined to the learned languages, as in the universities of the south. We do not, in this part of the kingdom, attach to classical learning that high, and almost exclusive degree of importance, which is ascrived to it elsewhere; thinking it of greater consequence to the students, to receive instructions in the elements of science, both mental and physical, than to acquire even the most accurate knowledge of the ancient tongues; of which all that is valuable may, it is thought, be obtained without so great a sacrifice of time and labor.
We need not, indeed, be surprised at the exaggerated notions which have been formed, in regard to the value and importance of the ancient languages. They are justly considered as the channels by which science and literature were conveyed to the nations of modern Europe; while the genius and talents displayed in the more celebrated compositions of antiquity,-in the songs of the poet and the declamations of the orator, -continue to exercise that charm on the minds of the learned, which at first arose, perhaps from novelty or gratitude. There is, besides, a hereditary veneration, among scholars, for the works which delighted the illustrious persons whom they have been taught to admire; and which laid the foundation of that immortal same which has kindled their own ambition, and is valued by them as the highest recompense of human talent and industry.
But the practice of devoting so much time to the languages Greece and Rome has been defended on other grounds. It is maintained that the knowledge of these tongues affords a remarkable facility for acquiring others; that they present an excellent model for the study of general granmar, and even the most recon dite principles of thought and speech; and, moreover, that a good classical education qualifies a young man to use, with elegance and propriety, the vernacular language of his country.
It is impossible to deny that these, and perhaps other advantages, result from the study of ancient literature. It is only to be considered, whether all these might not be procured at less expense of time and labor, and without sacrificing other important objects, which ought likewise to make a part of the under-graduate principles of general grammar, and even the particular structure of any individual language, might surely be sufficiently acquired, without that very minute attention to prosodial niceties which oce cupies so much time in several distinguished seminaries. I do not object to such inquiries being pursued by those whose taste and
inclination dispose them to indulge in a microscopic examination of that fine mechanism which distinguishes poetical language, and of which the beauties can only be duly appreciated by such as have been accustomed, from long study, to render the various measures and cadences familiar to their ear. I merely question the expediency of imposing upon all young men, whatever may be their talents, their likings, or their destination, the necessity of devoting so large a portion of the most valuable period of life, to a species of occupation which neither supplies a suitable exercise to the mind, nor rewards exertion by the attainment of useful knowledge.
My object in these remarks will, however, be very much mistaken, if it be supposed that I have any intention to undervalue the advantages of a classical education. But I humbly conceive, that if classical knowledge be not ample, it is, in a great measure useless; and that no time is less profitably spent, than that which is passed in acquiring a mere smattering of the ancient languages. It does not, however, follow, that the literature of antiquity should engross the exclusive attention of young men at college, from day to day, and from term to term, and thereby preclude the study of those more important branches of knowledge which lay the foundation of professional eminence, in the several departinents of active life. The labors of the school boy should not be allowed to employ the more mature talent of the man; nor should the mere study of Latin and Greek words be permitted to supersede the investigation of modern science, and those sublime researches into the properties of matter and of mind, which have remunerated the labors of philosophy during the last two hundred years.
The business of the under-graduate course ought to comprehend, besides the learned languages, the elements of philosophy in all its branches of the science of mind, logic, ethics, geometry, and physics. I speak here only of the elements of those sciences, as alone applicable to the age and acquirements of the student, at this period of his academical life. For it is not to be imagined that any professor will undertake to communicate, in the short time allotted to such pursuits at college, a complete system of principles and deductions, in any one of the departments now specified. A teacher must not expect to carry his pupils, in the course of a few months, to the higher parts of those sciences, which it may, notwithstanding, be proper to put them in the way of studying for themselves. All that he can accomplish, in so short a period, is to open up the path which they are afterwards to pursue, to give directions for their successful progress, and to define the objects which they are to keep in view. By inducing them to employ their intellectual faculties, according to the plan of diligence proposed,