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Wonders of the Circulation.
themselves ; and no sooner is this ventricle full of this dark col. ored, impure blood, than it immediately contracts and squeezes its contents into an artery which carries it to the lungs, where it is purified, and then sent back to the heart in another set of vessels or veins, to be conveyed out again, in its new and healthy condition, to all parts of the system.-One thing, however, it is desirable you should understand. At the instant when the heart contracts on one side to send out blood to all parts of the body, it also contracts on the other side, to send it to the lungs to be purified. This makes the process more simple than at first view it would otherwise seem to be.
This then is, in few words, the course of the circulation of the blood, in the human body. The whole mass of blood, in a middling sized adult, is estimated at from twentyfive to thirty pounds; or a quantity somewhat exceeding a common sized pail full; and a quantity equal to all this, goes through the heart, as well as through the lungs, once in from three to four minutes. The circulation has sometimes been regarded as double, or formed of two circles united at the heart or centre, as are the two circles which form the figure 8. In this view, the lower half of the figure represents the path of the blood, as it passes from the heart round through the arteries and veins, and back again to the heart; and the upper half of it, the course it takes from the heart to the lungs to be purified, and back again to the heart or centre.
The use of the circulation, that is to say, the purposes which are subserved to the living system by having a pail full of blood pass over the whole body fifteen or twenty times an hour, or from three hundred and sixty to four hundred and eighty times in a day-I have not now time to show. All I can do at the present time, is to remind you of the goodness as well as wonder-working power of God, in keeping up such a course of incessant action. Think of a pail full of blood rushing through a small human heart, every three or four minutes, day after day, aod year after year! Think, too, of the heart's incessant and curious labor! Why, its contractions or beats, at only sixty a minute, amount to 3600 an hour ; 86,400 a day; and 31,536,000 a year. In a life, supposing it to be protracted to 80 years, and the beats to average only 60 a minute in every part of it, the amount would be no less than 2,522,880,000.
Pres. Lindsley on Common Schools.
INFLUENCE OF COLLEGES ON COMMON SCHOOLS.
We spoke, not long since, of a speech in behalf of the University of Nashville, by Pres. Lindsley ; and promised a further notice of it. The following is a brief extract, showing his views of the influence of colleges and universities on common schools and common school education. So highly do we regard his sentiments in general, on education and instruction, and so generally do they accord with our own, that, though we have hitherto thought less favorably than he, of the influence of colleges, we are quite willing to hear his opinions, even on this point.
The university,' says he, has ever been the friend and the nursery of common schools, when left to its own natural freedom of action. In modern times, wherever the university has flourished, untrammelled and unrestricted by jealous, arbitrary authority, there the common school has taken root and prospered also.
• This fact is notorious, indisputable and undisputed. In no country, at this day, do we behold the slightest approach to a good common school system, except where the university is honored and liberally sustained. Scotland, Prussia, Germany, Holland, New England and New York may serve as proof and comment. I hold the attempt to create and foster common schools, without the aid of the university, to be utterly vain and nugatory. It cannot be done. But establish an efficient, freeworking university any where-whether among the Turks, the Tartars or the Hottentots-and the common school will spontaneously grow up around it and beneath its influence, as certainly as light and heat flow from the sun in the firmament. It is in fact the great luminary of the intellectual firmament.
The common school is the child and not the parent-the effect and not the cause-of the university. The university will furnish the teachers and the learning which are indispensable to the inferior schools and seipinaries : and it will awaken the desire and the ambition among all classes to acquire knowledge and to support schools.
• No man can teach what he does not thoroughly understand. Whatever art or science he professes to teach others, he must first learn himself. If you would have competent teachers of reading, writing, arithmetic, grammar, history, geography, the constitution and laws of the land, and whatever else our youth ought to learn at school in order to become useful citizens, you
How to obtain American Teachers.
must first provide for their proper training. That is, you must send them to the higher schools and colleges and universities of your own or some other State.
A thousand young men ought now to be thus in training, or in a course of preparation for the business of schoolkeeping, (for Tennessee.] Send them to the University, at the State's expense, and they will not fail to become qualified for the service in due time. Or, enable the University, by suitable endowments, to open her doors to all corners, and to educate every poor talented youth without charge ; and you will soon be supplied with indigent but accomplished scholars, who will be glad to teach for a livelihood. They will themselves become pioneers and missionaries in the cause of education. They will search out and expose the wants and destitution of the people, and will plant schools in every village, and in every neighborhood, where children can be found.
* Tennessee, with her present ample resources, might organize and endow a University which could impart gratuitous instruction to all her studious and deserving youth ; and thus eventually elevate the standard of education, and insure its adtages to every portion and order of its rapidly increasing population.
Having on various occasions heretofore, discoursed at large on the subject of common schools having reviewed the systems which obtain in all our States and in several countries in Europe-having expressed my opinions freely upon each, and also upon the expediency of providing schools for the education of teachers, &c., it was not my purpose, in the above remarks, to do more than barely to point out the dependence of common schools upon the University. Our poor college graduates will, after all, prove our best common school-masters, even though they may not be ambitious to teach for life. Well educated and clever Americans will not be content to work like Prussians, in comparative obscurity and poverty. The planter's overseer or negro-driver is better paid for his learned labors, than any common school teacher in all the valley of the Mississippi.
Mistakes in Selecting School Books.
CONFESSIONS OF A SCHOOLMASTER. No. VIII.
very one at age. These Book, and Webader, the
MISTAKES IN SELECTING SCHOOL BOOKS. For some time past, the only books which had been used in the school where I now was, as reading books, were the New Testament, the Columbian Orator, the English Reader, the reading lessons in Webster's Spelling Book, and Webster's Elements of Useful Knowledge. These had been read over and over; and every one at all acquainted with them knows, that except the testament and spelling book, are very poorly calculated to interest children, or instruct them in the art of reading.
I felt, most sensibly, the want of some new reading book for the school, especially for the older classes. But such was the universal fear of a little expense in the instruction of children, and so bitter were the usual complaints against a teacher who proposed a new school book, that it was almost as much as one's reputation was worth to attempt it. I however, at length ventured.
The plan was first proposed to the district committee. He did not object to it; thought a book was much needed ; and said that he did not think many would be opposed to it. I rejoiced at my prospect of success, and already began to take courage.
But what book did I propose ? he asked. I told him I had not decided ; that there many excellent books. He spoke with much warmth, of the “ Sequel to the English Reader. There are some exceedingly smart pieces in that book said he, and I should like to have it introduced.
In regard to the intrinsic merit and excellence of the selections in the Sequel,' I had not the least doubt. But I had some doubts whether it was exactly adapted to the wants of the school, and whether it would interest them; and I told him so. He said we must endeavor to put such things-books among the rest-into the hands of children as we thought were best for them, whether they liked them or not; and that they were, often, but very poor judges of what was rcally best for them.
This, in the abstract, was sound reasoning; and I was quite unable as well as indisposed to ineet it. True the style of the
Sequel’ was so elevated, that my pupils could not always understand it; but then I thought we must bring them up to it.
The expense of the book was a serious objection, as it would cost as much as two books of some kinds which might have been selected. However, one good book was deemed better than two poor ones ; and the Sequel would be a work which it was thought would " stand by,” for a long time.
Variety of Books necessary.
My present opinion is, that other things being equal, the two cheaper books would be far preferable to the dearer one. I think novelty or change-some degree of it—is a very proper stimulant to the young. I would no more confine their lessons to the same book, than their bodies to the same dress, or their stomachs to the same dish. One distinguished teacher among us, insists that every child who is pursuing a science, say geography or arithmetic, ought to study a.great variety of authors. If this is so, it is much more true that a variety of reading books is indispensable.
But we decided on introducing the Scquel; and it was accordingly procured. In general it was favorably received. One wealthy lady indeed complained that it was a "dreadful dear book," and it appeared to her something cheaper might have done just as well. However, as the teacher and the committee both said it was a “smart” book, she would not complain ; she would try to pay for it.
In fact, it was much more favorably received among the pupils themselves, than could have been anticipated. We are frequently gratified—as if it were an honor done to our understanding-when people present very wise things to our ears, taking it for granted that we fully understand them. Thus we sometimes listen to a sermon or an oration with great pleasure, though we know very little of its meaning. This is not said in justification, but in palliation of the measure.
During the first winter of my school keeping, there had been a similar occurrence. Some new school book was needed ;- so I thought, and so did many others. The selection having been confided to me, I decided on the Introduction to the American Orator, by Increase Cooke, of New Haven, Conn. It was a learned work, prepared by a learned man, and wholly unexceptionable in its moral character and tendency. Still it was not at all fit for the pupils, as time did not fail to show. The book was used a few years, when it gradually disappeared, and other and more popular books supplied its place.