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Book Notices, &c.
"OUR YOUNG FOLKS," published by Ticknor and Fields, Boston, Mass., is the most popular periodical of the kind in existence. It can hardly be improved.
" THE NATION."-One of the best literary papers in the country; should be well supported by the teachers of this state. E. L. Godkin & Co., Publishers, 130, Nassau St., New York.
" THE LITTLE CORPORAL” is the most entertaining publication for the young that we have ever examined. We cannot see how it can possibly have a superior, or if it could have, how the young folks could possibly wish for anything better.-(Pennsylvania Teacher.)
ERASABLE SCHOOL TABLETS.-We acknowledge the receipt of these very useful and convenient Tablets. They are economical even if the teacher has to purchase them. One can hardly believe the amount of confusion and noise that is prevented by their use. They are cheap and durable. Address American Tablet Co. Boston.
Æsop's FABLES. We have received this very neat book from the publishers, Fowler 'and Wells, of New York. It makes a beautiful present to a scholar or a child, and contains among its lessons many valuable precepts.
It is beautifully illustrated, bound in crimson muslin with bevelled edges, and is sold for the low price of one dollar.
DRAWING FROM OBJECTS.-A Manual for the Teachers and Pupils of Common Schools. By Prof. John Goodison, Instructor in Drawing and Geography in the Michigan State Normal School. New York: Ivizon, Phinney, Blakeman & Co. Chicago : S. C. Griggs & Co.
Drawing, a long neglected branch of study in our Public Schools is treated of in this work, in a masterly manner by the author, who is a teacher of great experience in Normal and graded schools. He has adopted this plan of drawing from objects after a long trial of different methods. In this work are full instructions accompanying the different steps, so that anv person of ordinary intelligence can readily teach it.
So important is the question of education to a community, that any hints or suggestions drawn from experience must be useful. It is with this view only that I venture to give some results of my own experience as a teacher of long standing.
Of one fact I have been I suppose in common with most other teachers—long aware, and that is, the extreme unwillingness shown by the pupils of our common schools towards advancing themselves in English composition.
It is often with me, as I suppose it is with others, too, a matter of annoyance, not to say painful regret, to find that on “composition day" no efforts of any importance have been made to meet the express requirements of the occasions. Now, grant that some of the fault may primarily rest with the teacher, whose commands should be enforced, so as to meet with scarcely less than implicit and unqualified obedience. To promote this end in some measúre, as to try to overcome this juvenile distate--this literary incapacity-I propose to lay down a simple mode of proceeding. In this I shall not follow the forms and rules of writers on this subject, nuither shall I, out of my own head, devise forms and rules; but I shall rather prefer to take the language itself, beginning with the simplest enunciations of thought, and assist the pupil to analyze them, so as to deduce for himself the fundamental facts and elementary principles of the English tongue. This process shall consist of the forms of the language, or its grammar; the productions of the language, or its literature; and the progress of the language, or its history. Having these facts placed before his mind, and aiming
at plainness and simplicity, I will persuade my pupil to write a short composition out of his own mind and head, in this wise. For this purpose, I can suggest that he may take for his subject any one of the sentences given him to parse, at the same time expressing the confident hope that he will try to express his thoughts upon it as well as he possibly can, without hesitancy, even should they prove to be poor and superficial-only to write something, and let that which he writes be his own. That in writing a copy, transcription is right; but in composition it is otherwise, composition being the expression of thought. That he must accustom himself to think, and write down what he thinks and put down nothing else, I would tell him, further, that he would be greatly asssisted in finding materials for composition by putting to his own mind some questions in the subject-matter before him—for instance, suppose the theme or subject is, “One vice is more expensive than many virtues ;” the questions to ask oneself on this are, perhaps, the following:
1st. Do I know the meaning of each word and the import of the whole ?
2d. Is the statement true?
5th. If true, can I write down any fact or anecdote exemplifying its truth, in something I have heard, read, known, &c. ?
6th. If true, can I, by blending together reasoning and fact, produce an essay to illustrate its truth?
In this way ample material for composition may be found. Again, narrative being the easiest kind of composition, I would suggest subjects for short narration. I would desire him to take some home theme, as, "My Own History During a Day, &c." Telling him to be sure not to omit any particular; first writing down on his slate every minute circumstance of the day, such as the time he rose, the meals he took, where he partook of them, the time he left the house, where he went, what he did, whom he met, conversed with, and what was said, &c.; in short, all the day's duties and pleasures, until he retires to bed; persuade him against the folly of supposing that such a subject is unworthy of his notice; tell him that he is learning to inform him. self and can begin well only by beginning with that with which he is
most familiar. Or if poetically inclined, narrate A Morning Walk;
. but never mind that for the present, let rhyme alone for awhile; it is very easy to tag together similar sounds. It is good sense, and good feeling, expressed in good English, that we want to come at, and for this purpose practice in prose is indispensible. Moré añon.
Rules for School Government.
The following rules and regulations have been adopted by the School Board of Distriet No. 5, town of Platteville, for the government of the school in said district :
1st. The teachers of the several departments are required to open the rooms and put them in order at half past eight o'clock in the morning, and to remain there on duty until four o'clock
P. 2nd. The first bell be rung at half past eight in the morning ; second bell at a quarter before nine. Opening exercises to commence at ten minutes before nine. Roll call at nine o'clock. First bell in the aftermoon will be rung at a quarter before one; second bell at five minutes before one.
School to be opened at one o'clock. 3d. Pupils are required to be present at roll call in the morning, and all pupils coming in late will be required to give sufficient reason for such tardiness. /
Pupils are requested to be present at one o'clock in the afternoon and none will be admitted after that time, except those who take lessons in music at that hour.
4th. Pupils are not allowed to absent themselves from school without good reason, and those absent more than three days, without sufficient reasons, will not be admitted to the privileges of the school without permission of the District Board.
5th. Any pupil who shall injure any property belonging to the district, and shall refuse after a reasonable time, to repair the injury, or pay the amount of the damage, shall be suspended from the privileges of the school until the amount of damage is paid.
6th. Pupils are required to maintain at all times a quiet and orderly deportment when in and about the schoolroom, and no obscene or pro
fane language will be allowed under the severest discipline of the school.
7th. Pupils are required to be polite and respectful to their teachers and to each other; to avoid all unnecessary noise in or about the schoolroom; to step lightly on passing up or down' stairs and in passing across
A the school-room floor.
No communications will be allowed except at the time set apart for that purpose.
During the recesses, pupils are noť allowed to leave the school ground without permission.
8th. Any pupil who shall persistently neglect or refuse to obey the above rules and regulations shall be expelled from the school whenever on due examination it shall appear that the interest of the school demands his expulsion'.
A Teacher's Thoughts,
Five minutes of nine : the bell rings, and here, in double file, they
Faces flushed by the keen december wind, and eyes bright with the excitement of play. Up the stairs with springing steps, and on through the halls, until one after another is lost from sight in their respective rooms--and STILL they come! Four hundred boys and girls! What powers for good or evil! What capacity for joy and sorrow! What wil} their future lives be? In what paths will they walk in the years that are coming ? ?
As these questions arise, our thoughts go out to the broad western lands that yet remain to be possessed, and we think that some of these boys may be called there to open farms, build up cities, and lay out railroads, and, mayhap, to open up the mines of mineral wealth with which our country so abounds; and some, too, must remain in our midst to stand, after a while, in the place of our business men, while others may serve the interests of humanity as well in the walks of a professional life. But, be this as it may, each one of them must be the centre of an influence widening with the years and extending beyond time; and in the future of each lies a life-work to be done. Shall be be instructed to do it well?