Billeder på siden

moting good. Few boys, in their after-career, ever apply a Greek or Latin quotation to any practical purpose. To men who intend to become professional scholars classical studies will probably be useful, and certainly will set off their accomplishments with great decorative effect. Let, therefore, ample provision be made for their critical study in our universities. But I respectfully submit that the time has arrived when they should be optional studies only, and should no longer be a condition of admission. But a little more of this in the sequel.

In primary education the lessons are necessarily the same for both, but it seems to be somewhat different when it is a matter of superior education. The question of common studies is a very different one from that of the equality of sexes. Boys and girls are of the same race, they live on the same air, eat the same food, and are subject to the same laws of life and health, and yet a boy is a boy, and a girl is a girl,and I think that women must get over the idea of pursuing a study simply because men choose to do it, or are compelled to do it. While I would exclude woman from no work or study she might prefer, yet there are some in which her peculiar powers and aptitudes fit her to excel, and of which her circumstances in after-life require the constant application. For instance, the great majority of women are destined to become wives and mothers. The arts of domestic life, and the correlated sciences will, therefore, have a bearing, not only upon their whole life, but upon that of their families. Aside from household duties, there are a multitude of questions in domestic hygiene, physiology, and in regard to the dwelling, the diet, the clothing, and their relation to the climate, and the season, and the atmosphere, which will open up a field

of the most splendid and useful information. The education of women, in this general knowledge of practical principles, presents a wide contrast to the mental training of a girl in an ordinary boarding-school. At a meeting of the French Academy, Dr. Dally read a paper, not long since, in which he showed how careless and forced habits of posture produce deformity of the vertebræ of the neck and loins, and finally a curvature of the spine. He adds that this is more usual and prolonged with girls, for they are, generally speaking, required to remain seated for longer periods than boys, and the germ of some distortion is often left for life, and that these ills are more likely to occur at the period of youth, when the bony structure has not acquired the strength to properly support the rapidlyincreasing weight of the body.

These remarks are confirmed by observation, and in ninety-nine cases in a hundred the tendency to distortion was formerly given when the girl was under the discipline of a school for "young ladies."

No doubt sounder principles now very generally prevail in our schools. An English traveler in this country writes as follows to a London paper: "Last fall and winter I visited many of the schools and colleges in the United States. I was especially struck with Mount Holyoke College, in Massachusetts. The curriculum of study there is sound and deep, rather than extensive, while the household work is performed by the girls. I never saw a brighter or healthier-looking set of young women in any school or college anywhere."

A great change is observable. It is becoming clear in the light of common sense, that a knowledge of the laws of health and of the science of domestic life are equally


invaluable to woman as a mother and a wife. must do much for their own sex. They know better than man its trials, its wants, and aspirations. A fuller education will develop their faculties, and there seems no reason why a college system could not be adapted for their instruction. I do not believe that the industrial education of women will lessen the grace or refinement of their nature, but, on the contrary, it will enable them to enter upon new fields of duty, develop their natural aptitudes, apply their powers to such acquisitions as will be most useful and interesting, and at the same time qualify them to fulfill all the relations arising out of domestic circumstances. (See Appendix.)


Education for hand and eye-Method of instruction at Athens-Public schools-Improved methods-Main facts in regard to public schoolsOptimistic views of the same-Other lessons than those of the schoolroom-Statement of the same-Our obligations to the public schoolsWant of practical education-Manual training a necessary part of-Foreign designers and workmen-Jewelers' Association-Speech at banquet of-Necessity of art-education to American artisan-Mechanic arts passing out of our hands --Rush for clerical employment-An illustration of their dependence-Decorative art-Science applied to necessities— Telegraphy, photography, aniline-Artistic employments, their effect -Education enhanced by manual exercise-Eclectic education-The highest aim-Intellectual culture not alone education-Our physical constitution-Description of-Association of, in elevating the mindIn expressing its ideas in tangible forms—Their intimate co-operation -Equality of education, the true method-Standard of education in Europe-Commensurate education-Duty of the State-Conclusions from, classified-First, second, third, fourth-Technological education -Not for the mass of children-Object of studies-Right of the State -American Institute of Instruction-Use of tools-Reforms in matters of education difficult-Science in the colleges.

HOWEVER much we may differ about the causes or the remedies, it is manifest that this branch of education has been entirely overlooked until quite recently. Intellectual studies, as they are called, have alone been thought worthy of being introduced into our systems of instruction, while eye and hand culture have not only been disregarded, but absolutely looked down upon with a lofty


No just conception can be had of their immense value to our structure without their co-education with the brain; their joint sphere of action embraces all employments, the sciences, the arts, agriculture, manufactures, and inventions, together with the application of all these to the necessities and enjoyments of society. To their combined influence and intimate co-operation we owe the conveniences of life, and the masterpieces of art. In this view it is impossible to discern under what guise these executive organs of the mind-these twin-sisters of the soul-are not to be considered as having something to do with education. We teach our young men to repeat Greek verses; but it is hardly possible to conceive of a greater contrast in the matter of education than we present to the ancient method of instruction. The youth of Athens were made the recipients of a practical scholarship. They were not required to study two dead languages for the best period of their school-days. The human structure was regarded as a whole, and instructed as a whole. The court of the Areopagus appointed masters to superintend the education of children, and on this they bestowed the most particular attention. Games, gymnastics, and exercises were prescribed for the young men, that their bodies might be expanded and strengthened, and all parts of the frame developed in harmony with the higher faculties of the mind. Hence came their superlative beauty of person, their hardihood, their endurance, and physical health. They were afterward taught by public masters in the rules of art, and this was a material object in the education of all the citizens. They were instructed, from first to last, in the duties of morality and religion, the respect due to parents, a reverence for

« ForrigeFortsæt »