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interest. Compare your story with the incident in the life of Ruth, the resolute-hearted and purespirited daughter-in-law of Naomi. When Naomi, widowed, broken in spirit, and absolutely impoverished, set out for Bethlehem, she advised Orpah and Ruth to seek their own fortunes in the land of their nativity. But Ruth embraced her mother-in-law, and said: "Entreat me not to leave thee, and to return from following after thee; for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge; thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God; where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried." Here is a sublime surrender of

Ruth's Example a noble woman to a great purpose. God sustained Ruth. She

her resolution fitted her to "The book of the genera

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became the great soul be. Read the sequel: tions of Jesus Christ . . And Boaz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse; and Jesse begat David the king . . And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ." to plant a high purpose in a human soul. God will make it in his own time serve great ends. It is worth while to work for the moment when your pupil rises at his best, and makes declaration for the Christian life. Not the many things, but the decisive things, mold our lives.

It is a holy thing

If you have carefully considered the phases of attention so far discussed, you will readily understand that voluntary attention is of questionable value in teaching young children,—that involuntary attention is tremendously significant, and that it is made so by the intimate relation it sustains to interest. The Herbartians in Germany and in America alike agree that the doctrine of interest is the most valuable doctrine

The Doctrine of

announced to teachers in a halfcentury. Herbart's "Science of Education" and De Garmo's "Interest and Education" are typical treatises. upon this significant phase of teacher equipment.

"But," asks the teacher, "how am I to ascertain the interests of childhood, and so secure positive attention in my class?" I wish I could in a sentence answer that question. How I have longed for the magic words! They have not yet been discovered; but some thoughts may be submitted later that will in a way clarify the vague longings of the sincere student.


For testing one's grasp of the subject, and
for discussion in Teacher-Training Classes.

Can you detect any connection between successive stages of consciousness?

Try to stop the stream of consciousness by an act of will. Is it an easy or a difficult task?

How would you define attention?

What is the value of the advice, "Pay no attention to it?"

Two of the three types of attention are here presented, -what are they, and can you anticipate a third?

Will punishment increase attention? Why?

Recall to your mind times in your own life when you were all attention, and explain the reason for your rapt


Just what is interest? How does it war with the will?

When children are not attentive is it evidence of deliberate hostility? If not, of what is it evidence?

Cite examples from the teachings of Jesus that clearly indicate his recognition of the importance of interest.

Is the human soul innately clothed with interest in God and things of his kingdom?

Here is the pupil,-here is the lesson. How may interest in the former be aroused for the latter?



TO UNDERTAKE an analysis of the inter

ests in children that control attention is impossible. These interests are both varied and subtle. They defy enumeration. They in a large measure explain our differences and account for our various careers. We act in response to our feelings. Our feelings organize themselves about our interests, hence our interests control our conduct. To live right one's interest must be quickened for the right. In this field of interest, the field of experience, the teacher must find what Patterson Du Bois calls "the point of contact." His excellent treatise under this title1 every teacher should read.

If parents and teachers of children in the primary school could be led to realize the significance of creating right interests in young souls, how joyous would become the after-processes in teaching, how readily would growing souls feed upon the truth, how splendid would be the happy procession of eager footsteps upward into

The Feelings and

1 The Point of Contact in Teaching.

holy living! I venture the assertion that our weak spot in education is our neglect of the education of the feeling-life of the child. When we seek guidance upon this vitally significant phase of mental growth we are met at the outset with the fact that the theme has not been in any adequate way considered. The great and potent feeling-life of the child is practically unknown and overlooked in our zeal to secure great issues in the thought-life of the child. William James points out the significant fact that the native interests of children lie altogether in the sphere of sensation. His discussion of this is most suggestive.1

We are interested in those things which in our past have for some reason become significant to us. If now a new truth is to be given, it is wise to link it with what we already know. Thus we compel the pupil's attention by appealing to his interest.

A fine example of good teaching is recorded in Acts 17:22-31. Paul was in a strange city. It was the capital of culture. Its citizens were devoutly interested in their religion. They had gods innumerable. For these gods they entertained the greatest reverence. Paul knew this. He was quick to discover the basis of their interest. He begins his discourse by a reference to 1 Talks on Psychology and Life's Ideals, chapter ix.

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