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one man great in educational science, Joseph Payne, always spoke of him as his master.

§ 3. In the following summary of Jacotot's system I am largely indebted to Joseph Payne's Lectures, which he published in the Educational Times in 1867, and which I believe Dr. J. F. Payne has lately reprinted in a volume of his father's collected papers.

§ 4. Jacotot was born at Dijon, of humble parentage, in 1770. Even as a boy he showed his preference for "selfteaching." We are told that he rejoiced greatly in the acquisition of all kinds of knowledge that could be gained by his own efforts, while he steadily resisted what was imposed on him by authority. He was, however, early distinguished by his acquirements, and at the age of twenty-five was appointed sub-director of the Polytechnic School. Some years afterwards he became Professor of "the Method of Sciences" at Dijon, and it was here that his method of instruction first attracted attention. "Instead of pouring forth a flood of information on the subject under attention from his own ample stores-explaining everything, and thus too frequently superseding in a great degree the pupil's own investigation of it-Jacotot, after a simple statement of the subject, with its leading divisions, boldly started it as a quarry for the class to hunt down, and invited every member of it to take part in the chase." All were free to ask questions, to raise objections, to suggest answers. The Professor himself did little more than by leading questions put them on the right scent. He was afterwards Professor of Ancient and Oriental Languages, of Mathematics, and of Roman Law; and he pursued the same method, we are told, with uniform success. Being compelled to leave France as an enemy of the Bourbons, he was appointed, in 1818, when he was forty-eight years old,

1. All can learn.

to the Professorship of the French Language and Literature at the University of Louvain. The celebrated teacher was received with enthusiasm, but he soon met with an unexpected difficulty. Many members of his large class knew no language but the Flemish and Dutch, and of these he himself was totally ignorant. He was, therefore, forced to consider how to teach without talking to his pupils. The plan he adopted was as follows:-He gave the young Flemings copies of Fénelon's "Télémaque," with the French on one side, and a Dutch translation on the other. This they had to study for themselves, comparing the two languages, and learning the French by heart. They were to go over the same ground again and again, and as soon as possible they were to give in French, however bad, the substance of those parts which they had not yet committed to memory. This method was found to succeed marvellously. Jacotot attributed its success to the fact that the students had learnt entirely by the efforts of their own minds, and that, though working under his superintendence, they had been, in fact, their own teachers. Hence he proceeded to generalise, and by degrees arrived at a series of astounding paradoxes. These paradoxes at first did their work well, and made noise enough in the world; but Jacotot seems to me like a captain who in his eagerness to astonish his opponents takes on board guns much too heavy for his own safety.

$ 5. "All human beings are equally capable of learning," said Jacotot.

The truth which Jacotot chose to throw into this more than doubtful form, may perhaps be expressed by saying that the student's power of learning depends, in a great measure, on his will, and that where there is no will there is no capacity.

2. Everyone can teach.

§ 6. "Everyone can teach; and, moreover, can teach that which he does not know himself."

Let us ask ourselves what is the meaning of this. First of all, we have to get rid of some ambiguity in the meaning of the word teach. To teach, according to Jacotot's idea, is to cause to learn. Teaching and learning are therefore correlatives: where there is no learning there can be no teaching. But this meaning of the word only coincides partially with the ordinary meaning. We speak of the lecturer or preacher as teaching when he gives his hearers an opportunity of learning, and do not say that his teaching ceases the instant they cease to attend. On the other hand, we do not call a parent a teacher because he sends his boy to school, and so causes him to learn. The notion of teaching, then, in the minds of most of us, includes giving information, or showing how an art is to be performed, and we look upon Jacotot's assertion as absurd, because we feel that no one can give information which he does not possess, or show how anything is to be done if he does not himself know. But let us take the Jacototian definition of teaching -causing to learn-and then see how far a person can cause another to learn that of which he himself is ignorant. 7. Subjects which are taught may be divided into three great classes:-1, Facts; 2, reasonings, or generalisation from facts, ie., science; 3, actions which have to be performed by the learner, i.e., arts.

1. We learn some facts by "intuition," ie., by direct experience. It may be as well to make the number of them as large as possible. No doubt there are no facts which are known so perfectly as these. For instance, a boy who has tried to smoke knows the fact that tobacco is apt to produce nausea much better than another who has picked up

Can he teach facts he does not know?

the information second-hand. An intelligent master may suggest experiments, even in matters about which he himself is ignorant, and thus, in Jacotot's sense, he teaches things which he does not know. But some facts cannot be learnt in this way, and then a Newton is helpless either to find them out for himself, or to teach them to others without knowing them. If the teacher does not know in what county Tavistock is, he can only learn from those who do, and the pupils will be no cleverer than their master. Here, then, I consider that Jacotot's pretensions utterly break down. "No," the answer is; "the teacher may give his pupil an atlas, and direct the boy to find out for himself: thus the master will teach what he does not know." But, in this case, he is a teacher only so far as he knows. For what he does not know, he hands over the pupil to the maker of the map, who communicates with him, not orally, but by ink and paper. The master's ignorance is simply an obstacle to the boy's learning; for the boy would learn sooner the position of Tavistock if it were shown him on the map. "That's the very point," says the disciple of Jacotot. "If the boy gets the knowledge without any trouble, he is likely to forget it again directly. 'Lightly come, lightly go.' Moreover, his faculty of observation will not have been exercised." It is indeed well not to allow the knowledge even of facts to come too easily; though the difficulties which arise from the master's ignorance will not be found the most advantageous. Still there is obviously a limit, If we gave boys their lessons in cipher, and offered a prize to the first decipherer, one would probably be found at last, and meantime all the boys' powers of observation, &c., would have been cultivated by comparing like signs in different positions, and guessing at their mean.

Languages? Sciences?

ing; but the boys' time might have been better employed. Jacotot's plan of teaching a language which the master did not know, was to put a book with, say, "Arma virumque cano," &c., on one side, and "I sing arms and the man, &c." on the other, and to require the pupil to puzzle over it till he found out which word answered to which. In this case. the teacher was the translator; and though from the roundabout way in which the knowledge was communicated the pupil derived some benefit, the benefit was hardly sufficient to make up for the expenditure of time involved.

Jacotot, then, did not teach facts of which he was ignorant, except in the sense in which the parent who sends his boy to school may be said to teach him. All Jacotot did was to direct the pupil to learn, sometimes in a very awkward fashion, from somebody else.*

§ 8. 2. When we come to science, we find all the best authorities agree that the pupil should be led to principles if possible, and not have the principles brought to him. Men like Tyndall, Huxley, H. Spencer, J. M. Wilson have spoken eloquently on this subject, and shown how valuable scientific teaching is, when thus conducted, in drawing out the faculties of the mind. But although a schoolboy may be led to great scientific discoveries by anyone who knows the road, he will have no more chance of making them with an ignorant teacher than he would have had in the days of the Ptolemies. Here again, then, I cannot understand how the teacher can teach what he does not know. He may, indeed, join his pupil in investigating principles, but he

* Here Jacotot's notion of teaching reminds one of the sophism quoted by Montaigne-"A Westphalia ham makes a man drink. Drink quenches thirst. Therefore a Westphalia ham quenches thirst."

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