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rangement. Some minor difficulties were caused by adhering to the rule laid down by all of the language Conferences, namely, that two foreign languages should not be begun at the same time, and by limiting the course to four years. A six years' programme would be far easier to construct.
Critical examination of the committee's programmes discloses grave defects in the most important of all, the Classical. It does not provide continuous study in science, for that great department is not represented in the third year at all. History is similarly interfered with, and there would also be a break in the mathematical course if the option given in the fourth year were exercised in favor of history. The difficulty lies, I believe, in trying to include history in a four years' classical course. The classics themselves teach history in an admirable way, if the instruction is good. A wealth of historical knowledge is grouped about the reading of Cæsar, Cicero, and Vergil, Xenophon and Homer, the usual secondary school authors; and in those which are themselves professedly historical, a great gain would follow from a more through study of the subject matter. If history, then, were dropped entirely from this programme, a modern language could be begun in the first secondary school year, the English course extended in the second year, and no break in the science instruction would be necessary.
Defects in the other programmes exist, but they are not so glaring as those just pointed out in the Classical. For instance, there is no continuity in the history course of the Latin-Scientific or Modern Language programme; and in both of the last-named there would be a break in the mathematics course also, should the pupil exercise his option in favor of history.
The following table discloses at a glance in what relation the four programmes stand to each of the four great divisions of secondary school study. The figures in the several columns represent the total
This table brings out other interesting facts. It shows how closely allied are the Latin - Scientific and Modern Language courses, and how small a part natural science is to play in the revised scheme, after all. The one quarter of the whole school time that the scientific Conferences asked to have given to natural science is not so given in any of the programmes, though it is closely approached in three of them.
Although the report itself contains no reference to European experience or practice, it will be interesting to compare the committee's recommendations with the programmes of European secondary schools. Take, for example, the Prussian Gymnasium, the Tertia and Secunda of which nearly correspond to the American secondary school years, and the French Lycée, where the classes known as Cinquième, Quatrième, Troisième, and Seconde are in about the same relation. There the division of time is as follows:
28 30 28
Other Living Lan
boy is called upon for far more work, measured in terms of time, than the American boy; though the difference is not so great as it seems, for "learning lessons" out of school is not so prominent a feature in German as it is in American education. The French boy, under the existing revised programme, does about what is to be expected of the American, but his time is differently distributed. The French device for preventing" scrappy courses from becoming intolerable is to 24 assign them few but long periods. For example, history, in the Lycée, is taught but once a week, but that once it occupies an hour and a half consecutively, so that much more is accomplished than in two periods of forty-five minutes each. As a rule, the recitation or lesson periods in France are considerably longer than those usually found elsewhere.
In spite of the differences between them, however, it is clear that the proposed American Classical programme is not very unlike those in vogue on the Continent. Were the comparison extended to the other programmes, the LatinScientific, the Modern Language, and the English, a similar relation to the French and German programmes of like character would be found to exist. The higher classes of the Gymnasium and Lycée have still a great advantage over the American secondary school in the fact that the work leading up to them is carefully organized and developed, and may be depended upon. The American grammar school, or better, the upper grades of the elementary school, on the contrary, is only here and there efficient. For two generations the so-called grammar school has conspired with the lower or primary grades to retard the intellectual progress of the
18 18 19 19 753 pupil in the interest of "thoroughness." The arithmetic of many puzzles, the formal grammar, and the spelling-book with its long lists of child-frightening words have been its weapons. Slowly and with a struggle these are being wrested from
1 Greek is not begun until the second half of the year. Previous to that time ten hours weekly are given to Latin.
2 This time is divided between observation lessons on rocks and plants and arithmetic.
It is seen at once that the German it. New knowledge is being introduced
to illustrate and illuminate the old, and higher processes to explain and make easier the lower. All this promotes true thoroughness, and also allows the child's mind to grow and develop as nature intended it should, and as it often does in spite of the elementary school, not because of it. Therefore, every year pupils are reaching the high school better prepared for its peculiar work; and it is not unreasonable to hope that in ten years the secondary school may assume, in the case of its youngest pupils, an ability to use simple English correctly, a knowledge of the elements of algebra and geometry, and of some epoch or movement in history. Perhaps even the study of a foreign language will have been begun.
From the standpoint of the elementary school, therefore, the Committee of Ten is not unreasonable in its ideal, nor have the Conferences proposed anything that is impracticable. The same is true when the report is viewed from the standpoint of the colleges, though here, too, reform and improvement are necessary. As is well known, college admission examinations not only differ widely among themselves, but vary from year to year. Perhaps no one of them is too high to admit of a well-taught boy entering college at seventeen, but many are so low that the same boy ought to pass them successfully at fourteen, or even earlier. The colleges have been injuring higher education in America by giving their own idiosyncrasies as to admission examinations free scope, instead of agreeing together upon a policy.
I do not mean that the admission examinations of all colleges should be uniform; that is not necessary. But, to quote from the report, "it is obviously desirable that the colleges and scientific schools should be accessible to all boys or girls who have completed creditably the secondary school course." If the recommendations of the Committee of Ten are carried out, and there is every reason to hope that they will be, the "
pletion of a secondary school course" will have a definite meaning, and the colleges can deal with it accordingly. The graduate of a secondary school will have had four years of strong and effective mental training, no matter which of the four school programmes he has followed, and the college can safely admit him to its courses. This single step will bring about the articulation of the colleges and scientific schools on the one hand with the secondary schools on the other, articulation that has long been recognized as desirable for both classes of institutions and for the country.
The question will naturally arise, - it arose in the minds of the Committee of Ten, Can the improvements suggested be effectually carried out without a very considerable improvement in the training of the teachers who are to do the work? To this question but one answer, a negative one, can be given. But, on the other hand, the opportunities now available for the higher training of secondary schoolteachers are many times as numerous and as valuable as they were a decade ago. It is true that the hundreds of normal schools are accomplishing very little in this direction, even the best of them; but the colleges and universities, where the mass of secondary teachers will always be educated and trained, have now awakened to a sense of the responsibility that rests upon them. Harvard and Yale, Columbia and Cornell, Michigan and Illinois, Colorado and Stanford, and many others have organized special departments for the study of education, and one or two of them are manned and equipped more thoroughly than any similar departments in Europe. The effect of this great expansion of activity in the study of education cannot fail to be widely felt within the next few years. The colleges have needed, and some of them still need, an enlargement of sympathies, as do the normal schools. The colleges have focused their attention and energy too largely upon their own special work, and have paid no
heed to what was going on about and beneath them. The normal schools have thought it sufficient to study more or less psychology, and to expound more or less dubious "methods" of teaching, and have neglected the larger field of genuine culture and the relative values of studies. Better apparatus and more teachers will not of themselves lift the college or the normal school out of its rut. Only a full appreciation of the relations of these institutions to the work of education as a whole can do that.
And finally, what is the effect of this prolonged and earnest investigation upon that ideal of a liberal education that has so long been held in esteem among us? It will not have escaped notice that only one of the committee's four programmes makes a place for the study of Greek, while one excludes both Greek and Latin. It is true that these are recommended as ideal arrangements, and that it is expressly stated in the report to be the unanimous opinion of the committee that, "under existing conditions in the United States as to the training of teachers and the provision of necessary means of instruction, the two programmes called respectively Modern Languages and English must, in practice, be distinctly inferior to the other two." Nevertheless, it seems clear that the committee has been able to disentangle the real from the accidental in our conception of a liberal education, and has put the former forward in all its strength. It has not forgotten the precept of Aristotle, that "there are branches of learning and education which we must study with a view to the enjoyment of leisure," and that "these are to be valued for their own sake." "It is evident, then," the philosopher continues, "that there is a sort of education in which parents should train their sons, not as being useful or necessary, but because it is liberal and noble. Whether this is of one kind only, or of more than one, and if so, what they are and how they are to be imparted, must
hereafter be determined." It is just this determination that the committee has made; and it is a determination that each age, perhaps each generation, must make for itself. Between a diminution of the time given to classical study and a relapse into quasi-barbarism there is no necessary relation of cause and effect. May not the American say, as did Paulsen of his countrymen, that "idealism generally, if we will use this word of so many meanings, is a thing which is not implanted from without, but grows from within, and that, in particular, the idealism in the character of the German people has deeper roots than the Greek and Latin lessons of our gymnasia"?
Mr. Lowell's hope, expressed so eloquently at the Harvard Anniversary, will not be disappointed by the recognition of a broader basis for human culture. Every one may accept the recommendations of the Committee of Ten, and still say with him: "I hope the day may never come when the weightier matters of a language, namely, such parts of its literature as have overcome death by reason of their wisdom and the beauty in which it is incarnated, such parts as are universal by reason of their civilizing properties, their power to elevate and fortify the mind, I hope the day may never come when these are not predominant in the teaching given here. Let the Humanities be maintained undiminished in their ancient right. Leave in the traditional preeminence those arts that were rightly called liberal; those studies that kindle the imagination, and through it irradiate the reason; those studies that manumitted the modern mind; those in which the brains of finest temper have found alike their stimulus and their repose, taught by them that the power of intellect is heightened in proportion as it is made gracious by measure and symmetry. Give us science, too, but give first of all, and last of all, the science that ennobles life and makes it generous. . . . Many-sidedness of cul
ture makes our vision clearer and keener
in particulars. For after all, the noblest definition of Science is that breadth and impartiality of view which liberates the mind from specialties, and enables it to
organize whatever we learn, so that it becomes real Knowledge by being brought into true and helpful relation with the rest." Nicholas Murray Butler.
HIS VANISHED STAR.
THE anomaly of administering upon one's own estate Lorenzo Taft was permitted in some sort to experience. A definite realization of finality attended his meditations, as he sat bending over the embers in the great fireplace of the store, in the rain-clouded morning that rose upon the conclusion of his labors of removing the still and destroying all its approaches. His vocation was gone, and naught remained. He had no more affinity for a law-abiding occupation than a fox or a wolf. The possible profits that might stick to his hands in the process of the conversion of the goods upon the shelves from the wholesale ratio to the retail failed to allure him, for the store had never been aught but a "blind." The furrow was no thoroughfare. That wild gambling with the chances of the Isun and wind and the rain in its season, and often out of its season, known as farming, and doubtless permitted by the law only because it insures its own punishment, was risky enough to jump with his humor, but the stakes were hopelessly inadequate. He could not look forward, and the glance backward over the shoulder needs a good conscience to commend the prospect.
Now and again he lifted his heavy boot and kicked the embers together fiercely, as if at great odds with his thoughts and his own counsels. Like many another, he undervalued his success, its hairbreadth jeopardies and its difficulty
of attainment, now that it was fairly secured. It seemed to him a slight thing, the device of his quick wits to insure his safety, and his satisfaction in its triumphant exploitation had already evanesced. Had it been possible to reëstablish the status of yesterday, doubtless he would have hardily risked the discovery of the still, the disclosure of Larrabee, the capture of Espey, Dan Sykes's drunken tongue, and, as a result of these, the "shootin'-irons" of the "revenuers and the sentence of the federal court. But gunpowder as a factor in a scheme admits of no second thoughts.
He even upbraided his own acumen that, in the emergency, he had sought with an eye single the safety of himself, his one remaining comrade, and the apparatus, regardless of all considerations of enmity. But now that judgment was satisfied and escape certain, vengeance
Whenever he thought of Larrabee outside, triumphant, free, enjoying an absolute immunity from the law by reason of the destruction of the moonshiners' lair, which rendered the discovery of his complicity impossible, Taft frowned heavily and swore beneath his breath, and kicked the unoffending embers into a new adjustment, so bitter was the fact that his own safety made Larrabee's protection complete. Even poor Dan Sykes's exile and doubtless the young sot was well on the way to Texas by this time was as necessarily a measure taken in Larrabee's behalf as if it were