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excess of the school's capacity led to parental dissatisfaction. Rather than build other schools the pupils were scattered among the grammar schools, where high school grades were provided for them. Notwithstanding the favorable report of a special committee appointed to investigate the monitorial schools, they were soon discontinued. Their success was the cause of their defeat.
Mr. Fowle was in different ways connected with the Boston schools for seventeen years. In his later years he was chiefly known by his free scientific lectures, which were through a period of several years attended by thousands of devotees.
The foregoing facts in the personal history of Bell, Lancaster, and Fowle have been related, not to reflect glory on particular individuals, but because the true merits of the question before us can not be properly understood without the information which these lives furnish. So far as I have been able to discover in the investigation of this system, the men who succeeded with it were uniformly of that class who will sacrifice case and comfort for a principle-men with a definite aim, a philanthropic spirit, and a persevering and fearless disposition. The chief characteristics of Pestalozzi's school were monitorial and industrial. He believed that children should be exercised in the arts of industry, and through this industry they should teach one another,
The application of the monitorial system to a school will have to be determined by the existing conditions. But certain general features may be outlined sufficient to give an idea of how several hundred children may be handled by one teacher.
Tho schoolhouse mainly consists of one large room. For illustration, I shall suppose it to be arranged for pupils between the ages of 6 and 13 years. The room is about 18 feet wide and of indefinito length, to suit the number of pupils attending. Along one sido are arranged the seats and desks. Each seat is long enough to accommodato 8 pupils. These seats are arranged in groups of four parallel with the side wall and placed one in front of the other. This makes what is called a section. The sections are separated from one another by drop curtains which extend out from the wall far enough to conceal each section from a view of the others. This leaves nearly one-balf of the entire space in front of the sections for general purposes. This space is used by the master for conducting a class in full view of the school and for easel blackboards in front of the sections. The scats of each section are graduated in size according to the size of the pupils. Each section contains all four grades, the primary ones in front and the highest the first from the wall. Each section is in charge of a pupil-teacher of the highest or teacher class. A further division into what is called “drafts” is mado, and prosided over by monitors appointed by the master according to merit. Every class has its separate monitorteacher, and the class unit can of course be made of any desired number of pupils, as determined by the number of monitors. No monitor is required to teach for a longer time than two hours, there being different sets of teacher-pupils and monitors for the differeut hours. Appointment to monitorships are rewards of merit. At stated times tho pupils are taught collectively in groups by the master. This may be done by raising the curtain between certain sections, throwing any desired nuniber of pupils together.
Another and better form of collective teaching is done in galleries. This is done in a room at tho end of the building seated in gallery style. It is here that the master does his real teaching, and where he stimulates to thought, leaving the memorizing and the parts requiring individual practice to the monitors. In the gallery the master teaches pupils of the same grade.
One hour per day, usually in the morning, the master teaches his pupil-teachers, and dwells on both methods and subject-matter. This forms the germ of a normal school, and it was thus that the modern normal school had its beginning. Two classes of monitors were appointed, one for teaching and another for keeping order, arranging materials, reporting misbehavior, and so forth.
From an educational standpoint the monitorial system has its advantages and disadvantages. Among the advantages may be considered the following:
1. In those processes which simply have to be learned and remembered, such as t!:e alphabet, the calling up of words at sight, spelling, and the fundamental rules of arithmetic, and so forth, pupils can teach ono another as well as or better than can a teacher, because of a feeling of freedom and ease in one another's presence and from tho frequent repetitions and familiar ways in which children talk to one another. This is true in the home, and the natures of children are the samo in the school as in the home. Children can teach one another what they really know, i. o., facts which do not require development, as well as or better than the average teacher. There is, I believe, a current fallacy that teachers need methods wore than facts and principles. Children can without methods teach what they kuow better than a teacher can teach what he does not know with a method. Much of our modern normal training consists in the training of teachers in how to teach what they do not know, i. e., what they have not a clear comprehension of. More time should be spent in getting an education and less in methods of imparting it. I have often noticed that an unlettered man will explain a machine he has invented better than a college professor could do it, simply because he understands it.
2. The beneficial effect of acting as pupil and teacher at the same time. All teachers know tlrat we truly learn only when we teach. The sense of responsibility which a pupil selected from his fellows feels can scarcely be overestimated. He prepares his lessons in a way quite impossible with a pupil who has never felt this responsibility. His pride is awakened, and the whole force of his being is aroused to activity.
3. The monitor's position depends on merit, and he is training in the same process of rewards that he will be in after life. It is the natural system; it is a powerful incentive to study, to gain the distinction of teacher.
4. Its disciplinary effect. Any organization which calls for government by tho members themselves is most etiective. This is so cliefly because the individuals aro thus brought into a position to see the side of the governor as well as the side of the governed.
5. The absoluteness of the appointing power of the master. Having a large number from which to select his assistants, ho can secure the best natural talent; and if it prove unsatisfactory he can change without giving offense. This is a very important advantage. An ingenious and able master can in a short time, by making the proper appointments, simply multiply himself in the school, a thing wholly inpossible where the assistants are less dependent.
6. Its moral effect. This is coordinate and coextensive with the intellectual efïect. Pupils are less liable to do what appears wrong in the eyes of their equals than to raise themselves to the standard of one who is far above them. Besides, the governing units are so multiplied that the evildoers lose by the weakness of smaller numbers.
7. It is more economical. By the monitorial system it is possible to carry on a school of several hundred children by the employment of one inaster. This necessity led to the establishment of Lancaster's celebrated school at Borongh Road. By a «iminution of expense, such as is possible with the monitorial system, it places the means of an education within the reach of all.
Some of the objections which may be used against the system are
1. The simultaneous working of many recitations in the same room is attended with more or less noise and confusion. The extent of this objection will depenu largely on the master, but it must be admitted that with the best management the order will fall far below tlie modern normal-school standard. But while this featuro must stand as a disadvantage, it is not withont its compensating advantages. It woulil at least cultivate the habit of conver-ing in sublued tones. The tendency of the unculturel is to talk in a high koy, and when animated to approach in boisteronsness tlie tones of a town crier or an auctioneer. It might do something toward the amelioration of that oratorical buncombe which large-chested pedagognes sometimes inflict upon their charges; while the unavoidable confusion arising from many working within hearing distance is somewlat disturbing, it carries with it the constant reininder of the rights of others.
2. Much of the pupil's time in the school is spent in contact with immature minds. It is certainly true that while there are advantages to be derived from the freedom of children teaching one another, it is not on the whole to be counted equal in value to an equal amount of timo spent with a full-grown and sympathetic teacher. It should be remembered, however, in weighing this objection, that the same amount of time is seldom realized even in schools which are not overcrowded, and that the teachers, as we find them, are not always full-grown and are not invariably sympathetic. Ideal conditions, even with teachers enough to supply all the classes, are seldom found.
3. The time occupied by pupils when teaching is lost to their studies. This objection is entirely invalid, for, as has been shown, the exercise in teaching-in the habits of thought and clearer understanding which it inculcates—more than compensates for any supposed loss of time from the lessons.
4. The monitorial system lessens the number of professional teachers needed, ind would therefore diminish the number of persons who gain a livelihood by this
While this is not the most ostensible, it is nevertheless the most formidable objection to the establishment of schools on the monitor al plan. Any argument which lessens an individual's chances for employment will not weigh heavily with him. It was this objection, though not outspoken, which rang the knell to mutual instruction in Boston and other American cities. This is strictly a class objection. It weighs not against the system as such, but against the probability of its successful establishment.
5. It would be difficult to finil masters with the requisite ability to carry on the monitorial system. It is evident that the management of a monitorial school requires unusual ability. The master must possess the qualities of generalship com bined with great teaching power and unbounded sympathy. Without such a mastir a monitorial school could not carry on its face even the semblance of success. In schools conducted on the usual plan, where the teacher does all the work, defee 8 may be covered by superficial show. But this would be impossible on the mutual plan.
As to the number of teachers in this country possessing the requisite characteristics, it would be difficult to furnish any estimate; but I am quite certain that there wouid be many, were the conditions favorable for their development, if there were a positive demand for such talent.
The considerations which bring us to the answer of the main question in the subject of this paper have now been briefly and imperfectly pointed out. What is there left in the monitorial or mutual system for the schools of the South?
From the foregoing analysis of the subject we are forced to the following conditional answer: If the schools of the children of the South are supplied with all the modern means of obtaining an education; if they have sanitary school buildings, equipped with apparatus to accommodate all the pupils who ought to attend the school; if these buildings are supplied with first-class teachers with first-class salaries, then any argument that could be urged in favor of the monitorial schools would be futile. But if, on the contrary, there exists to-day in the South a large nunber of children who, for lack of these provisions, are not being educateil, and if for these children monitorial masters could be obtained, then there is certainly something in the monitorial system for the children of the South.
AT WHAT AGE DO PUPILS WITHDRAW FROM THE
By Prof. C. M. WOODWARD, Washington University, St. Louis.
1. Before attempting to answer this question, I desire to call attention to the obvious importance of a correct answer. The best planned course of study takes into consideration both the probable duration of a school course and the age of the pupils. The direct bearing of this question is seen in the fact that an estimated average length of the period of pupilage is frequently made the basis of arguments for or against some proposed modification of the course of study, or some other detail of school management.
2. I use the word "withdraw” in a somewhat restricted sense, and as properly excluding the effect of mortality among school children; that is to say, I exclude from the number of those who can with propriety be said to “ withdraw from school,” those whose school course is cut short by death. Fortunately, this allowance is small, but it is not on that account to be ignored. The propriety of omitting from my calculations those who die can not be seriously questioned. The practical inquiry is: At what age do pupils leave school to enter upon the active duties of life, or to enter private schools ?
3. The data for my calculations are the reports of the superintendents of the public schools of St. Louis, Chicago, and Boston. In these reports the ages of all the children enrolled are recorded either at the beginning, or in the middle of the school year, and the number for each year of age is given without any regard to tho grading of thoso pupils. For example, we have the number that are between 7 and 8 years old, and the number between 8 and 9, the number between 9 and 10, and
These numbers are given in every annual report, and I have taken them from the aunual reports of twelve or thirteen consecutive years. I am bound to assume that these reports are accurate, although they exhibit certain anomalous results. By grouping these reports as exhibited in Tables I, II, and III, and then considering the figures in any vertical column, I am able to follow the same group of children through their course in the public schools. I have assumed that no pupils withdraw before the age of 8 years. By following down any vertical column we can see how the numbers increase or diminish from the combined effect of immigration, emigration, death, and withdrawals from school, till the class disappears altogether at the age of 20.
4. To extend my investigations over as much ground as possible I have entered on Tables I, II, III sufficient data to enable me to make three independent calculations from each table. I have named the columns A, B, C in each case, so that in all I have applied my analysis to nine sets of pupils—three in each city. I will add that Ilimited my study to the cities St. Louis, Chicago, and Boston for the reason that all the other large cities failed to furnish me with the requisite data.
Read before the Academy of Science of St. Louis, April 20, 1896. Published in the Transactions of the Academy, Vol. VII, No. 8; issued May 21, 1896. ED 95 -37*
5. It is a source of regret that tho data furnished by the three cities are not uniform in character. In the Boston schools the reports give the number “16 years old,” “17 years old,” “18 years old," “19 years old and over.” In the Chicago reports all pupils “17 years old and over” are lumped together. In the St. Louis reports all pupils “16 years old and over" are lumped together. It has been necessary to distribute the pupils thus lumped together, according to their ages, as accurately as possible.
It was useless to refer to the unpublished records in St. Louis and Chicago for the exact details of such distribution, as they could give no additional information. In this emergency I adopted the following method, based upon an examination of the distribution in the Boston schools and of the ratio which the 16-year-old pupils bore to those “17 and over” in the city of Chicago. I will not give the details of my investigation, but will plainly state that I assumed in the case of St. Louis that 52 per eent of those who were reported to me as “16 years old and over” were 16 years old; 30 per cent were 17 years old; 13 per cent were 18 years old; 5 per cent were “19 years old and over.” This distribution is made for each of the numbers at the bottoms of several columus in Tablo I.
In the case of the Chicago schools I assumed that 63 per cent of those who were enrolled as "17 years old and over” were 17 years old; 27 per cent were 18 years old; 10 per cent were “19 years old and over.” This, I may say in parenthesis, corre. sponds to the distribution in the St. Louis schools for those three years. This method of distribution is applied to the last numbers in several columns in Tablo II. The fact that nearly all of theso tables show the withdrawal of tho 20-year-old pupils in the years 1895–96, and even later, was an inevitable consequence, but the results are not on that account to be called in question. All my results are based upon averages, and are tio consequence of laws which vary very slightly from year to year in any given city.
6. Other data essential to my calculation are: First, the rate at which the population is increasing on account of the excess of the number of births over the nuinber of deaths. Secondly, the rato at which the population is increasing, or diminishing, from all causes, whether by accession of new territory, the moving in or the moving out of children, or from births or deaths. The internal growth (by which I mean that arising from the excess of births over deaths) I calculate from data furnished by the city officials. Tho growth from excess of immigration over emigration and death, added to the growth from tho accession of new territory (as in the case of Chicago in the year 1889) I call tho "external growth.” The total growth is, of course, tho sum of the “internal" and "external" growths. I may here remark
the growth in school population showu by the enrollment in the public schools may differ from that shown by a general census. There may be a general movement toward private schools, or from private schools. When a pupil leaves a public school and enters a private one, he practically “emigrates;" when he enters the public schools in one of the higher grades, lie practically “immigrates."
7. The rate of internal growth. -As the number of children of school age in a city bears a very nearly fixed ratio to the total population, the increase in the nuunber of school children from year to year is the same as the rate at which the total population increases. This is true of both tho “external” and the “internal” growth. Now the internal growth of a city is exactly measured by the increase of birtlis over deaths. Hence I calculate the rate from the official reports of births and deaths. All cities give accurate reports of deaths; tho roports of births are incomplete. In Boston they are more nearly complete than in Chicago, and in Chicago they appear to bo better than in St. Louis. In Boston, as would be expected, the internal growth is least, viz, 7-1000, or 0.7 per cent. In St. Louis it is, as nearly as I can learn, 16-1000, or 1.6 per cent. In Chicago it is greatest, viz, 20-1000, or 2 per cent. Whilo these ratos are not uniform they aro approximately so. In fact these results are averages of several years. In a former discussion of this problem in May, 1879, I did not distinguish the two kinds of growth, but allowed for the death rate of school children directly.