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gation it was learned that the student's mother had done the entire work herself and had even advised the student to hand in the theme as his own work. I was once obliged to expel a student who admitted that he had for a long period been stealing money and property from his fellow students. His mother declared the action of the college unjust on the ground that boys are immature and irresponsible, and should not be dealt with too severely. These tendencies, which have their origin in the home, are not always corrected in the preparatory school, and unless they are eliminated by the college we shall fail to perform one of the most important tasks in the education of young men. (It makes little difference how extensive and thorough a man's classroom training has been or what scholastic honors he has won if he has not learned how to face the problems of life squarely and honestly.
The time has come when it looks as if it were the duty of the colleges located in large and fashionable cities to do something to check the evil influences exerted over our students by certain phases of social
life. (The excessive use of champagne, late hours, and the vulgarity of dress, bearing and conversation, which are features of some of our so-called best social functions are doing much to wreck the lives of some of our best boys on whom the open influences for evil in the city would have little effect. ) Par ents very frequently request that special supervision be exercised over their sons who are being separated for the first time from parental guidance, and colleges owe it to these parents to do all in their power to protect these sons from such influences as tend to drag them down.
There is plainly a demand for a much broader training than the term education ordinarily implies, a training which means character building as well as mind building, a training which means preparation for efficient workmanship. Such training calls for much instruction which cannot be given through the textbook, lecture or laboratory. There are many channels, however, through which this great work may be done. It will not be accomplished by the enactment and enforcement of severe rule and regulation. True character is not produced by compulsion. Nor will it be accomplished by the guiding influence and condoning attitude of paternalism. Hothouse moral fibre will not stand up under the
stress of great temptation. There are no courses of study yet devised nor are there likely to be, which in themselves are going to build character in our voung men. Any plan which might be devised for this purpose would fail absolutely the moment the object of the plan was discovered. Character building in the young man is accomplished by indirect and subtle influences. The nature of the work which a man takes up in college, the methods by which the work is done, and the standards of scholarship which are set up and maintained all play their part, but the great contributions toward character building are made by those teachers who through the influence of their own lives and characters, who by their personal touch and magnetism are able to mould the life of the young man.
Such teachers are rare and are not always the men that colleges are searching for. Colleges are too frequently looking for specialists, men who through investigation or publication have won for themselves wide reputation, men who have become so completely absorbed in their special line of work that they have lost touch with student life and are absolutely ignorant of the temper, tendency and aspiration
of young men. Such teachers are consequently unable to contribute much towards a student's education save that which may lie within their narrow provinces.
We must not underestimate the value of the specialist - These men render most valuable service to their respective institutions. We cannot get on without them. But they are not the men who are likely to make large contributions to the general education of the average undergraduate. The officer of instruction who contributes most to the education of youth is the man who shows Kimself an active part of the life of the day, who is in touch and sympathy with every movement intended for the good and advancement of his fellow men. JToo many professors live in their laboratories and libraries. They know and care too little about outside matters which do not bear directly upon their line of work. They do not always show the snap and earnestness in their college work. which the up-to-date business man shows in his work, and therefore fail to stimulate their students,
Professors must not give the students to understand that they have severed earthly connections and are no longer a part of kúmanity. Not long ago a professor in one of our large colleges
was on his way from his home to the lecture room when he suddenly realized that he had left his watch upon the dresser in his room. He hastily took the watch from his pocket to see if he had time to go back to the house. Having satisfied himself on this point he returned and searched the room in vain for the watch. He then became anxious about reaching the lecture room in time to meet his class. He consulted his watch again, hastened to the college and gave his lecture, frequently referring to his watch without the slightest knowledge that he had it,
Another professor called one day at the general delivery of the post office for his mail. When asked by the clerk "What name ?” the professor hesitated for a few moments and left in great embarrassment without his mail. On the way home he met an old friend who in the morning salutation called the professor by name and thus supplied the much-needed word. The professor thanked his friend heartily for the service rendered, and at once returned to the post office and secured his mail without difficulty. These are not stories,—they are facts, and indicate how far away from human affairs we may drift.
We do not forget the great work which the colleges have done and are doing in the way of education nor the great contributions to learning which have been made by college professors. When we consider the shamefully small salaries which professors receive for services rendered, services second in value to none in the realm of human activity, we may be thankful that we have any acceptable institutions of learning.
But we cannot overlook our shortcomings or fail to observe how much more the college can do than she is doing now toward that broader education of young men which means the building of character as well as the building of intellect.
The educational problems which face us are becoming more and more numerous and perplexing and are demanding more and more of our time and energy, but when we consider the nature of the youthful material with which we as educators are today called upon to deal and the character of the tasks and the responsibilities which these young men are to face in after life, there can be little doubt about the important position which character building should occupy in our plan of education
Character—The Secondary School; Its
RESENT DAY discussions of school men make it
clear that the character element in school training is the all important element. On every side is the demand that the school be made adequate to meet this largest requirement. Young people in the colleges are lacking in power to rightly use un
restricted liberty. Scholastic failures are due to TUULIINNOSTUNIE character failures. Business men join the college men in demanding that the schools shall send out those who have had more than an intellectual or technical training. Distinctions between secular education and
religious education are passing. The function of all teaching is lifted into the religious realm. The teacher is the prophet of truth who transmits truth through the refining fire of his own personality.
The development of character is the supreme opportunity of the secondary school.
Undoubtedly it is needless to say that the boys and girls of the high school age, are in the very formative and impressionable years. They are more plastic, more responsive and more_susceptible to all influences than later when habits become_fixed. They are imaginative; they are dreamers, hero-worshippers, lovers. They are coming to self-discovery. Their ambitions are shaping. Their ideals are becoming constant. It is in this period they are made or marred, intellectually, morally and religiously.
In these years of rapid physical growth, when new forces are operative and new powers are asserting themselves, certain elemental qualities of character are pronounced. The strong sense of honor, of justice, of fairness; ideas of true sportsmanship; championship of the weak; loyalty to tradition, to custom, to class; readiness to shield or fight for the other fellow; absolute obedience to certain codes; now excessive independence and self-assertion and now strange respect for authority and law; the conceit of wisdom; intense personal and
class rivalry; zeal for organization and leadership; easy enthusiasm and exhuberance of spirit—these all have values in morals and character.
The field is prepared by all physical and mental development for the growing of honor, of integrity, of faith, of unselfishness, of service.
Nowhere else will be found such a challenge to wisdom, to faith, to personality. No other period makes such a demand for or appeal to the true teacher. President Hyde has said: “The high school teacher who knows his students individually and leads them to the recognition of their deeper selves, is almost omnipotent for determination of both career and character."
The teaching force of our secondary schools is composed of men and women of very high standards and qualifications. They have a true conception of the vital nature of education. They are rendering a service of inestimable value to the community and to the state. Yet, in the culture of this great field of character, the public school is at greatest disadvantage.
(1) The public school in town and city draws from a heterogenious people. Its problems are at once difficult because of the complexity of its environment. A high school principal in a prosperous New England town told me recently, that in the classes of his school twenty-two nationalities were represented. Racial traditions and ideals immediately affect the work of the school, scholastically, and even more seriously in the matter of ethics.
(2) The wise division of church and state has very generally made religious and even ethical instruction impossible. Efforts to teach and develop morality without religion have not been highly successful.
(3) The influence of the school atmosphere is not constant. The school hours are few and short. The teacher is before his class for a period or two and all is over. Schools are over crowded. Classes are too large. Little attention can be given to individual pupils. Opportunities of comradeship, of friendship, of inspiration are few. Outside school influences are the stronger.
(4) The home is usually beneath the standards of the school. Parents too often shirk their responsibilities. They too easily throw the burdens they should carry over upon the school. They