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this, without regard to the respective ages and natural positions and rights of the parties.

Few persons, probably, put it to themselves in this, or any precise form; but they practise upon principles of which the above is no unfair or exaggerated representation. This is frequently brought to our notice in the cases of children, who, often at an early age, have gained the mastery over their parents; who come to school, or not, pursue this or that branch of study or not, leave school or remain, go to college or into trade, in accordance rather with their own inclination or whim, than the wishes and plans of their parents. The parent acts upon the principle that the child is to be reasoned with upon all occasions, end the result is, though perhaps this is not always acknowledged in a direct form, that when not convinced, or willing to allow himself to be, he has his own way. The mature reason thus yields to the immature, and the parent deprives himself of the greatest parental privilege and duty, that of guiding and controlling the feeble creature committed to his charge. Here is no true homage to the office of reason. In the first place, the stronger is often made to yield to the weaker; in the second, the weaker is not true to itself, but is acted upon by every breath of desire, inclination, or animal propensity. How seldom can the full-grown man say with truth, that he habitually yields himself entirely to the promptings of his rational principle ! How unreasonable, then, to expect it of the child !

That teachers should perceive the folly of such views, is natural; they view children comparatively and with unbiassed eyes; the partiality and blindness of the parent are not their feelings. Where they have not been so far led away, by the desire of present popularity, as to fall in readily with the prejudices of those about them, they have tried to exert a wholesome influence on this subject, and temporizing parents often confess their obligations to them for doing what they cannot accomplish themselves, viz., making their children walk in the path of duty. But these ideas of discipline have prevailed sufficiently in the community, to exert a mischievous influence upon our schools, to render the lot of the faithful teacher who is uninfluenced by them, much harder and more thankless; and to destroy the usefulness of him who succumbs to them. Hence has arisen the much-vexed question of punishments as a means of compelling the wayward and idle to duty; and especially of corporal punishment, the exact difference between which and any other disagreeable infliction upon the young, it is difficult to perceive. What volumes of words have been written and spoken to bring punishment into disrepute, ascribing feelings to those who inflict and those who suffer it, which never existed but in the imaginations of these denouncers, and the fallacy of which might be shown by the fair and cool recollection of their own school-boy days. The teacher has thus been made a mark to be shot at by many, who, without an adequate knowledge of his situation when placed in charge of a school, of the discipline absolutely necessary to be maintained to keep a school in existence, of the natures and propensities of children, or, in fact, of any thing else to qualify them for the task, have undertaken to enlighten the world on the subject of education.

Time would fail, were I to undertake to touch even upon all the circumstances that affect the teacher of the present day. The important questions remain,

- What may we fairly and conscientiously undertake to do; and what may the public justly require at our hands as the result of our labors ? A fair and full understanding on these points is of great importance to both parties, as, without it, disappointment and want of harmony are likely to arise.

The Teacher, on his side, must take care not to excite too high hopes and expectations of what he can do. His power is limited; very limited. Give him an intellect of the first order, physical powers and endurance to support it, the eyes of an Argus and the hands of a Briareus, his power is still limited, and he will learn to look for but a moderate average of results from his labors in a school. Young and ardent men, embracing this business, are usually very sanguine as to what they can accomplish. The feeling is a good one, and, when tempered by experience, makes the successful teacher. He sees much done, or, at least, hears much said for the cause of education; he feels, perhaps, that his pupils enjoy many advantages which he did not possess. Perhaps he is a believer in the unlimited efficacy of some particular theory or system of teaching, or of some series of books which he has found efficacious in his own case, or in that of some special pupil, and he enters upon his work with the expectation of bringing all his school up to his standard. His imagination, too, has been fired with the exaggerated statements and highwrought language of enthusiastic lecturers and editors, as to what every district and other school ought

to be; and the possibility of rearing plentiful crops of Washingtons, and Franklins, and Bowditches, if he only proceed aright. But, so far as these extrava

, gant expectations go, he is doomed to disappointment. He finds that God's Providence sends us remarkable intellects from time to time, to carry out his views for the progress of the race; and that these owe very little to the school-master for their extraordinary powers; while all the development possible in this world, will carry the great mass of pupils to but a very moderate average of intellectual advancement. He finds, too, that the best constructed and most ingeniously simplified systems of teaching particular branches, will but very partially work; and that the application of them, in full accordance with the views and directions of their inventors, would take all his time for the instruction of that particular department of knowledge. He finds, also, that but a moderate approximation can be made, even under the most favorable circumstances, to the perfect classification of schools, as it is necessary to receive pupils at all stages of advancement and from every variety of previous instruction; while often classifying is but choosing the least of the inconveniences that present themselves; that classes must go on irrespective of individuals, who, froin various causes, such as inability, negligence, sickness or irregular attendance, are often "dragging the lengthened chain” of ignorance, the farther the class advances; that sometimes, instead of the coöperation of parents and friends, who are at least equally interested with himself in the matter, he. finds a readiness to excuse a child from necessary labor, to allow any trifle to interfere with lessons and

attendance, and sometimes, apparently, to make common cause with him to defeat the teacher's efforts.

All these obstacles, and many more, will present themselves to the teacher, as his experience increases, and will tend to moderate his enthusiasm as to what he can effect in the literary department of his school.

He will also probably find, by experience, that his moral instruction is of necessity confined to occasional hints, growing out of particular occurrences and to the general influence of his discipline; that, as it is only one of many influences acting upon the imperfect character of childhood, no certain result can be looked for from it, without the coöperation of domestic and other influences over which he has no control; and that there exists a certain conventional and traditionary morality of the school-room, which to a certain degree supersedes the purer requisitions of Christian morality, and forms an atmosphere of public opinion and a standard of character, almost impossible to dissipate or subvert, unless principles of a higher nature have been early and deeply laid.

Such being the results, as I believe, of experience in a real school, a very different thing, be it remembered, from a merely possible or imaginary school, we have the proper data on which to ground an answer to the question just now propounded, as to what the teacher can do in regard to any school or scholars that he may be about to take charge of. Feeling that his power is essentially limited, he will represent it to be so. He will promise no specific results or set amount of progress in a definite time and under all circumstances; but will only, like the scientific physician, undertake to help nature by all the appliances

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