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habits of the industrial classes, have been given, in my hearing, to attentive classes of girls. I do not propose to make any alteration of importance in the form of this paper,
English History. COMPARATIVE Results of the ExAMINATIONs in ENGLISH HISTORY
COMPARATIVE Result of the ExamINATION of the TRAINING Schools
at CHRISTMAS, 1853.
From these tables it appears that a great improvement has taken place since 1849; and that it was began immediately after, and probably in consequence of that examination. The largest proportion of satisfactory papers was in 1850 ; since then it has remained nearly stationary, not much exceeding one half of the entire number of candidat :S.
The institutions which have done best in this subject are Warrington, Whitelands, York, and Norwich. from Warrington, especially, have been favourably noticed by the examiners during the last three years. At Cheltenham and the Home and Colonial the progress is very unequal; while some students have given satisfactory proofs of a general
and accurate knowledge of history, a large proportion in both institutions have evidently neglected the subject altogether.
These results accord entirely with my own observation. It is exceedingly difficult to arrange the work of a large institution so as to give a good course of lessons on history with less than two years' training. At Cheltenham and the Home and Colonial, the average time of the candidates little exceeded one year. It ought, however, to be admitted, that every schoolmistress should be well grounded in some good text-book of English history. The Queen's scholars cannot have passed through their apprenticeship uninformed in the general facts which form part of their examination from the third year and onwards. And although it may not be practicable to go through the whole period, even in outline, all candidates ought to be prepared to answer easy questions at the end of the first year. I am further of opinion that one considerable portion of history should form the subject of series of lectures for the more advanced students. Until last year, the trainingschools came to a general understanding among themselves as to the period to be selected, but the arrangement has not been found to work well; and, after consulting all the principals, I have undertaken to adopt a different course, which, it may be hoped, will be satisfactory to them, and secure better results.
The paper should be in two parts :1. The first part in four sections, each with three questions.
All these questions should be strictly elementary, such as can be answered by any student who has read carefully the ordinary text-books used in girls' schools.
2. The second part in three or four sections.
Each section should contain four questions on one great period of English history, some of these questions with especial reference to biography.
Geography. COMPARATIVE Results of the EXAMINATIONS in GEOGRAPHY, from
1849 to 1853 inclusive.
1849 1850 1851 1852 1853
34 121 148
51 181 144 159
COMPARATIVE Results of the EXAMINATIOx, Christmas, 1853.
In these tables, the most striking fact is the extreme irregularity and uncertainty of the results, whether we consider the different years, or the different institutions.
I have frequently stated my opinion, that the subject is really taught well in most institutions. The lectures are excellent at the Home and Colonial, Whitelands, and Cheltenham; the time allowed for study is quite sufficient, the students are interested in the lessons, generally possess a fair amount of elementary knowledge on their entrance, and give better lessons in the practising schools on this than on any other subject. I believe that the unsatisfactory results are simply to be attributed to the difficulty of ascertaining their knowlege on a subject embracing so great a variety of facts.
This difficulty may be to some extent obviated by a different arrangement of the examination paper, and a clear understanding between the examiners and the institutions as to what amount of proficiency will be considered satisfactory.
Moderate, imperfect, or
Excellent, good, or fair.
1849 1850 1851 1852 1853
40 114 11 179 180
104 60 93 93 127
COMPARATIVE Results of the EXAMINATION, Christinas, 1853.
These results indicate a general improvement, but not so great as might reasonably be expected, considering the paramount importance of the subject, the ability of the lecturers, and the peculiar advantages of professional training enjoyed by the Queen's scholars, who in the last two years bore so large a proportion to the total number of candidates.
The comparative inefficiency of the instruction in some institutions as shown by the second table is attributable to causes adverted to in special reports, which have been submitted to the consideration of the respective committees of management.
In this subject I would propose in future to set two distinct sets of papers. The first paper to contain four sets of questions on methods of teaching elementary subjects, on the management of classes, on the use of apparatus, and on notes of lessons. The second paper for students of the second year on the principles of teaching ; on school organization, and on notes of lessons.
Industrial Work.—1 see no reason to propose any alteration. All students at their entrance should be able to make a shirt, and I am informed by the matrons that if they can cut one out correctly, and finish it neatly, they may be considered as sufficiently expert needlewomen.
Vocal Music.—It is a general impression that there should be a much larger proportion of elementary questions in this paper, but I have referred the subject to others more competent. to form an opinion. This remark applies also to the written questions on drawing.
Reading.—In each institution this year I have heard the students read prose and verse. I am satisfied that unless they lose their self-possession, and fail to do themselves justice, a very large proportion will obtain high marks at the next examination.
Inspectors' REPORTS on the LESSONS given, in their presence,
This table represents the judgment of ten Inspectors upon lessons averaging about twenty minutes, given in their presence by the candidates to classes of some twenty or thirty children. It would obviously be unfair to draw very stringent conclusions as to the comparative efficiency of the institutions from such data, although the results correspond to a greater extent than I should have expected with my own observations.
Professional Training.- In last year's report I entered fully upon various points connected with this special work of training institutions; viz., the thorough instruction of the students in the principles and art of teaching. The teachers of training schools, whom I consulted during this year's tour of inspection, generally concur in the following observations.
Elementary Methods.—The first, and if well understood by the teacher, the easiest work of a training school, is to make each student practically conversant with the method of teaching every subject of elementary instruction. Last year I stated what I considered to be requisite for the accomplishment of this object. I will now state what is actually done.
In most institutions a master or mistress of method has a written syllabus, containing minute directions for every detail of instruction in elementary schools. Portions of this syllabus are read in the form of lectures, with suitable comments and illustrations. They are then written out by the students, either from memory or from dictation, which, in a subject requiring so much exactness, appears to be the better system. I have this year recommended the teachers to exchange copies of the syllabus, used by them respectively. This may lead gradually to the adoption of certain complete systematic types,