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organs, but will be satisfied only with a sound and vigorous physical organism, and a healthful environment. Individual and social health will be its aim. Language will spring from the needs of children in the verbal and written expression of their various activities.
Literature, as a spiritual and cultural force, must always occupy a distinct place, and no hand activity can ever be found to take its place, or play the noble and elevating part which it is its peculiar glory to play.
More careful and more scientific care will be given to defective, delinquent and backward children, and they will receive special consideration from those who have made the education and training of this type of children their particular study. In the good time coming these less fortunate ones will have special schools, or rooms, with special teachers, and a special curriculum. We shall come to do this because we shall realize that it is to the advantage of society, both from an economic and humanitarian point of view, to make such provision as will enable these atypical children to become self-supporting ; to be pro-social and productive rather than anti-social and unproductive. We shall realize that it is cheaper, as well as wiser, to prevent rather than to cure.
It seems to the writer, also, that a group-elective system will extend its way downward into the upper grammar grades; that for those who are forced to enter early into some bread-winning pursuit, the opportunity will be given, after completing the rudiments of a general education, to enter immediately into a school where direct vocational training, combined with essential academic instruction, will be offered. Not all boys and girls need or desire the upper-grammar-grade course as it is at present generally organized; for others it is well adapted to their future course. Differentiation, according to need, should consequently mark the curriculum at about the beginning of the seventh grade.
Social serviceableness and the needs of the child will become more and more the criteria for judging the worth of any particular subject, and the amount of time and attention it should receive.
OF MORAL EDUCATION
The problem of moral education is perhaps more difficult to solve than either of the others, and, in consequence, it is more hazardous to forecast its future. That there is a crying need for a more effective moral training is hardly to be doubted. Just how this moral training is to be effected is, however, so unsettled a problem that one is quite perplexed as to just what form the solution will take.
There are so many divided opinions as to the best method of training the morals of children. One school of thinkers is content to leave it as it is, a by-product of the physical and mental training. Another school would have religious instruction as a part of the regular curriculum. Another school would bar religious instruction, but would have moral instruction, divorced from religious sanction. Recently it has been proposed that the church collaborate with the school in providing the needed moral and religious training. According to this plan, the school will give up to the church one half day a week, at which time the children in any particular school will be sent to some church which the parents shall designate, there to receive instruction in religion and morals at the hands of the clergyman. Those parents who do not wish their children to receive such instruction, are not, of course, required to send them. Such children may remain at school and engage in school pursuits.
This plan seems to offer a fairly reasonable solution of the difficulty, and it is not impossible that it will at least be placed on trial. Perhaps we can hope for nothing better until the question of the relation of morals to religion, or religion to morals, is scientifically and finally settled. And that time may never come !
If we were all agreed that religion is an absolute essential to a moral life, we could very quickly settle the question of moral education. Or, if we were all agreed that morality did not require the religious sanction, we could then, too, quickly agree on a scheme of moral education. But as it is, we are hopelessly at sea, and for fear that our children may become moral by the wrong method, we prefer that they be unmoral, or even immoral.
Social efficiency means moral worth as well as physical strength and intellectual acumen. Indeed, of the three, it is far the more vital to the welfare of the state and of society. Social service is above all else moral, not only negatively moral but positively moral. And we shall never attain the ideal of social education until we provide as adequately for effective moral training as for mental and physical. How that is to be accomplished is one of the most serious problems of the educational future.
In conclusion it may be said that by no means all the possibilities of the education of to-morrow have been forecasted. Many of the things referred to in this article are already actualities; others are already in the vestibule, and will be with us presently. Some are farther distant, and it may be a year, a decade, even more, before we shall find them realized. But, they are all coming!
Great mass of shaggy rock
With here and there
A jewel rare,
How Far Shall the Elective Privilege be
CHARLES O. DENNY, DRAKE UNIVERSITY, DES MOINES, IOWA
HE subject of electives, in its different phases, is
one of the most vital issues before educators at the present time. According to Dean Wright, of Yale, the growth of the idea is faintly traceable for a century. As an active issue, however, it dates back to the seventies, when a few prominent institutions made it the dominant principle
in the construction of their curricula, while within the past decade the principle has received the unqualified endorsement of educators, and in different forms and degrees has found its way into practically all schools and colleges of any prominence in every part of the country. The movement has now reached the stage where the discussion is on the question of limitations. Thoughtful people everywhere are realizing the need of some consensus of action which shall guard against the evils of absolutely desultory courses, and at the same time give all possible elasticity consistent with sound scholarship.
It is only to be expected that such a movement in the direction of freedom should become a stampede, and break over all barriers. Conditions in our new country are particularly favor. able to such a consequence. The development of our political institutions has been characterized by an effort to break away completely from the conservatism of the old world. Reveling in this new-found freedom, and breaking so entirely with the accumulated experience of preceding generations, we have suffered evils to spring up from which our body politic is suffering, and a proper readjustment is engaging the most serious thought of our statesmen. In such movements toward freedom, the inevitable tendency is not to stop and question the wisdom of this or that restraint that convention of the past has thrown about us, but to throw off all. Indeed, a point is reached where the mere fact that an institution bears the marks of age
is sufficient ground for its rejection, and the substitution of the new and untried.
Our American institutions are based upon the theory that every man is a king. This is very well, but there is one drawback. A great many of these monarchs have not had the training in king-craft necessary to make them wise rulers; hence, the need of convention, of the united wisdom and experience of competent persons to formulate a constitution that shall guard the rights and interests of even the least favored individual against misrule.
These considerations will help us to approach a study of the conditions with respect to freedom in election. The movement has passed through a period of the widest expansion in the past dozen years. Not only has every college faculty availed itself of the privilege of working out its peculiar ideal as to a course of study, but each local community and high school principal as well; nor have the school director and taxpayer failed to exercise a potent influence in prescribing the intellectual pabulum that should be administered to the youth of the land. Some of these doctors have been experienced, competent and wise. It will hardly be disputed that some of them have been otherwise. Certainly this is freedom run riot, and the resulting chaos cannot but be viewed as an evil, calling for the most careful diagnosis and administration of remedies.
Other countries are studying and adopting educational reform measures, but the conditions are different. In Germany the Realgymnasien meet the new demands incident to the expansion of learning. But the course of study is not, as here, thrown open to the experimentation of every tyro who is ambitious to distinguish himself by his innovations, and who has perhaps himself never had the advantages of either college or pedagogical training. Instead, a body of educational experts, headed by the Minister of Education, prepares the program with the utmost care for the nine-year course corresponding to our high school and college.
Of course, in this country no such authoritative dictum is possible. If the question of creating such a tribunal were