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The above picture should be placed where the children who are to write can see it. The pupile should be requested to write an accurate description. Accuracy
should be emphasized. There is sufficient in this picture for a composition of one hundred words for a child of ten. An art critic might write a book about it. The teacher
who sends us by May 1, 1898, the best composition written by a pupil on the above subject will be sent free a picture of Lincolu for the school room.

HARR WAGNER, Editor WESTERN Journal of EDUCATION, 723 Market St., S. F.

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to the educational advancement of mankind.”

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The Value of The great ridicule of the boy who seriously recited Debate;

The Saturday open sessions of the Department School “The Boy Stood on the Burning Deck” and in the of Pedagogy of the University of California are Oratory the slurs cast upon the boy declaimer and on the

School of great interest. Professor Elmer E. Brown teacher who incited the child to high ambition, have resulted in has the faculty of having topics discussed that are both of human dispensing with Friday afternoon exercises in many schools. and of educational interest. On a recent Saturday Professor Heaton Oratory has had its place in history, it will have its place in the recommended debates in the higher grammer grades. “A child,” future. It is more natural than reading. “Why is it,” says he said, "should have something to say and be able to say it Sam Slick, “that if you read a book to a man, you set him to Debating gives practice in speaking and practice in compositionsleep? Just because its a book, and the language ain't common. It is best to begin by having the debaters write out their papers Why is it, if you talk to him, he will sit up all night with you? and then read them. Afterward the pupils may be allowed to Just because it is talk-the language of nature.” Talking one day speak from notes. of a certain play, Johnson said : “ It has not wit enough to keep "The habit of arbitrarily choosing sides is, I believe, a perit sweet :" then, after a pause, “It has not vitality enough to nicious one. Teach the children honesty; never choose sides for preserve it from putrefaction.” This last was his written style ; the pupils, but let them speak as they wish. Assign sides at first, the former, his spoken style, which is by far the better. One of but as the pupils study the question, if they chavge their minds, the most valuable talks the writer has ever heard at an institute let them change sides, and even if there should b: three on one was the plea of T. H. Kirk, for the school oratory of Friday after- side to one on the other it is better than to inculcate dishonesty noons. In the stirring events of the future, the boy of today will in the children's minds. Not only should the language of the need the individual expression of the orator. And he will make debater be criticised, but he should be held down strictly to facts, history and a place in the hearts of his countrymen as did such and not be allowed to make wild and unauthorized statements men as Chatham and Burke, Grattan and O'Connell, Mirabeau that are so common in many debating societies." and Gambetta, Patrick Henry and Samuel Adams, Clay and Web

* * ster, Lincoln and Garfield. The noble sentiments they expressed, The school teacher as well as the preacher should always be and the heroic stand they took on momentous occasions, have as near possible an example of scholarship, patriotism, manners, won for them imperishable renown ; and the record of the words and all the other ethical qualities that are required to be taught. they spoke on these occasions has fascinated, and will continue to The following story from the Boston Transcript will illustrate the fascinate, all noble minds for ages to come. Clay spoke to the point: very point of the necessity of the time; Webster expressed In a school in Boston uot far above the primary grade, the thoughts and principles that are good for all time. The one teacher was one day reading a story the subject of which was looked to the immediate necessities or exigencies of the occasion; borrowing. She supplemented the reading with some remarks of the other regarded them from a larger and more comprehensive her own, which she closed with this parting admonition: point of view. Consequently Webster is quoted ten times for "Above all things, children, when you have occasion to borClay's one time : and yet Clay was far niore ardently loved and row, never forget to return the borrowed article. Do not put the esteemed than Webster, for the former was a man of uncommonly person who was kind enough to accomodate you to the trouble of amiable and magnetic character. Clay was a self-made man ;

sending for it.” Webster, a man of classic culture.

"While she was still speakļng, a knock was heard at the door. *

“Come in,” said the teacher, as soon as she had finished her The Biennial The law that calls together the Superintendents of sentence. A pupil from another department entered, and stood

Convention all the counties is a good one. The practical results waiting. however, the past four years have not yet materialized for the "Well, what is it, please?” said the teacher. reason that the recommendations proposed have not become laws. “Miss Blank says,” the visitor called out, in a voice loud The work of the present session, therefore, will adopt the best of enough to be heard all over the room, “will you be kind enough the two previous sessions and go to the legislature with the results to send back her blotting pad which you borrowed the other day?' of six years' deliberations. The school trustees and teachers are

* interested in this session. The convention should include not only Teachers'

Superintendent A. M. Phalin of Contra Costa the superintendent, but a school trustee and a teacher from each Meetings County has originated a new plan of teachers' county. Trustees and teachers should at this time either write to meetings. He invites in March of each year all the teachers to meet Supt. Black or to the county superintendent for suggestions on together and discuss promotions, questions for examinations, the changes in the school law, and to note where improvements may course of study, the good of the schools, the advancement of the be made. State Supt, Black, in his address before the pedagogical pupils. The teachers respond to his invitation and the meetings department of the State University on Monday, March 20th, gave have been of great benefit. It is claimed by many teachers that in a concise form the essential facts in regard to the school law of the day thus spent is more profitable than the week of the county California. One of the defects which he noticed was the lack of institute. The discussions are less formal, the questions more system in the grading of schools, and he will bring the matter practical, and the results immediate.

practical, and the results immediate. Mr Phalin is an experibefore the Biennial Convention so that tle law may be amended, enced teacher, a man who has devoted forty years of his life in and primary and grammar schools be uniform thruout the State. the class of schools that he now supervises. As Superintendent of *

Contra Costa schools he has made a record for sound views and F. Marion Crawford, the novelist, in his lecture, emphasized practical school work. the fact that this age has produced great characters; that the per

* sonality of men stand out in history as in the time of the Cæsars, S. T. Gillian, in the Western Teacher, has given place to and gave as examples Gladstone, Lincoln, Leo XIII and Bis

caustic criticism on the inspirational institute. marck. Charles Sumner's advice is good to give your boys and

* * girls: “Have an ambition to be remembered, not as a great lawyer, doctor, merchant, scientist, manufacturer, or scholar, but as a

Henry Sabin, who made a national reputation as Supt. of

Schools of Iowa, has started a teachers' agency. great man, erery inch a king.”

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What Was Tt ?

Guess what he had in his pocket.
Marbles and tops and worn-out toys,
Such as always belong to boys,
An old jew's-harp and a rubber ball ?

Not at all.
What did he have in his pocket ?
A soap-bubble pipe and a rusty screw,
A piece of watch-key broken in two,
A fish-hook in a tangle of string ?

No such thing.
What did he have in his pocket ?
Gingerbread crumbs, a whistle he'd made.
Buttons, a knife with a broken blade,
A nail or two and a piece of gum ?

Neither one. What did he have in his pocket ? Before he knew, it slyly crept Under the treasures carefully kept, And away they all of them quickly stole. 'Twas a hole.

- Sel.


BY ALICE WELLINGTON ROLLINS "Come and see the flag, mamma, here in the lake!

Red, white and blue-the stars and stripes and all,”

I bend to see the bright reflection fall Where the clear waves the mirrored picture take. "Of course it's not a real flag down there, thru,"

My little son explains with careful sense

Of truth exact, then adds with tone intense, “But somewhere there must be a flag: you know, Or else this wouldn't be there." Then he lifts

With intuition quick bis eager eyes

To where the real flag floats in the summer skies,
While on the lake its mirrored semblance drifts.
So when philosophers with subtle art,

Debate, deny, demand “Why is it so?”

I answer with my child's "Somewhere, you know, Must be the truth reflected in my heart."

-"Little Page Fern."

A song for the teacher and pupils to sing as a greeting:

Good morning to all;
Good morning, dear children;
Good morning to all.
'Tis love brings us here;
Good morning, dear children,
'Tis love brings us here.
Thru all the long day,
At work or at play,
Oh, let us remember,
'Tis love brings us here.

Playing Keeps. This story may illustrate a moral in view of the controversy at Niles, Cal.

It was in the early spring, and every boy was supplied with marbles. For some reason, boys become wild over marbles only in spring-time. It was so with John Dove. He had over thirty marbles in his pocket one day in April. Ten days later he had none.

"Please buy me more marbles," he said to his father.

"More marbles !” exclaimed his father. “I thought you had a pocketful of them a few days ago; what has become of them?

“I lost every one of them," answered John.

"Hunt for them, then. If I should buy as many more you would lose them," was his father's reply, not knowing what John meant by "lost.”

“I don't mean that I lost them in that way,” added John. "I lost them playing keep."

"Playing keep! What is that?' asked Mr. Dove.

"Well, you know how boys play marbles, papa. That is the way we play, only the boy who wins takes all the marbles, and the boy who gets beat loses his. I lost every one of mine in that way.”

"You surprise me, John, I never thought my boy would gamble with marbles." Mr. Dove said this with much feeling, for he meant what he said.

"Why, papa, it is not gambling to play marbles. I would not gamble for anything."

John meant what he said just as much as his father did. He was a good boy, and did not stop to think that "playing keep'' was gambling

"Lock here, my son," continued Mr. Dove. "Suppose that you had a pocket full of cents instead of marbles, and you put up ten of them in play, and the boy who beat got them; is not that just what gamblers do ?"

John looked up with surprise, it was a new idea to him: but he said nothing because he was thinking. His father added:

"See here, my dear boy, to gamble is not what you gain or lose; it is the act of putting up what you gain or lose. You can gamble with apples, nuts or sticks of candy. You do just what gamblers do when you stake marbles or nuts only they use money instead of these. Do you see it now, John ?"

“Yes, father, I see it now. I never thought of it before. I will not play "keep" any more if you will bay more marbles for


Deseription of the “Best Teacher" by pupils.
She could stand some sun.
She had no pets.
The children feel as if she was one of them.

The principal reason I liked her for was because she liked me and showed it once in a while.

She always wanted me to be thoughtful.
Her actions helped me to do better.

If you did not get your lessons, she was so sorry that it made you ashamed.

She took a great deal of interest in us.
Put us on our honor.
Her manner seemed to give me an inspiration to work.
She never punished the pupils because she didn't feel good.
Never flew off the handle.

Does not scold us one tive, and then be awful good for a while.

Always meant what she said.
Always thought before she spoke.
Always got our attention.

She don't feel satisfied when her pupils don't have a good lesson

She was interested in her pupils' habits and reading.
By making things pleasant, so I felt like working.

The very idea of the power and right of the people to estab lish government presupposes the duty of every individual to obey the established government.- Washington,

In a free and republican government, you cannot restrain the voice of the multitude. Every man will speak as he thinks-or, more properly, without thinking--and consequently will judge of effects without attending to their causes. - Washington.



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heralds of the infinite and proclaim your messages of promise." How emphatically the beauty of the world in which we live is born in upon us, during this spring season when Dame Nature has newly colored all her various creations; when the air is fresh and clear, the sky is true and blue, and the grass is tender and new.

One has but to come in contact with the country, to feel this freshness, to see this beauty; and to partake of and be at-one-ment with the prevailing joyousness of the season.

What a source of satisfaction it is then to live--especially when in full realization of all there is, appreciating and enjoying every part of it. The tolerance of existence with its questioning motive takes wings at the sight of baby blossoms that so appealingly lift their. gentle heads above the unfolding blades of grass, and tell us again the ever told story of eternal life.

All the various manifestations of nature, are to the thoughtful, but the characters by which she expresses herself. As we are wont to say of an art product--there are two things to be considered, the conception and the artistic treatment; so in nature's creations, the thought to be conveyed, the story to be told, the lesson to be taught, is the primary motive, while the rendering--the things employed for this expression—the beautiful forms and the charming combinations of color, are but the means by which she allures and entices us to a serious study of her works.

And what are the various stories that different flowers tell us ? Nature's language is not always clear. She is expert in concealing and reveals only to those who seek diligently and earnestly.

What are the different sensations that each one inspires in us ? For example, the golden-rod or daisy, the poppy or baby-blue eye, the wild-rose or forget-me-not, the columbine or gentian, or the lilly-of-the-valley or the pansy? Aud tho we think so lovingly of all of thein, the sentiments which the mere mention of their names awakens in us, are as different as the flowers themselves.

Flowers are interesting from several points of view,--from the beauty of their shapes and colors, from the sweetness of their odors, from the spiritual thought they unfold, and from their historical association.

What important part did the lotus--that goddess of plenty whose coming prophesied that none should hunger--play in old Egypt !

How its deification and general use as a symbolical decorative motive have nfluenced the art of all succeeding generations !

Then in comparison with this ancient lily of the rivers, we may revert to the more modern, our own lily of the fields, the iris, whose masses of dark foliage, at this season, stand in strong relief against young grass, and whose graceful, shapely heads tend toward the sunlight proclaiming their messages of promise to mankind.

Iris is a word of Greek origin, meaning rainbow, and according to the prevailing custom of the ancients to personify the various expressions of nature, the rainbow represented a goddess whose mission was to bring messages from the gods to mortals. We are told that she vied with Mercury in the rapidity of her flight, and that no one would have known she had passed but for the brilliant trail she left behind her in the sky.

"Like fiery clouds, that flush with ruddy glare,

Or Iris, gliding thru the purple air;
When loosely girt her dazziing mantle flows,

And 'gainst the sun in arching colors glows." It is interesting to see how different people in different times have given almost the same interpretation to this heavenly sign. As in Greek mythology it represented a celestial messenger, so in Norse mythology it is described as a bridge by which all heroes ascended into heaven, and in German folk-lore as the road by which the righteous are led tv paradise. In the book of Genesis we find it spoken of as a bow of promise. "I do set my bow in the clouds and it sball be a token of covenant between me and the earth.”

The name iris was doubtless given to the flower not only because of its radiant color, but because of it aspiring tendency, in which it must have conveyed the corresponding thought of the rainbow.

One of the most interesting historical associations connected with this flower is that of the fleur-de-lis, which by some writers is thought to be a conventionalization of the iris, tho this is a disputed point. Some claim that it is derived from the lance-head, while

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