Imágenes de páginas

FOR THE WEEK-DAY TEACHER. READING LESSONS IN THE LOWER CLASSES. When there is an infant-school, children ought not to be admitted to the National school who are unable to read easy monosyllables.

Children appear to learn reading most rapidly, and with least defect of pronunciation, in schools where a system is adopted similar to that which I have recommended for the Catechism.

The monitor reads one word, which is then clearly pronounced by the first child, then repeated by the whole class, and so to the end of a sentence. This should not be done more than twice or thrice; it is then better to read over the sentence, explaining it familiarly, and questioning the children. When they know the words and understand the sentenee, they may read it round the class, word by word, without the assistance of the moni tor; they may then be called upon to read the sentence separately. This cannot be done at one lesson; but where the subject is judiciously selected, it may be recurred to at intervals. Three reading lessons, each for 2 quarter of an hour, may be given in the course of the morning.

In the interim the children will be employed in writing words on slates (the words which have occurred in the reading lesson being selected in preference to any others), or in learning from dictation.

Until the children are able to read simple narratives with facility, I believe that this method, with suitable variations, will be found successful. The master, the pupil-teacher, or the most skilful monitors, will endeavour to take the explanatory part of each lesson as frequently as possible. Drawings, maps, and natural objects, will be of great use in this work.

Children of five years old and upwards should learn to read easy sentences in six months, upon the average. Some will learn in three months and some in nine; the exceptions are not numerous of those who require a longer time, with proper care.

In the classes, where easy narratives are read, it is useful to let the children write down the leading words previously from the black board, with simple explanations of the meaning. This should be done by the monitor of each class before school-hours.

The stops should be noticed in the reading, -each stop counting as a word in passing round the class.

The parables and discourses of our Saviour are often placed in the hands of children not sufficiently advanced to read or understand them.

Lessons from the Psalms, compendiums of Scriptural narratives, especially of the life of our blessed Lord, and the First, and parts of the Second, Book of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, are best adapted for children who have been one year in school, and are be. tween six and seven years old.

The defects most common in the reading of the other classes, comprising children, upon the average, from 8 to 11 or 12 years old, are indistinct and hasty reading, neg. lect of punctuation, omission of aspirates, and other vulgarities of pronunciation, and want of interest in the subject evinced by an unintelligent and monotonous repetition. These defects will, of course, be remedied only by the development of the children's intellect; but certain methods of a simple and practical character may facilitate the teacher's endeavour to overcome them.

Instead of reading to the end of each verse in the Bible, it is better to read to the end of a period; and when the teacher conducts the lesson, he should cause some of the children to read two or three sentences, or not less than half a page, taking pains to correct every fault, and to call the attention of the rest of the class to his observations. The teacher will also read the sentences himself occasionally, and not desist until the boy whom he calls out for that purpose imitate the intonation of his voice correctly.

Hasty reading may be corrected by forcing the children to pause after every word, while the rest of the class repeat it in turns. By placing two boys at some distance, and causing one without a book to repeat each word after the reader, indistinct utterance is often cured in a short time.

To keep up the attention of the class, the monitor should call upon children in different places to continue the sentence; and in general it is advisable to let two divisions read alternately.

The circulating system generally tends to give liveliness to the reading. Some masters, who object to it upon the whole, introduce it occasionally when the attention of the children seems to flag.–Mr. Cook's Report.




John v. 1-16.

1. A feast.— It is generally supposed that this was the passover. 2. Bethesda.-Or house of mercy.

Porches.- Probably built there on purpose to shelter the sick, who resorted to its healing waters.

4. At a certain season.-It pleased God at certain times to send an angel to give the water this healing power. We do not know how long this continued; but probably, like the possessions with unclean spirits, it was only about the period that our Lord was upon earth.

5. An infirmity.-A disease of some kind, which rendered him helpless.

7. I have no man.—Never thinking of any other way of being bealed, than that he was hoping for from the pool.

10. It is not lawful.—The carrying of burdens, for the purpose of work or traffic, was forbidden in the law of God. (Neh. xiii. 12–17. Jer. xvi. 21, 22, 27.) These Jews were perhaps unnecessarily scrupulous about the outward observance of the day when they objected to this man taking his bed home with him ; at any rate, he was justified in doing it, when directed by one who had made him whole.

12. What man is that ?–More anxious to enquire about the supposed faults, than the wonderful miracles.

13. Wist not.-Knew not. 14. Sin no more. Our Lord knew that his disease was the consequence of some former sins, and therefore gave him this warning.


Having come to Jerusalem to be present at one of the feasts, our Lord noticed many sick people at the pool of Bethesda; his attention was particularly drawn to one who had been afflicted for 38 years, whom he healed, and directed to carry his bed home with him : the Jews find fault with this, because it was on the Sabbathday.


I. How much concern do men show to get healing for their bodies; and how little, too often, for their souls! V. 3. (2 Kings 1, 2.)

II. How thankful may we be that it is not the first only who applies ; or at a particular time, that we may come to Christ for the pardon of our sins ! V. 4. (John vi. 37. Rev. xxii. 17.)

III. There is no sin that Christ cannot pardon. V. 4. (Is. i. 18. 1 John i. 7.)

IV. Jesus knows all the particulars about the case of each. V.6. (Heb. iv. 13. Prov. xv. 11.)

V. We must be willing to be healed to obtain the blessing V. 6. (Matt. vii. 7, 8.)

VI. Christ's way of healing is the last that man naturally thinks about. V. 7. (Is. lv. 8.)

VII. What we have found of the bitter fruits of sin, should make us dread and avoid it. V. 14. (Jer. ii. 19. Rom. vi. 20, 21.)



John v. 17-30. 17. And I work.–Our Lord here claims for himself the prerogative of working in unison with God the Father, and in the same way with him, so that he was not bound by the laws laid down for his creatures. In this sense it was clearly understood by the Jews, as we see from the following verse.

22. Hath committed.-As God, Christ acts on his own authority, being one with the Father ; but, as man, he acts under the direction of the Father, and fulfils the part assigned him, as Mediator, and Head of his church, and Judge of the world.

25. The dead.-Some have supposed that this refers to the dead who were raised to life by our Lord, or those who left their graves at his crucifixion ; but from the whole context, it seems rather to

relate to those who were dead in sin, and should be quickened by the preaching of his Gospel, to spiritual and eternal life. And when the Jews, not understanding it in this sense, expressed their surprise, he adds, that they need not be astonished, for the time was coming (he does not say here," and now is,') when he would literally raise from their graves the bodies of all who were naturally dead.

30. Of mine own self.--As separate from the Father.


Christ here declares his divine power, and his being one with the Father; while at the same time, as the Son of Man, he acts under his authority, and in accordance with his will.


I. We may sometimes find fault with others, through our own mistake alone. V. 18. (Luke vii. 39.)

II. Jesus Christ has the same power with God the Father, and is to be honoured and worshipped equally with him. V. 17, 21, 23. (John x. 30. Phil. ii. 6, 9, 10.)

III. The Blessed Persons of the Trinity are united in all their purposes and acts. V. 19, 20. (1 John v. 7. Gen. i. 26. Matt. xxvïï. 19, &c.)

IV. He that believes in Christ shall be saved. V. 24. (Acts xvi. 31.)

V. Christ has power to quicken dead souls. V. 25, 26. (Ephesians ii. 1.)

VI. He will raise the bodies of all, and call them before him to judgment. V. 28, 29. (2 Cor, v. 10. Rev. xx. 12.)


JOHN v. 31-47. 31. Is not true.—Might not be believed ; two independent witnesses were required by the Jewish law. (Deut. xix. 15. ch. viii. 13—18.)

32. Another.-John the Baptist. (John i. 7.) 33. Ye sent.-(See John i. 19—34.)

34. I receive not.--I need not man's testimony; but I refer to John the Baptist, since you were so ready at one time to listen to him. (Matt. iii. 5–7. xiv.

36. The works. His miracles-by these many were convinced. (See John iii. 2. ix. 30–33. xii. 11. &c.)

37. Borne witness.-At his baptism. (Matt. ii. 16, 17.)

« AnteriorContinuar »