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in schools and education; (b) pupils were stimulated to better scholarship; (c) studies were reviewed when necessary. A writer in the Illinois Teacher stated the current conception thus: “But public examinations have great advantage attending them. They awaken a more general interest in the community at large on the subject of schools and education. They furnish an occasion for many good things to be said in the presence of parent and pupil. They stimulate the scholar to greater exertion and more accurate scholarship. Furthermore, these public examinations have generally been made the occasion to review the studies pursued by the pupils during the year. Nothing can be more useful than this. Reviewing studies carefully is the best way to make them thoroughly understood. It is true this can be done without any such public examination; but it will be more likely to be done, and better done, with it." 161
The public examination was an occasion, moreover, for an address by the principal to the parents and the pupils on the worth of education. Occasionally, the virtues of learning were stated in very modern terms:
1. Education had a commercial value: “If there were no other considerations to prompt you to a faithful improvement of your privileges and time, the results in your favor, in dollars and cents, should be considered sufficient to spring and keep alive all of your energies, to prepare, for your entrance upon the business transactions of life, by obtaining the necessary literary qualifications. "62
2. Mental satisfaction justified the efforts required to obtain an education: "Mental satisfaction alone may be considered infinitely more forcible, and contains enough in it to warrant all your efforts. The mind in an entire uncultivated state can have but few enjoyments, but when enlightened, vast fields of pleasure open before it. Truth is its proper element, and as the various order of beings derive most of enjoyment in the element suited to their natures, so the mind has most of enjoyment when in the possession or pursuits of truth."
“To separate truth and error—to detect the rock on which your bark of fortune might split-to be satisfied that your business, when transacted, is done correctly—to know what man is, and what he has done on earth-to become acquainted with the physical structure of the globe on which he dwells—the different orders of being which live and move through its expanse of waters, or inhabit appropriate divisions on its surface, and to discover the harmony of all nature's operations, as well as her wonderful power to accomplish the beneficient purposes of the Great Creator, in contributing to the preservation and happiness of all animal existence—are some of the few purposes of mental enjoy
a Illinois Teacher, v. 1, p. 83. 62 Trotter, W. D., Prin. Salem Acad. in San. Jr., 1858.
3. The foundation of a republican government rested upon education, but enough has been said already on that subject.
4. Social relationships required educated leaders: “But in the cultivation of the mind, materials are gathered from social intercourse with our fellow creatures; and as society is delightful and necessary to us all, there is an obligation resting upon every youth, apart from numerous inducements to carry with him into the world a large stock of information as he can command *. Young Gentlemen! Who of you will step forward and add your name to the list of benefactors of the human race? Do you emulate the fame of the truly great? This is the way. Do you aspire to leave a trace upon the earth, which the touch of time will not mar, an expanding field for effort, not for ourselves alone, but to bring good mentally, socially, politically and religiously to others."
This chapter has shown that the standards for admission to academies in Illinois were singly and individually determined; that tuition fees were charged in all conceivable ways by subjects, by departments, by curricula, and by fixed sums for all subjects; that other items of cost were included in pupil's expenses, chief of which were those for living accommodations; that tuition charges, coupled with inaccessibility, made the academy practically a select institution open only to those who could afford it.
Moreover, the length of the school year, the division of the year, and the length of the school day were in no sense
Trotter, W. D., Prin. Salem Acad. in San Jr., 1858.
uniform throughout the state. However, nearly every academy did retain the Latin grammar school curriculum as a center around which other subjects were added to prepare students for the useful and professional positions in life. Besides the ancient languages, philosophy and aritbmetic, modern languages, more mathematical subjects, some social sciences, natural and physical sciences, cultural and artistic subjects, and manual labor were introduced into the academic program. Formal examinations were conducted by a committee of the prominent men of the community, usually ministers, at the close of each term in order to pass judgment upon the efficiency of instruction. Once in a while, the mode of teaching was such as to indicate to the pupil some of the social values of education. The utilitarian aspect of the academy is well explained by the philosophy underlying the manual labor feature.
The Manual Labor Aspect. To, the professions, the Latin grammar school and the early academy had ministered, but the great mass of the common children in frontier and semi frontier districts were unable to rise from their common station in life if education were the prerequisite. Although the academy may be said to have represented liberalism, and although it was a frontier institution, it was essentially, highly selective. The middle and upper classes, only, could take advantage of academic education. To remedy the situation, the idea arose of establishing manual labor academies in strategic positions where pupils could earn a part of their expenses, where the common child could have the privilege of going to school, where habits of industry, morality and independence would be taught, and where a literary education, comparable to that given in the usual academy, could be obtained.
Generally speaking, the manual labor movement began in the United States about 1825, chiefly through the European influence of the students of Fellenberg in Switzerland. Connecticut organized manual labor schools in 1819, Maine in 1821, Massachusetts in 1824, New York in 1827, and New Jersey in 1830. Besides, an attempt was made to establish that feature in the already existing literary institutions. Little success was obtained in the older, more firmly established and conservative schools. But the first seminaries and colleges were just growing up in the West where new and radical features were more likely to be adopted. Also, the West was the center from which most of the tracts and teachings of the principal leaders, Neef and Maclure were distributed. Provided with an abundance of cheap land, upon which agricultural and some mechanical pursuits could be carried on, it was very easy for all academies and colleges in the new states to incorporate that attractive and so-called democratic principle.
In the eastern states, the feature was shortlived. By 1840, practically all talk of the manual labor idea had ceased, but the West continued the plan to the close of the national period. After the ideas of Maclure and Neef had subsided, J. B. Turner, of Illinois College, where the system was in operation for a few years, somewhat changed the arguments to those that should favor institutions from the common schools through the university for the education of the laboring people. His life was spent in continual service to that ideal until congress passed the Land Grant Act for the establishment of Agriculture and Mechanical Colleges, and Illinois chartered the Industrial University. Thus, the manual labor idea in Illinois had served as a basis for the more liberal education of all the people, not only for the professions, but for all classes. The final realization of many of the aims of the original advocates of manual labor came with the introduction of manual training in the high schools, about 1877. A closer examination of the philosophy and examples of the establishment of the so-called Fellenberg movement, may not be out of place.
Fellenberg introduced and established the first system of utilitarian education in the canton of Berne, Switzerland. Experiment began with fifteen or twenty poor boys whom he taught while they worked on the farm or in the shop. The poor school was attached to a rich school, where noble youths were instructed. The latter school gave him considerable reputation and a great deal of popularity so that the number in the former was increased to about one hundred.
Joseph Neef, associated with Fellenberg and acquainted with his experiment, was induced to come to the United States, by William Maclure, who travelled in Europe studying educational movements. Neef began a school in Philadelphia, but later, about 1825, taught a school in New Harmony, Indiana, where Maclure was sending out tracts on the Pestalozzian and Fellenberg manner of instruction. The manual labor feature of that system was planned for the new country of the West.