The Parents' Review
A Monthly Magazine of Home-Training and Culture
"Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life."
Notes and Queries.
A. T. D. presents her compliments to the editor, and would be greatly obliged if she or any of the readers of the Parents' Review, could tell her of any really good weekly magazine suitable for boys of twelve years old and upwards, and dealing chiefly with Natural History or very simple natural science--keeping science always as the "handmaid of religion." A. T. D. cannot help thinking that some such magazine would be of very great value, especially as forming a relief to the endless tales of adventure and romance which boys fond of reading are so apt to devour at that age, especially if some simple papers on practical handicrafts, or things boys could do or make with their hands, were included in it. Address answers to "A. T. D.," Hatton Castle, Turriff, N.B.
The teaching of geography. The following hints, from an article by the late Dr. Quick, which appeared in an old number (January 1st, 1886) of the Journal of Education should be useful to parents who have more opportunity than teachers for this kind of work:--
"Let me then give my advice for what it is worth, in as few words as possible. I would say to the teacher:--1st. Sell for waste paper all the Geographies you and your pupils may chance to have. 2nd. Don't think of 'getting up' or of making your pupils 'get up' anything, but aim at establishing points of interest for yourself, and then see if you cannot get others to share your interest. 3rd. To begin with, connect everything with persons. Take up, e.g., some amusing narrative of travel--Lord Durferin's 'Letters from High Latitudes,' say, or, Anthony Trollope's 'West Indies,' or Curzon's 'Monastaries in the Levant.' Read it for yourself, carefully following the traveller on the map. Then tell your pupils about the traveller, keeping to the most striking parts of the narrative, and here and there giving the writer's own words from the book. 4th. Let your pupils not only follow the traveller in this atlas, but also make a sketch map in which his course is marked. The drawing of sketch maps, especially when colour is introduced by means of chalk pencils, such as Hardmuth's (the best I know), is an art that boys take to very kindly; and if the admirable system recommended by Mr. P. E. Swinstead (in his lecture 'On Memory Map Drawing,' in November Educational Times, or his book, 'How to Draw a Map from Memory,' Simpkin and Co.) be adopted, they will soon acquire the power of keeping in the mind's eye the relative positions of the countries and towns they are hearing about. 5th. Carefully avoid all "useful information;" just give your pupils what you have found interesting, and what they find interesting. When a name has become interesting to them, information will gradually grow to it without effort of yours or theirs. A name that has become interesting to us in boyhood remains interesting for life, and in the recent fall-out between Spain and Germany I have felt as if I were personally concerned in consequence of my having read, over forty years ago, about the Wreck of the Antelope, and the story of Captain Wilson and his people on the Felew Islands."
Hampstead and St. John's Wood Branch.--A meeting was held on Thursday, 18th June, at 7, College Villas, Finchley Road (by kind permission of the Misses Fuller), when a paper was read on "Kinder-garten Training," followed by discussion. The chair was taken by the Rev. R. Duckworth, D.D., Canon of Westminster, who in his closing remarks said that this Society, he thought, was doing necessary work in educating parents, and enabling them more rightly to direct the training of their children. As this was the closing meeting of the session it may be of interest to review the work done by this branch during the session.
After the usual summer recess the work of the second session was opened by a meeting at the South Hampstead High School in October, when an address was delivered by the Rev. E. A. Abbott, D.D., on "The Co-operation of Parents and Teachers." At this meeting, over which Professor Hales presided, some 300 people were present, and much interest in the subject was aroused. On December 5 a paper was read by Mrs. Sophie Bryant, D.L.C., on "How to Dress Our Girls," after which many questions were asked, which Mrs. Bryant answered at length. The chairman, Mr. Henry Holiday, then spoke on the artistic side of the question.
The first meeting of the present year was held on January 27, when a most interesting and instructive paper was read by Mrs. Ormiston Chant on "The Books our Children Like, and Why?" This lecture will shortly be published in pamphlet form. On February 26 Miss Helen Webb, M.B., read a paper on "The Formation of Habit," Dr. William Neale presiding. This important lecture was followed by a large accession of new members. On March 19 the subject of "Heredity," briefly alluded to in Mrs. De Morgan's paper, was treated by Mr. A. H. Tubby, M.B.M.S. London, of Guy's Hospital, Dr. Eady being in the chair. This lecture, which was published in the Parents' Review for June, was followed by a special meeting for men only, when Mr. Tubby warned fathers more fully of the dangers to which their sons were exposed. The next monthly meeting was held on April 16, when Mr. Mark Wilks, jun., read a paper on the "Effects of the Examination System," Dr. A. Schofield taking the chair. On May 21, by kind permission of the Rev. F. W. Tremlett, D.C.L., a large meeting was held in the beautiful lecture hall of St. Peter's, Belsize Park, when a discussion took place on "Rewards and Punishments," under the presidency of Mr. E. Kell Blyth. Papers were read by Miss Louise Drewery, and Mr. E. B. Cumberland, B.A., B.Sc. London, Head Master of the William Ellis Endowed School, Haverstock Hill, and so much interest was excited in this subject that a supplementary meeting was held in the afternoon a week later, at which ladies who were unable or unwilling to speak at the more public gathering availed themselves of the opportunity of bringing their own difficulties before the other members present, or of imparting the results of their own experience. The result of this session, closed by the exhibition and explanation of Kindergarten methods of teaching reported above, has been to stimulate parents and teachers to a higher sense of their joint responsibility in the training of children, and to afford a means by which the problems that arise may be discussed in common, and mutual aid and encouragement given in this most important of all works.
Particulars of this Society may be obtained from the Hon. Secretaries, or from the Hon. Librarian, Hr. Henry Perrin, 67, Broadhurst Gardens, South Hampstead.
1. Mrs. William S. Hall offers a Prize of One Guinea for a pretty little air to the words of "Mary, Mary, quite contrary."
2. Mrs. Duff offers a Prize of One Guinea fo rthe best list of books for boys and girls of from twelve to fifteen, including fictions, but not consisting of fiction solely. The books should be not only profitable, but inviting, such as young people will read with pleasure. It is not desirable that all the works should be selected from what are commonly called "Books for Boys" and "Books for Girls."
Award.-- Mrs. Gordon divides her prize of One Guinea between two equally good papers on "The Management of a Nursery," (a) by Mrs. Thomas, (b) by La Madre.
Typed by Blossom Barden, March 2013