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losophy, for example, is not required by Committees and school laws, in order to teach primary and grammar schools. And yet, if the brief views of teaching we have given are near the truth, how unfit is any one to teach even such school, who is ignorant of the powers of the mind and the laws of its action. As unfit, in truth, as he to build a temple, who is ignorant of the first rudiments of architecture.
Highly useful, also, to the teacher, is some knowledge of the classical languages and literature. Our own vernacular, as all know, is largely indebted to those wonderful languages; and whoever would understand the full power of those words we have thus borrowed, must learn them in their birth-place and among their kindred. And as to studying those old philosophers, poets, moralists and historians through translations, it is, for the most part, like looking at the finest landscape in the dim twilight, so that he was not very far from the truth who said there really never were but two translations — those of Enoch and Elijah. Every student, moreover, knows how thoroughly and extensively classical allusions are woven into the very texture of the finest English literature. We may now regret this, perhaps, but it will make the fact no otherwise than it is. The great poem of the language is literally full of allusions to the old histories and mythologies. Hence the value of some attainments in this direction to every teacher. And then there is a knowledge of history, far more extended than the school books give, always useful to the instructor. For he is especially concerned to know the great science of man; and this must be studied mainly in language and history. These studies, most appropriately termed the Humanities in the older schools, while they are useful to all, are, on many accounts, especially advantageous in the business of teaching. In fine, that bond of brotherhood, so aptly termed by Cicero, quoddam cummune vinculum, which runs through and binds together all the various branches of science, makes them mutually illustrate each other; so that he who undertakes to teach any one of them will find his capability to do so increased, almost in exact proportion to the extent of his knowledge among the rest. Pushing his researches thus into one and another of the departments of knowledge, the teacher will accomplish two most important results. He will discharge a debt which he owes his noble calling, and cultivate himself as a man. He will thus escape that narrowness of thought and view which so often characterizes the pedantic schoolmaster, and which satirists have so often used to the discredit of his profession, and will elevate himself and honor his calling. . We are not unaware that we may be met here with the difficulty that the time allotted to many teachers, for their own cultivation
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in reading and study, is small. It may be said that the greater portion of each day must be given to the school, and that the remainder is needed for physical exercise and social intercourse. We admit the difficulty to some extent; still, judging from what has been done, we are convinced that a proper and systematic arrangement, in regard to time, will give considerable opportunity for so desirable an object. Instances are not wanting of teachers of the very highest usefulness, making large literary attainments. Difficult languages have been learned and abstruse sciences acquired. We have in our mind at this moment a distinguished professor who, years ago, while engaged six hours each day in teaching boys, began the study of Hebrew, and read the Old Testament through several times in that language. Honored female teachers, too, some of whose names are familiar to us as household words, might be named, who have cultivated most assiduously their own minds while actively engaged in the duties of their chosen employment. Almost all of us know the great acquisitions of Dr. Arnold, who, while engaged many hours every day in teaching, found leisure time in which, both as student and author, he gained high and worthy distinction in the republic of letters. Such examples show us what may be done by a careful economy of time and rigid adherence to system. They show us, too, that the business of instruction does not necessarily cramp the mental energies, nor prevent their growth; and that while one is a teacher, he may also become a man of taste and letters. In fact, we think it both the duty and the privilege of every teacher to be such ; and unless we greatly mistake, it will be found true on careful examination, that those teachers who are doing the most for their own mental improvement, are, as a general rule, the most useful to their pupils.
That moral culture, also, is essential to every teacher, hardly needs an argument. The matter is so self-evident as to require little or no illustration. In our own State, where from the very beginning the cultivation of the heart in all schools has been supposed, as a matter of course, to take precedence of every other; and where the school laws not only recognize religion as the highest and noblest possession possible to the mind, but also enjoin it upon the teacher to inculcate piety and Christian morals, love to God, and love to man, — here, we say, it is too obvious almost for remark that the teacher should possess high moral and religious principle. “ The business of a schoolmaster," said Dr. Arnold, “no less than that of a parish minister, is the cure of souls.” This may be stating the matter strongly. But true it is, that he must have clean hands and a pure heart, who aspires to this sacred calling. And this moral element should never be suffered to lose anything of its vitality or force. It should receive the most assiduous cultivation. There should
be in the educator a life and a growth of all good affections. To all who fall short of this, and bring strange fire to this consecrated altar, the words of the Sybil to the companions of Æneas are a fitting admonition, Procul, 0, procul este, profani.
We have briefly seen what teaching is, and what it requires. It is surely matter of pleasant reflection that teachers in our vidst are coming every year better to understand the true character of the r calling, and the relations they sustain to it. This state of things gives promise of a time not distant, when their ranks shall be filled with highly cultivated men and women, and the name of teacher shall be suggestive only of taste, refinement and all good culture. Every teacher is interested in such a result. Let each do his part, and the work will speedily be accomplished.
THE RELATIONS OF TEACHER AND PUPIL.
An important means of promoting the usefulness of common schools is diffusion of a correct knowledge and sense of the relations of teacher and pupil. From the want of just and steady principles respecting these relations, the benefit of schools is often much abridged. Difficulties not unfrequently arise in school districts, and in schools themselves, from a want of definite views on the part of parents and teachers respecting the legal rights, powers, and duties of the latter. Knowledge of the extent and limitation of his authority is hid from his eyes. Access to it is exceedingly difficult. It is not open to him in the statute book, to which his approach would be comparatively easy. It lies in fragments scattered up and down in a wilderness of judicial decisions spread through different States, for though the decisions of courts in other States are not of themselves valid here, there is a wise respect paid to them in our own courts, and a cautious hesitation to come into conflict with them. They have the authority of revered wisdom if not of positive law. The Committee, too, are sometimes embarrassed in the discharge of their duty. They find it extremely difficult to ascertain the limits of either the teacher's authority or their own. They cannot always tell whether they are over or within the line of their duty when the intervention of their authority is called for by the earnest complaint of parents and by the insubordination of individual or confederate scholars. The inconvenience of this vagueness is more extensively felt than complained of. Perhaps the authority of the teacher is too general in its nature to be confined within bounds that shall exactly comprehend the various contingencies that may happen. If we should venture to say that the occasion for the use of authority must determine its limits, there might still be a wide diversity of opinion as to what should constitute an occasion for its use; and if all should agree as to the call for its exercise, they might differ widely as to the measure and the mode of it. As there is great need of discretion in the teacher, there is also much need that discretion be allowed to him. His is an approximation to parental government, and, so far as the one approaches the other, so far should a similar discretion be conceded. Regarding then the teacher as, to a considerable extent and for the time being, in the place of the parent, we think that, as in the one case, so in the other, the law will not interfere with the exercise of authority, except where the bounds of reason are clearly transgressed, and the exercise of it works palpable injury to the subject of it, and tends thereby to make inroads on the social welfare. In doubtful cases public justice will lean to the teacher rather than to the pupil, as it presumes the discretion of the parent till the proof plainly forbids such presumption.
Unless we widely err, the due authority of teachers has, in many instances, been gradually frittered away, and the art of coaxing has been required instead of discreet government. In schools of from forty to a hundred scholars, where the number is nearly equalled by the variety, a morbid sentiment relies for subordination on the power of persuasion alone. Those who are governed nowhere else, and nowhere else persuaded, are expected to be held under a salutary restraint by the gentle sway of inviting motives. If we may suppose cases where this lenient power is strong enough to curb the wayward and subdue the refractory, we think it must be in cases where rare skill is applied to select specimens of human nature. We urge nothing against the power of persuasion within its reasonable limits, and we could wish that these limits were much wider than they are, as they doubtless would be with improved domestic education. Early and steady respect to authority at home, prepares the way for easy government in school, and whilst it is a perpetual blessing to the child, it is a present comfort to the parent and a service done to the public. “Not till an even-handed authority creates the power of persuasion at home, may we expect its triumph abroad. Whatever value, then, we put upon its gentle influence, we think that, at least in schools, it is not good for it to be alone. Law, not a name, but a power, must have a known existence, and if this knowledge cannot be communicated by its letter, it should be acquired by a sense of its wholesome penalties. There are those so headstrong from long indulgence
and from their habits of early domination, that to bring them to their duty in school, and to keep them from marring their own and others' good, by the gentle power of motives, would be as unreasonable an expectation as that of subduing the wild colt of the prairie without a thong or a bridle. To say that such should at once be turned out of school, is to say that they shall not have the very benefit which all need, and they more than others, the benefit of a well-governed school, to whose government their submission might be a salutary novelty. To expel a pupil from school should be done only by a cautious decision and as an ultimate resort. To inflict upon him this disgrace, and to deprive him of the advantages of education is, in some sense, to punish the community. Such a result may sometimes be unavoidable, but in most cases it may be shunned by the prevalence of a quick and strong sense, within the District, of the importance of a firm and well-sustained government in the school, and by leaving mainly to the discretion of him, who is held responsible for the success of the school he teaches, to find where persuasion can, and coercion must, do its work.
We are unwilling to dismiss this part of our subject, without pressing further the importance of a correct general sentiment respecting schools, both public and private, and of every grade. We think that much of the inefficiency of schools is occasioned by an unintentional and indirect interference of parents with the appropriate authority and influence of the teacher. It is an interference that works no less effectually because its operation is indiscreet and unsuspected. We refer to a home-bred influence that springs up by the fireside and around the table. It drops from the parent's lips on the heart of his child, to be carried into the gatherings of children in the neighborhood, and thence, with accumulated power into the school, there to injure, if not to frustrate, the best endeavors of otherwise competent and useful teachers. It takes the place of a salutary influence that might easily be exerted by the judicious and decided coöperation of parents while their children are under the domestic roof. The indulgence of parental fondness humors the waywardness of the child, lends a willing and partial ear to his unfounded complaint against the teacher, entertains unjust suspicions of the latter's intellectual attainments, and discretion in government. Instead of placing the full weight of parental authority in the hands of the teacher, it takes away from those hands much of the authority which the deliberate and settled wisdom of the State has placed in them. We therefore respectfully, but with an earnest voice, call upon parents, by their tender and sacred regard to the best interests of their children, and by their enlightened respect to the general good, to refrain