söndag 31 januari 2010

Saturday with Gutenberg

.f you intend to start a department store, there is a book for you "How Department Stores Are Carried On" from 1901 by W. B. Phillips.
The book seems to cover everything you have to think of, from general principles, Serving Customers, Catalogues, Filing Correspondence to Paying Wages.
I have absolutely no talent for business, I'm not a bit interested in selling things — but I find this books amusing. Perhaps because it is so old and I know that I don't have to deal with it in real life.

"In the School-Room, Chapters in the Philosophy of Education" 1868 by John S. Hart.

'm sure that all of us who have been teaching, or still are, will find this book interesting.

In the first place, teaching is not simply telling. A class may be told a thing twenty times over, and yet not know it. Talking to a class is not necessarily teaching. I have known many teachers who were brimful of information, and were good talkers, and who discoursed to their classes with ready utterance a large part of the time allotted to instruction; yet an examination of their classes showed little advancement in knowledge.

What, then, is teaching?
Teaching is causing any one to know. Now no one can be made to know a thing but by the act of his own powers. His own senses, his own memory, his own powers of reason, perception, and judgment, must be exercised. The function of the teacher is to bring about this exercise of the pupil's faculties. The means to do this are infinite in variety. They should be varied according to the wants and the character of the individual to be taught. One needs to be told a thing; he learns most readily by the ear. Another needs to use his eyes; he must see a thing, either in the book, or in nature. But neither eye nor ear, nor any other sense or faculty, will avail to the acquisition of knowledge, unless the power of attention is cultivated. Attention, then, is the first act or power of the mind that must be roused. It is the very foundation of all progress in knowledge, and the means of awakening it constitute the first step in the educational art.

None of yesterday's books had interesting illustrations, so I use these lovely vignettes from "Cedar Creek, From the Shanty to the Settlement" a book by Elizabeth Hely Walshe, which I don't think I'll read.

nd finally a poem from "Riley Farm-Rhymes" by James Whitcomb Riley.


In Spring, when the green gits back in the trees,
.... And the sun comes out and STAYS,
And yer boots pulls on with a good tight squeeze,
.... And you think of yer bare-foot days;
When you ORT to work and you want to NOT,
.... And you and yer wife agrees
It's time to spade up the garden-lot,
.... When the green gits back in the trees
........ Well! work is the least o' MY idees
........ When the green, you know, gits back in the trees!

When the green gits back in the trees, and bees
.... Is a-buzzin' aroun' ag'in
In that kind of a lazy go-as-you-please
.... Old gait they bum roun' in;
When the groun's all bald whare the hay-rick stood,
.... And the crick's riz, and the breeze
Coaxes the bloom in the old dogwood,
.... And the green gits back in the trees,—
........ I like, as I say, in sich scenes as these,
....... The time when the green gits back in the trees!

When the whole tail-feathers o' Wintertime
.... Is all pulled out and gone!
And the sap it thaws and begins to climb,
.... And the swet it starts out on
A feller's forred, a-gittin' down
.... At the old spring on his knees—
I kindo' like jest a-loaferin' roun'
.... When the green gits back in the trees—
....... Jest a-potterin' roun' as I—durn—please-
....... When the green, you know, gits back in the trees!

2 kommentarer:

  1. Love the teaching quote and I'd like to read more of that book
    My Husband is a high school teacher who is totally frustrated by the amount of "teachers" who have no understanding of what to teach means.

  2. Val,
    There are far too many teachers who don't understand that teaching is an art. An art you have to work hard to be good at!