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Our female teachers, too, might adopt a similar expedient in respect to the plain needlework done in their schools, of which there are, almost everywhere, so many loud and, perhaps, not unjust complaints. It may not be amiss to inquire, whether the proceedings of our Associations, if they took cognizance of such matters, might not be made known to the pupils--very few of whom have ever heard of their existence, and fewer still know at what they aim. Few children are so indifferent to the reputation of their schools, as to be unwilling to make an effort to place them in a position of eminence, if they knew how to do so, and were supplied with a worthy motive to exertion ; or, if they are so, it may be fairly questioned whether the fault be all their own. At any rate, it might be worth a trial to let them know that their performances, as a school, will be submitted to comparison at the next meeting of the Association, and he must be very much a stranger to the hearts of children, who thinks they will not feel a laudable ambition to know that their school has, at least, received " honourable mention."
Associations are of great value to educational progress, by the facilities they offer for keeping before the minds of teachers what are the most necessary objects for them to keep in view, and the most direct means of attaining them. It is obvious to every practical teacher, that there is a tendency to advance according to rule in the subjects taught, forgetting how many of the taught are falling behind through irregular attendance, and how many have missed the initiatory portion through recent admission. They do well to aim at benefiting the greater number of teachers rather than the few. There is always a large proportion who, when they have done the utmost the circumstances will allow, mourn over the little that is accomplished, and are but little able to derive aid or encouragement from the discussion of methods and subjects of instruction, which can find no entrance into their schools. The few may be edified, but the many are discouraged. It will be of real service to let them know how many there are who are similarly situated with themselves; and how much real and permanent good may result, and often has resulted, from a very limited school instruction, if that instruction has been well done. It will be a cheering and edifying thing, if the most experienced will but show how the most limited course can be most effectually accomplished, and rendered a real thing. It will endow the discouraged with new vigour, if they can show how that little, well done, is better than much, indifferently performed.
There are many things to which associated teachers may turn their attention to great advantage. Take reading, for instance. How very little of good reading do we meet with, either in time or tone, intelligence or expression! Have we fully made up our minds as to what constitutes good reading ? Have we cultivated it ourselves ? Is there any reason why teachers may not meet for the cultivation of this important art among themselves, as well as for the mutual study of Greek, or German, or mathematics ? As far as popular education benefits by our Associations, the general cultivation of really good reading among our teachers vastly outweighs the advantages resulting from their linguistic acquirements, or even their mathematical skill.
Another matter to which attention might be advantageously given is, the position of monitors, in relation both to the teachers and to the scholars. Whatever may be the inadequacy of monitorial aid, or the superiority of pupil-teacher agency, it is very clear that, to a greater or less extent, monitors are neither wholly superseded, nor likely to be, for a long time to come. It may be worth while to ascertain the number of these youths in any given Association, and to consider seriously what can be done for them, both in their schools and out of them, to cause them to feel that they are respected, that their work is appreciated, that their position is useful, honourable, and confidential, and that there are privileges as well as duties and difficulties attached to it. Take, for instance, the list of schools in and around London, as found in the Appendix to the Society's Report this year. Here are 210 schools; and if we take the average of monitors in each at eight, we have a total of 1,680 young people, in and about the metropolis alone, on whom we are constantly dependant for the working of our schools. It is, then, a question of very great importance in what way we can best attach these young people to ourselves and to their work; and that Association of Teachers will render good service to the community, which shall be happy enough to strike out some general course of action, and practically exbibit its good effects.
The great danger in all Associations is that of the individuals composing them losing their individuality, and trying to shape their modes of action to the plans approved or adopted by the leading few. This is always a serious evil; and where so much depends upon an individual, as in the case of the school teacher, the mischief is incalculable. Associations are chiefly valuable as they stimulate and assist intellectual and moral energy in the persons composing them, and so stimulate and aid that the product may still be the individual's own, and bear the impress of his personal characteristics. It is not for any plans they can exhibit, or any rules they can promulgate, that we value them, so much as for the impulse they can impart to all the best powers of the human mind and heart. It is the warmth which they can impart to the feelings, and the earnestness which they can administer to the will, that we value them most highly for. Men and women engaged in the same work, actuated by the same motives, surrounded by the same difficulties, cheered by the same hopes—little understood by spectators, but comprehending each other-cannot come into each other's society for purposes so intimately connected with their common work, without feeling that an intimate bond exists between them, subtle as the electric stream, but equally real and potent. And if there are any members of such Societies who feel this more than their fellows it is always those whose capabilities are the least conspicuous, who labour under special disadvantages, or whose scene of operation is the most obscure. These are always anxious to catch every note of encouragement, to sympathise with every case of disappointment, and to hope from the successes of others; and our Associations will be always most efficient, when, whilst its most prominent and efficient members are stimulated to nobler efforts and higher attainments, its most retiring are preserved from discouragement, and strengthened in the belief, in spite of every appearance to the contrary, that they “ shall reap in due time if they faint not.
W. R. B.
EDUCATIONAL CONFERENCE. An important conference of teachers, chiefly of British Schools, was held in the school room at Tortworth, in Gloucestershire, on the 12th of August. The Right Hon. the Earl of Ducie kindly granted the use of the room, and otherwise rendered effective aid for the occasion. It had been arranged that W. P. Price, Esq., M.P., should preside, but being unexpectedly prevented from attending, Joseph Bowstead, Esq., her Majesty's Inspector of Schools, kindly rendered that service. This conference originated among the members of the North Gloucestershire and the Bristol Public School Teachers' Association,* who had resolved on a general meeting of the two bodies at some central spot, and to invite other teachers, living within moderate distances, to join them. About 100 teachers assembled on the occasion, and with the happiest results. The following topics were spoken to, by the persons named, during the morning meeting :
“ The Educator, -his aims, and the means of attaining them,” by Mr. Williams and Mr. Moore, of Cheltenham.
“The Educational Position of England as compared with other Great Nations,”—by Mr. Norton, of Gloucester, Handel Cossham, Esq., and Mr. Turner, of Bedminster.
“The Educational Exhibition,” by Mr. Turner, of Bristol, and Mr. Cooke, of Newtown.
“ Associations of Teachers an excellent means of promoting the work of Education,'' was briefly spoken to by Mr. Baxter.
The afternoon meeting was devoted to a discussion on the subject of school books, introduced by a paper read by Mr. Gough, of Bristol. The Rev. J. Edwards, of Bristol, and Messrs. Moore, Houlston, Roomer, Norton, and Turner, took part in the discussion, which closed the proceedings of the day.
An excellent cold collation was provided, and the proceedings of the day were highly encouraging. The projectors of this conference deserve the highest thanks of all who participated in its advantages, and it is sincerely to be wished not only that such an assemblage may become an annual one in that part of the country, but that our teachers elsewhere may be stimulated to “do likewise." It was a deeplyinteresting circumstance that side by side sat men of the most opposite opinions on the question of Government aid in the work of education, with her Majesty's Inspector in the chair, all conscious of, yet candid toward, each other's views, yet all determined to turn the favourable opportunity to good account in furtherance of sound practical education.
* The rules and regulations of this Society have already appeared in our pages.
ELEMENTARY TEACHERS' ASSOCIATION. The following arrangements have been made for the meetings of this Association during the ensuing six months. The Society meets at the Girls' School Room, Harp Alley, Farringdon Street. The monthly meetings are held on the second Saturday in every month, and are open to all
teachers, whether male or female.
Sept. 9th. Analysis of Poetry, - page 10, No. 3 Book, Mr. Langton; Object Lesson, “ Feet,”
Oct. 14th. Analysis, Prose, - page 12, No. 3 Book, Mr. Parker ; Object Lesson, "Salt,” Mr. Roberts ;
Nov. 11th. Analysis, Prose-page 14, No. 3 Book, Mr. Hardy; Object Lesson, “ Combustion,”
Dec. 9th. Analysis, Poetry, -page 16, No. 3 Book, Mr. Baines; Object Lesson, “ Balloon,” Mr.
1855. Jan. 13th. Analysis, Prose,--page 20, No. 3 Book, Mr. Drew; Object Lesson, Light,”
Feb. 12th. Analysis, Poetry,--page 22, No. 3 Book, Mr. Page; Object Lesson, “Water," Mr. Ryder ;
Each teacher is expected not to occupy more than half-an-hour. There will be half-an-hour devoted to Discussion upon the Lessons, at the end of the Object Lesson, and half-an-hour at the end of the Essay:
Teachers desirous of becoming members may obtain particulars from either of the Honorary Secretaries, Messrs. Page, of Lambeth, and Roberts, of Somers Town.
BRITISH AND FOREIGN SCHOOL SOCIETY.
LEGACIES, AND NEW ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTIONS AND DONATIONS.
From June 1st, 1854, to August 31st, 1854.
£500 0 0 Don. Ann. Sub.
Don. Ann. Sub. £ s. d. £ s. d.
£ s. d. £ s. d. Arnum, W., Esq., 18, Upper
Montoya, Sacenz, and Co.,
1 10 Messrs., 3, Winchester-
5 5 0 8, Manchester-buildings..,
1 1 0
Phillips, Shakspere, Esq., 21,
Hertford-street, May Fair
1 1 0 bard-street, on account of
Puget, J. H., Esq., l'otte-
Smith, John Henry, Esq.,
0 5 0
1 0 0
Smith, Richard, Esq., 300,
5 0 0 Buxton, Charles, Esq., ditto
22 0 Swayne and Bovell, Messrs., Hart, R., Esq., Glen Avon,
5 0 0 South Africa
5 0 0
Taylor, Brothers, Messrs.,
Brick-lane, Spitalfields 5 5 0
Vaizcy, John, Esq., 2, South-
square, Gray's-inn. 5 5 0
Vaughan, Miss M., Cumberminster.
1 1 0 land-terrace, Regent's-pk. 50 0 0
Wentworth, F. V., Esq., 11,
1 1 0
Remittances from Auxiliary Societies and Corresponding Committees, 8c., from
June 1st, 1854, to August 31st, 1854.
€ S. d. Barnsley (addl.) 1 0 0 Hereford
3 11 0 Penistone..
2 2 0 Boroughbridge 1 6 0 Huddersfield
8 7 6 Reading
1 15 0 Bierley 2 20 Ipswich...... 11 16 0 Stainforth.
0 10 0 Brigg..... 1 0 0 Louth 3 7 6 Thorne
2 1 0 Brompton... 0 10 0 Luton 3 5 0 Tickhill.
0 10 0 Cambridge 11 20 Lynn..
1 ] 0 Thirsk and Sowerby. 5 126 Cheltenham 15 7 0 Malton
5 11 0 Wakefield (addl.)...... 2 2 0 Doncaster... 4 7 0 Margate 1 11 0 Whitby.
0 15 0 Gloucester 4 11 0 Nettleton 0 10 0 Worcester,
2 0 6 Grimsby 1 0 0 North Wales
7 7 10
Subscriptions and Donations will be thankfully received by SAMUEL GURNEY, EsQ, Treasurer, 65,
City of London; and Published by PARTRIDGE, OAKEY, & Co., 34, Paternoster Row, in the Parish of St.-Faith-under-St.-Paul's, in the City of London.-MONDAY, OCTOBER 2, 1854.
BRITISH AND FOREIGN SCHOOL SOCIETY.
SUMMARY OF OPERATIONS, FROM SEPT. 1, 1854, TO DEC. 1, 1854.
One hundred and forty-one students have been in training in the Normal College.
Twenty-three have received appointments to schools.
Five have withdrawn, either from illness, a desire to change their occupation, or a want of fitness for the work.
One hundred and thirteen remain in the Institution.
Eleven schools have received temporary assistance during the illness or otherwise necessary absence of their teachers.
AGENCY AND INSPECTION.
Mr. Barton has visited eleven towns and villages in Yorkshire on the business of the Society, and for the inspection of schools.
Mr. Madgin, in the West of England, has inspected schools, held conferences, and otherwise aided the cause of education in twenty-three towns and villages.
Mr. Baxter has visited and inspected sixty-six schools in and about London, and thirty-seven country schools, besides holding several public meetings and school examinations.
In North Wales, Mr. Phillips has forwarded the cause of education in forty-seven towns and villages, by inspections, conferences, and public meetings.
Mr. Roberts has rendered a similar service in South Wales, in forty towns and villages. Several important public meetings have been held by him, in conjunction with Hugh Owen, Esq., of London.
ANNUAL EXAMINATION FOR CERTIFICATES. The annual examination of teachers and students commenced on Monday, the 11th of December, in the large room of the Institution, Borough Road.
Her Majesty's Inspectors on the occasion were Joseph Bowstead and Matthew Arnold, Esqrs. 136 candidates presented themselves for examination, of whom 23 were mistresses of schools ; 25 were students in the Female department of the Training College ; 51 were masters, chiefly of country schools; and 37 were young men who had completed a year's residence in the Normal College. The examination lasted till Saturday the 16th. We hope to publish a list of the successful candidates in our next.
EDUCATION IN SOUTH WALES. On the 1st of December last, a conference was held at the Temperance Hall, Merthyr Tydfil, in order to take measures for the furtherance of education in the south of the Principality. The meeting had been convened by circular, and was attended by many ministers and laymen from the counties of Monmouth, Brecon, and Glamorgan. The Rev. David Charles, President of Trevecca College, was called to the chair at 11 o'clock, a.m.
The Chairman, after briefly explaining the objects of the conference, requested the Rev. William Roberts, of Blaina, to read the minutes of a meeting which took place at Blaina in February last. The resolutions passed on that occasion were as follow:
“ Resolved,-1. That the object of this Conference is the promotion of education in South Wales, according to the unsectarian principles of the British and Foreign School Society, with the aid of the Committee of Council on Education.
“2. That a committee be appointed, composed of gentlemen interested in education, to carry out the objects of the meeting, consisting of the following persons, with power to add to their number.
(Committees were named for the counties of Monmouth, Brecon, Glamorgan, Carmarthen, and Pembroke.]
“3. That the Rev. D. Charles be requested to act as lionorary secretary to the Committee.
“4. That the Rev. W. Roberts, agent of the British and Foreign School Society in South Wales, and Mr. E. Jones, of the British School, Blaina, be the acting secretaries.
“5. That the secretary be requested to draw up a pamphlet in the Welsh language, containing instructions for the establishment of schools, showing the advantages offered by the Government, and answering objections.
“6. That a copy of these resolutions be forwarded to the Committee of the British and Foreign School Society.
“7. That T. Brown, Esq., of Ebbw Vale, be respectfully requested to be the president of an association to be formed for the purpose of carrying out the objects of this meeting, and other gentlemen in South Wales be requested to be patrons, and to co-operate.
“8. That the next meeting be held at Merthyr Tydfil, on Tuesday, May 9th-a conference in the morning, and a public meeting in the evening."
Mr. Hugh Owen, of London, then entered very fully into the statistics of education in Wales, and made a long and animated speech, from which we extract the following remarks :
He commenced by directing attention to the necessity that existed for increased efforts to extend and improve the means of education among the working classes in Wales. He remarked that the number receiving school instruction was shown by the last census to be rather more than one in every eight of the population, taking England and Wales together; but taking Wales, with Monmouthshire, alone, the number was shown to be less than one in every eleven of the population. The population of Wales, with Monmouthshire, was, in 1851 (the date of the last census), 1,163,139; and the number attending schools of all descriptions was only 103,247;