Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 50.djvu/288

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274
POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

of which discuss Pestalozzi's theories, and in his book, whose title is translated as Pestalozzi's Idea of an A B C of Sense-Perception investigated and scientifically carried out as a Cycle of Preliminary Exercise in the Apperception of Forms. In one of the essays he sets forth the insufficiency of empiricism in pedagogy, and draws an instructive parallel between tact and character; in another he insists that success in moral as well as in intellectual education depends on the proper psychologic grading of the training conferred. In still another he advocates many-sidedness in schools while at the same time showing the impossibility of satisfying all the "faddists," and follows this by demanding as much free time for the pupil as can be secured by economy of the working hours. His conception of pedagogy as a whole is laid down in the essay On the Æsthetic Presentation of the Universe as the Chief Office of Education. As to what constitutes presentation of the universe, his own words are "experience, human converse, and instruction taken all together." Conceding that the object of learning is doing, we must know what is right in order to do what is right, and besides this there must be the desire to do right. Knowledge and sympathy, then, are the two ends of the Herbartian pedagogy. In his discussion and extension of Pestalozzi's A B C of Sense-Perception, Herbart affirms that the cultivation of sense-perception falls within the sphere of mathematics, and that mathematical exercises afford the best means of holding the attention of the pupil. In discussing the exposition of mathematics for educative purposes, he declares that nothing seems to lie so nearly at the center of mathematics as trigonometry. Angles, then, should be the first subject for mathematical exercises. A section of seventy-seven pages is devoted to a plan of progressive exercises on triangles, or trigonometry. In a concluding chapter the value of a knowledge of triangles in the study of geography is pointed out, and the transition from the triangular form to the variety of forms in Nature and art is committed to the drawing-master. Wherever in the volume criticisms and expositions of Pestalozzi's work appear, it will be seen that Herbart does not seek to supplant Pestalozzi, but rather to supplement him. In the opinion of the translator, the American school system has had the benefit of Pestalozzianism, and is now ready for the further advance to be had from Herbartianism — in fact, has already entered upon this advance, although, he says, many teachers are guided by Herbart's ideas who never heard of him.

 


GENERAL NOTICES.

The rapid march of civilization during the past fifty years has left behind many of the old economic and political ideas. The new crop which has sprung up is not, as was perhaps to be expected, of uniform goodness; and many of them, born of demagogy and ignorance, are positively bad. Ill-considered legislation and mistaken notions of trade and finance have brought about conditions entailing much hardship on the poorer classes; and popular discontent, true to its paternal-government fetich, and constantly stimulated by that persevering animal, the social agitator, is loudly clamoring for "new laws." The most striking political fact during this period has been the growth of the democratic idea, and it is not perhaps surprising that this should be blamed for much of the difficulty. Mr. Lecky's book. Democracy and Liberty[1] is a study of the growth of democratic tendencies, the effect which this growth has had on the treatment of the various economic and political questions, its dangers, ad-


  1. Democracy and Liberty. By William Edward Hartpole Lecky. New York and London: Longmans, Green & Co. 2 vols., 12mo. Price, $5.