Popular Science Monthly/Volume 46/November 1894/Manual Training I
PRINCIPAL OF THE NORTHEAST MANUAL TRAINING SCHOOL, PHILADELPHIA.
THE editor of The Popular Science Monthly has always taken a warm interest in the question of manual training. On two occasions he has been kind enough to allow me to speak to his readers in the columns of the magazine. I have much valued these opportunities. The first article appeared in August, 1889, and was entitled The Spirit of Manual Training. It dealt with the general aspect of the subject, and more especially emphasized the ethical significance of well-performed action. The second article appeared in May, 1894, under the title of Cause and Effect in Education. It contained no direct reference to manual training. It was intended, however, to serve as an introduction to the two articles which the editor now asks me to write. It did this by illustrating the main proposition upon which manual training rests its educational claim, the very simple and undeniable proposition that we can only attain a rational education by setting in operation adequate causes. I am referring to these previous articles in order to avoid repetition. In the present paper it is my purpose to speak of the outward aspect of manual training, and in the succeeding paper, of its inner content.
It must be borne in mind at the very outset that manual training is not a complete and separate system of education, excluding other branches of human culture, and only administered during a definite period of boyhood. On the contrary, it is but one branch out of the many which make up the sum of education, and as such is applicable in every grade of school life. One must dismiss the idea that a manual training school is a "peculiar" institution which has parted company with the older avenues of culture, and has struck out in a new and somewhat erratic path of its own. It is quite possible that its early advocates held some such conception of its mission, but the view is certainly not shared by those who are trying to give manual training daily expression in the schools. A more modest conception prevails. Manual training is held to be a part of culture, not culture itself.
Curiously, manual training effected its entrance into the curriculum at both ends of the educational sequence—in the kindergarten and in the scientific departments of the universities. From the bottom and from the top it has been steadily pushing its way toward the center, until now the two frontiers are within plain sight of each other. The manual activities of the kindergarten, the weaving, modeling, and building, are succeeded by the sloyd of the primary school, while the technical work of the universities and scientific schools is now being preceded by the systematic wood and metal work of the manual-training high schools. The unoccupied territory lies between, in the elementary schools. It is, however, not entirely unoccupied. Already the simpler forms of wood work and clay modeling are being introduced into many of these schools, and the frontiers are disappearing.
This dual start is responsible for what would otherwise be a curious conflict of motif in the development of the manual training idea. The kindergarten has always in view the thought of the child. Its activities have but one purpose, and that is development. The things produced have in themselves no value whatever. The whole operation is a process. Its importance is subjective. One might, I think, sum up the ideal of the kindergarten in saying that its end is the cultivation of perception, and its method is the self-activity of the child.
It is far otherwise in the technical schools of the universities. Seldom have processes called educational been so oblivious of the material upon which they work. Men are taught to analyze iron and copper ores, because these analyses are needed in the industrial world; to survey fields and farms, because of the social necessity of emphasizing the difference between meum and tuum; to file and fit and turn, because only by such operations can machines be built; and to do a hundred other things whose end is objective. The work has regard only to itself. It is needed in the great outer world of enterprise and action. The worker is a part of the productive mechanism, and is now a means. Observe the contrast. In the kindergarten, the work was the means and the worker the end.
We thus find, at the two extremes of the educational line, parallel activities but opposite motives. So long as the frontier of the intermediate schools remained between the two, there was little conflict of ideals. Different sets of people were interested in each, and, as the interests were in both cases large, they prevented a too critical examination of the distant activity to which they were opposed. Thus became possible the spectacle of a father sacrificing himself to some industrial end, working beyond the point of fatigue, exceeding the bounds of sanity, while his children in the kindergarten were engaged in activities which were purely, though unconsciously, self-regarding; and no one appears to have found the spectacle so inconsistent as to be distressing.
But when manual training moved from its extreme positions and progressed along the line toward the center, it carried its motives with it—the educational motive upward, the technical motive downward. In the secondary schools the two have met and are in daily conflict. Sometimes this conflict of ideals is between different schools of presumably the same grade and intent. In one, manual training is followed as an educational process, and in the other as an industrial end. The outer world—if it be discriminating enough to really get at what the schools are about—sees two institutions of similar name and curriculum, and interprets the school according to the one it happens to visit. Very frequently the conflict is a civil war, having its seat in one and the same school, a part of the faculty working in one spirit and a part in the other. But most perplexing of all, one sees the conflict going on even in the same individual, the educational idea uppermost at one moment, and the love of technical perfection dominant at another. There are few teachers of manual training who do not at some time find themselves dangling between these two poles of thought.
Now I am restating these opposing motives in the development of the manual training idea at so much length and with so much emphasis because this is to-day the vital issue in the whole movement. And the restatement is the more necessary because the direct work of teaching manual training must rest for some time to come in the hands of men drawn from the artisan class rather than from the cultured classes, and is, therefore, in the greater danger of being regarded merely as the work of teaching a handicraft.
Moreover, this is only another aspect of the same issue which is now at stake in the universities. One can not move in the inner circles of collegiate life and thought without being constantly aware of the fact that the old breach between the classical party, the upholders of the humanities, and the newer faction representing the scientific and technical training, has never been closed. However pronounced the amenities of daily intercourse, the antagonism, at best, is only latent. When the wisdom and graciousness of humanity were all stored up in Latin and Greek, it was a prerequisite of culture to know these languages. It was early discovered that the act of acquisition was itself a most helpful intellectual gymnastic. The study thus came to have a dual value, as an end in itself, and as of high disciplinary power. This is undeniable. It is quite as true to-day as it was a hundred years ago when the classics were synonymous with culture. But the problem is now complicated by the necessary introduction of other considerations. The humane spirit of Greece is reflected more or less perfectly in the renascent spirit of modern times. The best of Greece and Rome is a heritage already ours. Further, those who would drink at the direct literary fountains can do so on the average far more perfectly in the admirable translations now available than in any translations they could make for themselves. So far as the content of this literature is concerned, the human spirit may be as wise and as gracious without the study of the dead languages, as with it. The issue really hangs, then, upon the value of the discipline. This, too, is as great as ever, but it must be remembered that a discipline may be good—may, indeed, be the best at any one time—and yet with the progress of events become relatively poor. This, it seems to me, is the case with the classics. We are working for intellectual power. There was a time when the classics offered the best means of attaining this end. But such studies appeal only to a limited set of faculties. The best discipline is undeniably one which appeals to the fullest set of faculties, for this will mean the largest amount of brain development, and consequently the greatest intellectual power.
The objection which the classicists hold against our modern science culture as a substitute for the ancient languages is, I take it, that we have made this culture an end in itself, and have valued the facts above their effect upon the human spirit. So far as this objection is true it is a valid one. But the same spirit which once made the study of Latin and Greek the acknowledged means of culture is even more applicable in science. Like the content of Latin and Greek in the middle ages, the content of science at the present time is something greatly to be desired in and for itself as adding immeasurably to the wisdom and graciousness of life; while the process of gaining this content—a process which employs every sense and every faculty, and from its necessities evolves new senses and new faculties—represents a discipline of the highest possible value.
The classicists have preserved the spirit of true culture—a profound appreciation of the subjective value of learning.
The scientists have reached the right method—the employment and development of all the senses and faculties.
The proper reconciliation between these contending friends of culture is very simple. It consists in cherishing the spirit of the one and adopting the method of the other.
Now I believe that a similar reconciliation is possible as regards manual training. The great thing is the human spirit, the sum of human faculty. The end of education is the unfolding and perfecting of the spirit. All other ends are secondary to this. It is the great thing in the kindergarten, in the elementary schools, in the high schools, in the universities. It is also the great thing, and we are much too apt to forget this, in the conduct of mature life. We are working for power. We are after a certain quality in organized matter, a complexity of structure and a sensitiveness in the gray and white of the brain. We can accomplish this purpose, we can gain this power, we can evolve this quality of complexity and sensitiveness only by very definite reactions upon the organism. The self-activity of the child offers such a set of reactions. It is valuable because it means development. This should be the spirit of the work in manual training. It is the educational idea of the kindergarten. But this development is at its best the result of the most careful and accurate work, the sort of work that gives products of a high degree of perfection. This should be the method of manual training. It embodies the technical idea of the universities. With the blending of these two ideas, the motif of the kindergarten and the method of the technical school, we shall have the manual training school par excellence.
It is in this spirit that I wish to present manual training, and, though I may not myself have the requisite skill, I shall still believe it possible to show that such a training for such a purpose possesses the highest possible educational value. The motif belongs essentially to the inner content of manual training, but it must needs be stated in the beginning, since, like the anatomy of an animal, it determines very definitely its outer form.
In speaking of manual training, then, we speak of a branch of instruction capable in precisely the same way as English or mathematics of being represented throughout the entire course of formal education. It has so happened, however, that the fullest development of manual training has been reached in the secondary schools. So much is this the case, that when one speaks without modification of a manual training school, it is understood that a high school is meant—that is to say, a secondary school—one standing between the elementary schools on the one hand, and the higher education represented by the colleges and universities on the other.
In their organization these schools resemble the typical high school. They draw their material from the same sources and require the same entrance examinations. In the majority of them the unit course is three years. There is observable, however, a decided tendency to extend the time to four years, and to make the curriculum as complete as in the best four-year classical high schools. It is encouraging to believe that this tendency results from a growing recognition of the educational motif underlying manual training. In several of the larger manual training schools, and notably in the two schools in Philadelphia, a very complete fourth year of post-graduate study has already been formulated. It is probably only a question of a short time before this additional year will be included in the regular course, thus making the unit four years. Such a tendency must be regarded as highly desirable, for the work which the manual-training high schools are attempting to accomplish can scarcely be realized in less time.
The course in these high schools is a very full one. A copy of the official curriculum of the Philadelphia schools will serve as a type. It presents the outward aspect of manual training more fully and more concisely than several pages of text could possibly do. Read vertically, the curriculum shows the sequence of studies in any one department. Read horizontally, it shows the current work of any one term. (See pages 54 and 55.)
Perhaps the most notable thing about the curriculum is the amount of work which is not manual training. There are five departments in the school—the humanities, mathematics, science, drawing, and manual training. We have been proclaiming for some years past, and proclaiming from the house-tops, too, I am afraid, that these are essentially high schools, and not in even a remote sense, industrial or trade schools. Yet the discovery that such is in truth the case seems to be made independently by every visitor. The curriculum is a constant source of surprise. What are we doing with German and analytics and chemistry and political economy in a manual training school? it is asked. We are doing with them precisely what other high schools are doing with them—we are trying to make them the instruments of culture. This misapprehension is doubtless our own fault. One would expect that in new schools the nomenclature at least would be accurate. But ours is singularly inaccurate. The name of one department out of five has been chosen to designate the whole, and a branch capable of representation in all grades of school work has been made to arbitrarily stand for a given grade. In this the movement is guilty of a double inaccuracy, and it is scarcely to be wondered at that the outside world has misunderstood both the content and grade of the schools.
To be very explicit, the school day begins at nine and ends at half after two. The interval, exclusive of an intermission of half an hour, is divided into six periods, or "hours," of about fifty minutes each. As there is no school on Saturday or Sunday, this gives a total of thirty hours a week. The curriculum must be realized within these limits. During the junior and intermediate years half the time, or fifteen hours, is devoted to manual work and drawing, and the other half to the academic studies. In the senior year practically the same division holds. It hardly appears so from the curriculum, since the regular manual work, the mechanical construction, covers only six hours; but then it must be remembered that much of the science work, in chemistry and electrical engineering, is done in the laboratory, and should therefore be classed as manual work, while the surveying, being practical field work, properly comes under the same head.
Before considering the manual work in detail, it will be worth while to see what is being done in the other departments. A
PHILADELPHIA MANUAL TRAINING SCHOOLS.
manual training school is essentially a modern-language school. In addition to the mother tongue only one other language is studied, and that is German. The humanities include, besides these, history, literature, and economics. The juniors have a lesson in English every day. The work is very elementary. It is a practical drill in the use of language. It is as difficult as it is elementary. And the difficulty lies chiefly in the fact that the home forces do not co-operate. If the same number of people who now have a blind faith in the talismanic virtue of foreign languages as a means of culture could be made to appreciate the importance of an accurate use of our own beautiful mother tongue, we might reasonably hope for much better things. As it is, the daily lesson in English is a little oasis of how to use the tongue in a dreary desert of how not to use it. I have a friend, a shrewd man, who maintains that the national habit of lying is a direct outgrowth of our inaccurate use of English. The observation is worth considering.
The intermediates devote seven hours to the humanities. Two hours are given to German, an introduction to the grammar with easy reading and conversation, and five hours to history and literature. The two latter studies go hand in hand. For example, during the first term, while ancient history is being studied, the literature consists in a reading of Plutarch's Lives, Stories from the Iliad, and other books of ancient content. The same parallelism is followed in the succeeding terms during the study of mediæval and modern European history. The plan was adopted experimentally, but its success has now manual training school is essentially a modern-language school. In addition to the mother tongue only one other language is studied, and that is German. The humanities include, besides these, history, literature, and economics. The juniors have a lesson in English every day. The work is very elementary. It is a practical drill in the use of language. It is as difficult as it is elementary. And the difficulty lies chiefly in the fact that the home forces do not co-operate. If the same number of people who now have a blind faith in the talismanic virtue of foreign languages as a means of culture could be made to appreciate the importance of an accurate use of our own beautiful mother tongue, we might reasonably hope for much better things. As it is, the daily lesson in English is a little oasis of how to use the tongue in a dreary desert of how not to use it. I have a friend, a shrewd man, who maintains that the national habit of lying is a direct outgrowth of our inaccurate use of English. The observation is worth considering.
The intermediates devote seven hours to the humanities. Two hours are given to German, an introduction to the grammar with easy reading and conversation, and five hours to history and literature. The two latter studies go hand in hand. For example, during the first term, while ancient history is being studied, the literature consists in a reading of Plutarch's Lives, Stories from the Iliad, and other books of ancient content. The same parallelism is followed in the succeeding terms during the study of mediæval and modern European history. The plan was adopted experimentally, but its success has now made it a settled policy. The seniors add one hour to the German and now study literature, if one may so express it, in and for its own beauty. Civics are well represented under the triple head of American history, government, and economics.
The mathematical sequence is always an open problem. A contemporary philosopher who has written much that is wise and helpful as regards education contends that modern schools make entirely too much of mathematics. He holds that there are promising minds quite disqualified for such studies, and that it is unwise to force them along these lines as well as unfair to judge of their ability by reference to so alien a standard. His heresy seems likely to spread. I should agree with him were mathematics an isolated subject; but when one comes to think about it, we are dealing here not with a separate branch of study, but with an element common to all branches of exact study—the quantitative element. It is the expression of an acknowledged master that we have only so much science as we have mathematics. To omit or curtail such a study would be to omit or curtail exactitude of thought, and at the present juncture in human affairs we can ill afford such a result. The manual training school, therefore, as an exponent of modern education does well, I think, to lay full stress on mathematics, and I am only sorry that its work in this direction can not be more thorough and more extensive than it is. The present sequence begins with algebra and runs through geometry, plane trigonometry, and higher algebra to analytics. Up to the senior year the work is restricted to pure mathematics, but at this point two practical applications are introduced—surveying and bookkeeping. The sequence is much the same at all of the larger manual training schools. An inversion of the earlier part is now contemplated at the Northeast School. We propose to start with geometry. The motive for this somewhat unusual sequence is a serious one. Of the several branches of lower mathematics geometry makes the most direct appeal to the imagination of a child, and it does this by reason of its graphic method of presentation. Its concreteness makes it easier than either algebra or arithmetic. Algebra is nearly always difficult, and can best be introduced, it seems to me, after a boy has gained a somewhat more lively conception of quantity and relation than that given by the study of arithmetic. Such a sequence holds, I am told, in a number of English schools.
As it is essentially a modern-language and mathematical school, so also is the manual training school essentially a scientific school. The daily curriculum always includes a science lesson. The work begins with natural history (geology, botany, and zoölogy), progresses through physics, and ends with chemistry and electrical engineering. The two latter branches have long been conducted on the laboratory method, and the best schools count electrical and chemical laboratories a necessary part of their equipment. It is only very recently, however, that physics and natural history have been made laboratory courses, and the usage is still far from general. It has long been desired, but in most schools practical and financial difficulties have stood in the way. These are being gradually overcome and the science work is being put upon a sound foundation. It requires some little executive ability and considerable in the way of material resources to provide laboratory facilities for several hundred boys in so many different branches, and the schools which fail in this respect must not be criticised too severely. In our own school, for example, with a capacity for about three hundred and fifty boys, we have for the manual work of all sorts, seven laboratories or work rooms in addition to two large drawing rooms and the dynamo and engine rooms, and we find the accommodation quite insufficient. The character of the science work is in all cases elementary. So little is done in this line, in the lower schools that the high schools have to begin practically at the very foundation. The time devoted to science does, however, permit some material progress to be made. It will be noticed that the work proceeds with marked singleness of purpose. Except in the senior year only one branch is taken up in a term, and this concentration of effort leads to results. Even in the senior year, but two branches are taken up during the entire year, and these are too closely related to lead to a dissipation of thought.
Half the day is gone. The occupations are classed as academic, but they have all involved some form of manual work—writing, drawing, measuring, adjusting instruments, handling chemical apparatus, dissecting. The manual part has been apparently incidental, but its exercise of the senses and its reactions upon the brain have been no less certain. Let us keep this in mind, for no gulf is crossed in passing to the other half of the day, to the more obvious manual occupations of the drawing room and workshop.
A school of three hundred boys requires two teachers of drawing—one for the constructive drawing and one for the art work. They are kept very busy, too, for the classes must be as small as practicable and the, lesson comes every day. The work in constructive drawing is continuous, and is kept in close touch with the workshops. It begins with the simplest sort of mechanical drawing, such as a right-lined exercise for the wood shop done in pencil on manilla paper, and passes by easy stages to the more difficult and complicated mechanical drawings of the senior year—gear wheels, bridge trusses, valve movements, and the like. The work in constructive drawing is held to be a very important part of the manual training course. Its value is both for its direct bearing upon all mechanical problems and for the discipline it involves in intelligence and accuracy. It may properly be made a branch of applied mathematics, and as such has a very large thought content in addition to its manual requirements. The art work is more varied. It includes free-hand and perspective drawing, design, clay modeling, and the simpler forms of architectural draughting, as the drawing of floor plans, cross-sections, and front and side elevations. A manual training school can not be made an art school, or indeed the school of any specialty, for this would be fatal to its broader purpose of giving the faculties such general training that an intelligent choice of occupation may afterward be made. Nevertheless, the introduction to such work as it is possible to give has led in a number of cases to successful careers in architecture and kindred arts.
We have now arrived, by a somewhat circuitous path it is true, at the department which differentiates the manual training school from other high schools—at the manual training itself. This slow approach has been justified, I hope, by its success in placing the manual training work in proper relation to the rest of the curriculum, and this residue in proper relation to it. A manual training school is a unit, and as such every part of its curriculum is integral.
The boy just entering the school—he is commonly about fourteen or a little over—begins at once to work in wood and metal. He has five hours a week of each. It is found better to work in double periods, to save loss of time in putting on and off the aprons, washing hands, and so on, so that in reality he has six hours one week and four hours the next. It is a pleasant sight to see twenty-five bright little fellows at work in the wood shop. There is an air of serious earnestness about them and a sense of being all alive that promises a great deal for the future. Each has a workbench of his own and a full set of carpenter's tools at his hand. He begins by learning the use of the tools and the simpler operations of sawing and planing. When this is accomplished, the first exercise is taken up. It is a simple parallelopipedon; but each face must be smooth and true, each angle exactly a right angle, and each dimension accurate. There is more in the work than appears at first glance, and few of the little workmen escape spoiling one or two pieces before they fashion an exercise that will bear the rigid examination of the teacher. The next exercise involves chiseling and is a little more difficult. Then come joints of various sorts, framing and nailing exercises, boxes and drawers. About a dozen exercises are finished in the joinery department during the first year. The rest of the wood work is in pattern-making and starts with the opening of the second term at New Year. This requires greater nicety of touch, and involves lathe work in turning as well as the use of the simple hand tools. Four or five patterns are made during the first year. As far as possible each one brings out some new principle and is made a trifle more difficult than its predecessor. The work requires not a little patience and perseverance, for no pieces are accepted which show either inaccurate dimensions or careless workmanship. These two departments comprise the wood work of the year.
Meanwhile the metal work has also been progressing. Each boy has his bench with its vise and accompanying tools, chisels and files, calipers, and rules. The work of the first term consists entirely of chipping and filing. The rough blanks of cast iron have approximately the form of the finished exercise, but they are larger in all their dimensions and their faces are just as they come from the molding sand. To dress them down to the right dimensions, to make the faces smooth and true, the angles right, and later to fit the pieces together so that no line of light shall be visible when they are held up in front of a window or no jamming or friction noticeable when they are taken apart—all this requires nice workmanship, the sort that comes only when we put a great deal of effort into it. It is exacting work and must not be carried too far, or the little workers grow discouraged. Smithing is also begun during the first year. With the opening of the second term the vise work is reduced to three hours a week, and the two hours thus gained are given to smithing. The first exercises are very simple, mere bars of given dimensions, and are done in lead before they are attempted in iron. The use of the tools and the proper way of handling the pieces may thus be learned more leisurely than is possible with red-hot metal. The anvil chorus is here given every day, the little Vulcans half masters and half mastered in the new set of conditions attendant upon the glowing forges. They are taught to draw the metal, to upset, to weld, to forge, and in general to go through all the typical smithing operations. The work is decidedly picturesque. It introduces a new element, that of time, for the metal must be fashioned while it is hot, and makes therefore a new demand upon the worker—he must needs be alert as well as painstaking.
The majority of schools do not follow quite this sequence in their manual work. It is customary to make the joinery and vise work of the first term extend uninterruptedly throughout the rest of the junior year. The plan of making the joinery alternate with pattern-making and the vise work with smithing has been introduced at the Northeast School for a double reason. The vise work, by its very nature, is slow and rather monotonous. It seems to us unwise to dull the boy's interest in his work at the very outset, by setting him tasks which weary him out of proportion to their advantage. Moreover, there is a distinct technical loss in completing the vise work during the first year. It must be taken up again in the constructive work of the seniors, and the year's interval without practice means that some time must be devoted to regaining the lost skill. By extending the vise work over the junior and intermediate years no such gap occurs, and we hope for increased efficiency in the senior shop work. The alternation in the wood work is not so necessary, but even here there is a certain gain in the variety of occupation, and no loss in the way of dissipation of energy.
This plan has only been in operation for the one year, so that its full effects are not yet open to study. Such results as are before us favor its continuance.
Let us pass now to the second or intermediate year. The work begins, as in the junior year, with but two subjects. In wood it is pattern-making, and in metal smithing and molding. Each has five hours a week. The pattern-making is a continuation of the work already started, and includes problems of increasing difficulty. The metal work opens with molding. Lead is used for making the castings on account of its low fusing point. It would not be practicable in schools of this grade to operate a cupola furnace and cast in iron. The same principles are illustrated in the use of lead. When this part of the course is completed the work in smithing is resumed. In the latter terms there is the same bifurcation in the wood and metal work as in the junior year. The pattern-making now occupies but three hours a week, and in the last term gives place to wood-carving. Each boy makes either a complete panel himself or executes a part of the carving on some larger project, such as a chair or chest. The thirty-six hours given to the subject do not permit any very elaborate undertakings. The remaining two hours in wood work are devoted to the construction of some finished project in joinery, such as a shutter or door or staircase, and to the putting together of a panel in parquetry. Smithing and vise work alternate during the second term of this year, and in the third term the smithing gives place to ornamental iron work. No formal exercises are introduced, for the previous work in smithing has served the purpose. The ornamental work is entirely in the shape of finished projects, such as grills, electroliers, lamps, andirons, brackets, and the like. Some of these are of considerable beauty. As with the wood-carving, the limited time does not permit very elaborate accomplishment. I place a high value, however, on both of these lines of work. They are technically admirable. They have a large subjective value, and they do not a little toward the cultivation of the æsthetic sense.
In the senior year the manual work shows entire singleness of purpose. It is somewhat technical in character. The machine shop devoted to it is equipped with machine lathes, drill, planer, shaper, and vises. It has quite the appearance of being ready for serious work. The early part of the year is given to a series of formal exercises—turning straight and tapering cylinders, cutting right and left screw threads, shaping irregular parts of mechanisms, drilling, fitting, and going through the manifold operations required in machine construction. In the latter part of the year a series of mechanical projects is undertaken. These vary from year to year, and are simple or elaborate according to the capacity of the group of boys constructing them. They include such mechanisms as steam engines, centrifugal pumps, force pumps, overhead carriers, screw propellers, dynamos, and motors. The finished projects have the advantage over simple exercises of requiring a nice interchangeability, and giving splendid practice in the assemblage of parts. At the end of the year the total amount of work done is not very large. It looks, indeed, almost insignificant in comparison with the elaborate mechanism needed for its production. It will bear examination, however, and it has involved many operations and many principles.
The output of work in the manual department represents two classes—formal exercises and finished projects. The first are almost as abstract as a problem in geometry. They are numbered, labeled, and graded. They have the flavor of the schoolroom about them. The second are more concrete. They represent intrinsic worth in addition to the lesson they have taught. They have, however, no industrial value. They are never sold. They remain the property of the school, lending their beauty to the furnishing of the building, and also serving as an example and incentive to succeeding classes. They have as high an educational value as the more formal exercises, for they are carefully chosen and embody principles which are quite as general. In the early days—that is to say, some eight years ago when manual training was less secure in its educational position than now, I used to be much afraid of anything which betokened a value apart from the little workmen themselves. The production of finished articles seemed to indicate t> e shop rather than the school. This was the cause of my distrust. But now my feeling is different. I begin to set a higher value upon these completed projects. I see that it is possible to make an object of beauty, and even of utility, and get quite as deep a lesson out of the operation as if the object were ugly and useless. One may require the same careful workmanship, the same strict regard for dimensions, and may bring into play the same set of muscles in the one as in the other. In addition, there is the advantage of a keener interest. More work is done, and it is done, I believe, in a livelier and happier spirit. It is quite possible that the boy himself places a higher value upon the project than upon the process, but no harm is done. It does not change their relative values. I am disposed to believe, too, that the more unconscious the spirit in which a boy works the finer will be his results. It is not necessary to be forever suggesting to him that he is being educated. It is quite enough if we older people keep that in mind. The boy himself had much better be engaged with the activities through which we propose to educate him. When one has been teaching for some years—let us say for seven, so that I may speak from experience—one comes to value increasingly the quality of unconsciousness. The machinery of education ought to be kept strictly out of sight. The child nature is at its best when it is spontaneous. The post-graduate course is still tentative. The chief feature in the present plan is the elective character of the manual work. Three courses are offered in art, engineering, and chemistry. It is possible that, with the incorporation of the fourth year into the undergraduate curriculum, groups of parallel studies will be made elective.
I have been trying to tell, in a very plain and unvarnished way, just what we do at a manual training school. In the next paper I hope to tell why we do it, and, having done it, what it leads to.