The How and Why Library

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The How and Why Library  (1915) 
by Eleanor Stackhouse Atkinson
The How and Why Library


The "Why" of the How and Why Library
Stories of History and Geography
The articles in this department deal, in their historic order, with the various peoples who constitute or "America,"—where they came from, and our indebtedness to each for their contributions to our national life.
I.  The Red Child of the Forest—The Indian
II.  The Little Pale Faces Who Came Over the Sea—The Puritans
III.  Little Wooden Two Shoes—The Dutch
IV.  Ship Loads of Politeness—The French
V.  Little Friends in Furs—In the Home of the Esquimos
VI.  Children from Spain—With Juan and Dolores in Cuba
VII.  The Little Black Children Who Lived in a "Zoo"—Life in Africa
VIII.  Babes in the Woods—With Daniel Boone in Kentucky
IX.  Pioneer Days and Ways—From Log Cabin to Whitehouse
X.  The Children of the Vikings—What the Swedish and Norwegian Peoples Have Brought to America
XI.  The Miraculous Pitcher—Brave Humor, Family Devotion and Resourcefulness of the Irish
XII.  The Golden Fleece of America—To California With the Gold Seekers
XIII.  Alice in Wonderland—To California in a Palace Car with Grandpapa
XIV.  The Children of Topsy and Turvy Land—The Little Folks of Japan
XV.  All Work and No Play for Little Wung Foo—The Chinese Boy
XVI.  All Play and No Work for Manuelo—Children of the Philippines
XVII.  Children of "The Arabian Nights"—Home Life in the Desert
XVIII.  The Little Country of the Big Mountain—Switzerland and the Alps
XIX.  The "Front Door" of America—Ellis Island
Travel Drawings
Wonders of the World We Live On
I.  Land—How soil is made from rocks and how the earth got its high mountains, sandy deserts, lakes, oceans, green valleys, and winding streams.
II.  Water—How the sun pumps the ocean up into the sky and, with the wind's help, brings rain, snow, hail and fog.
III.  Air—Life at the bottom of our blue ocean—The air rivers and how they flow. How to tell when air is bad.
The Story of Life
The articles in this department are intended to teach the child the sacredness and the wonder of all life and its beginnings in seed and germ, and to prepare for a study of the related sciences in the higher grades by introducing him, in a simple and entertaining way, to the living world of plants and animals, starting with the simplest and passing, step by step, to the highest forms.
I.  We Meet the Fairy Godmother—Story of Cell Life
II.  How the Yeast Plant Grows in a Loaf of Bread
III.  Sailor Plants and Robinson Crusoes—Story of Sea Plants, Lichens, etc.
IV.  Water Babies that Live on Land—Liverworts and Their Whips and Balls
V.  Pigmy Plants and Their Wonderful Labors—Mosses
VI.  How the Ferns Grew Bones and Babies—Learning to Stand Alone
VII.  How Fairy Fungi Turned Into a Dandelion
VIII.  Why Plants are Like Squirrels—How They Store Food
IX.  Plants Have Visitors and Travel Abroad—How Wind, Insects and Birds Carry Seeds
X.  How Plants are Promoted—Work of Bees and Mr. Burbank
I.  The Little Animal that Walks with Its Stomach and Eats with Its Feet—The Amoeba
II.  Water Babies that Live in a Village—Sponges
III.  A Sea Flower that Eats and Moves—The Sea-Anemone
IV.  The Web of Life: Mother Nature at Her Loom
V.  The Star Fish and Sea Urchins that Play with Live Dolls
VI.  A Long Speech by a Little Worm—Lessons the Earthworm Teaches
VII.  The Earthworm Puts on Armor—Curious Anatomy of the Crawfish
VIII.  How the Worm in Armor Counts by Twos and Threes
IX.  Mr. Crawfish and His Table Manners
X.  The Crawfish, the Spider and the Fly—An Interesting Comparison
XI.  Why the Crawfish Crawled Into a Shell—The Oyster
XII.  The Oyster Learns to Swim—The Fish
XIII.  The Oyster-Fish that Climbed on Shore—The Frog
XIV.  Birds of the Water and Birds of the Air—Curious Resemblances
XV.  Water Babies and Other Babies that Drink Milk—The Vertebrates
Nature Study
"Nature Study" in the modern school, emphasizes, first of all, the things which the child can investigate most readily—birds, insects, flowers and trees. The following articles take him through the entire year and deal with the most important features of familiar plants, trees and insects and all the common varieties of birds. The child's interest in nature is spontaneous, and through no other medium can his observation and reasoning powers be so easily developed.
Part I. Flowers
I.  A Wild Garden and Its Tenants
II.  Little Lion-tooth (Dandelion) and Its Cousins
III.  A Good Luck Family—Clover
IV.  The Bonny Briar Bush—The Wild Rose Family
Part II. Trees (A Year in the Forest)
I.  Spring; "Rockaby Babies"
II.  Summer; "In the Tree Tops"
III.  Autumn; "When the Wind Blows"
IV.  Winter; "The Cradles Will Rock"
Part III. Insects
I.  Mrs. Musca Domestica Calls—The Fly Tells Its Story
II.  Mrs. Garden Spider "At Home"
III.  Gulliver Man and His Lilliputian Enemies—Destructive Insects
IV.  Pigmy Friends That Fly and Hop and Creep
Part IV. Birds
I.  Bird Songs and Colors
II.  Bird Nests and Babies
III.  Little Friends in Feathers
Wild Animals You Would Like to Know
Related to those subjects on which he specializes in Nature Study are the animals of the "Zoo", the traveling menagerie and the "Wild Animals Near Home." This interest, properly encouraged and developed, is a source of never-failing delight and mental growth.
I.  Big Brother Bear
II.  Pet Pussy and King Lion
III.  Here Come the Elephants
IV.  The Animal Acrobat and Clown—The Monkey
V.  The Ship of the Desert—The Camel
VI.  Kangaroo and 'Possum, too
VII.  The Graceful Camelopard—The Giraffe
VIII.  Mr. Nose Horn and Mr. River Horse—Rhinoceros and Hippopotamus
IX.  Wild Animals Near Home—Squirrels, Rabbits and Other Shy Neighbors
Picture Visits to the Great Industries
Every child has an instinctive interest in the great industries and how the wheels "go round." Familiarity with these processes is one of the most practical phases of Geography teaching in our schools, and the co-operation of the home, if supplied with appropriate material, is easy and desirable. Nine typical industries of special interest to children are graphically presented in this department.
I.  Big Business from Little Seeds—Wheat and Flour Milling
II.  The Wonderful Gift of Good King Cotton—Culture and Manufacture
III.  The Little Iron Pig that Goes to Market—Ore Fields to Steel Mill
IV.  Art in Making Mud Pies—The Pottery Industry
V.  When A Tree is Lumber—Lumbering and Woodworking Industries
VI.  Just to Light a Fire—How Matches are Made
VII.  A Look Through a Window—Glassmaking
VIII.  The Bread of Nogi, Wung Foo, and Manuelo—Rice Growing
IX.  Brownie Tick Tock and the Stars—Watch and Clock Manufacture
Good Health and Our Soldiers of Peace
The articles in the two departments following are intended to interest and instruct the chid with regard to his own good health, and the family health (domestic sanitation), and to create a spirit of appreciative helpfulness toward those departments of city life which protect us from disease, fire and crime.
The How and Why of Common Things
The questions asked every day by children are now recognized as offering a unique opportunity for parent and teacher. They are the child's own spontaneous expression of his desire to know. He is hungry. Feed him. In this department are answered in a very entertaining style nearly 100 typical questions. The properties of Heat, Light, Sound, Electricity and other natural forces are explained, and the foundation laid for the study of Physiology, Acoustics, Astronomy, Chemistry, Physics and other sciences in the higher grades.
III.  What is Smoke?
How and Why of Etiquette
Dr. Eliot says the subject matter of this section is one of the most important parts of education. "Manners" and knowledge of certain social forms are no less valuable in "getting on" in one's life work. Lack of such information and training frequently explains why some succeed while other of equal or greater natural ability, fail. Self control, grace of bearing, ease of expression, the habit of drawing out the best in others—these things the world rightly regards as the real tests of education. Yet proper and sensible guidance is difficult to find.

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1926.

The author died in 1942, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 75 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.