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cal tables. This would tend to give popularity both to books and schools..
It may be mentioned, that, as a rule, heathen children will read native classics, whether the Missionary allows it or not. The expurgated editions, in the great majority of cases, will satisfy the parents. It is much better that the study of such should be recognised than that the others be read by stealth.
Course of Instruction. This must vary according to circumstances. The following may be attempted in a good village school :
FIRST, OR LOWEST, CLASS.
Mensuration. Elementary Problems. School Fees. These should always be levied if possible. It prevents the people being pauperised; the instruction is more valued, and the attendance more regular. Among poor low caste children no fee, or at least only a nominal one, can be exacted. The children of the humblest Christians should be educated as far as practicable. Efforts to establish schools among heathen children of corresponding grades, have been very unsatisfactory. The children come to school irregularly and only for a short time. Soon they forget all that they have learned. Hence the aim should rather be to get children of the middle classes, who can afford to keep them long enough at school to derive real benefit. From such, school fees can be obtained.
Mixed Schools.- - By schools of this class are meant those attended both by boys and girls. This plan has been successfully adopted in Tinnevelly and some other districts. Years ago, Cousin called
" the object tion to mixed schools a wide-spread error, which makes female education on a great scale an almost insolublé problem.” In many parts of India there is great difficulty in securing competent female teachers, and still greater difficulty in retaining them. Young girls may be taught with their brothers, who can also take them to and from school. The Schoolmaster's wife may teach them a little needlework a part of the day. This course cannot be taken with girls beyond a certain age; but it may be followed with advantage in many places.
Night Schools.--A few years ago considerable attention was excited in England by the early age which children left school. A Conference for the special consideration of the subject was held under the patronage of the late Prince Consort. The remedy which was most generally approved was the establishment of Night Schools. Several have been opened with success in different parts of India.
One great benefit of such schools is, that they aid in increasing the supply of Mission Agents. Mental activity is sustained by night schools, and when Divine grace has touched the heart, young men accustomed to toil, prove valuable labourers in situations for which most agents from boarding schools would be ill qualified.
BOARDING SCHOOLS. Schools of this class seem absolutely necessary, for the present at least, to obtain a sufficient number of youths fit for admission into Training or Theological Institutions. Some years ago the Boarding Schools of
the American Madura Mission were broken up, in the hope that the pupils would remain longer in the village day schools. This expectation was not realized to any extent—the children, when their parents could no longer support them at school, went off to labour. Hence the candidates for admission into the Theological Seminary are now of a very inferior class. The Missionaries consider that the Boarding Schools must be re-established.
But granting that children must be removed into such schools when they reach a certain age, a great deal of money is wasted in supporting little boys and girls, whose parents are quite able to keep them at home, and would have sent them to the Village Schools if they had remained with them. A number of schools might be supported with the money thus saved; while, after all, the Boarding Schools might be almost equally useful, by admitting the children at an age when they really required and could profit from instruction superior to that imparted in Village Schools. Should it be said that their parents are not qualified to give them a home training, it may be answered that many
of them are the children of Catechists. The remedy in other cases should be to establish a mothers' class and teach them how to manage their children.
To the eye it may be more pleasing to see all the girls in a boarding school with a neat uniform dress. But does not the following extract show in reality a happier state of things ?
“ At first we clothed as well as boarded our pupils, and then led them to provide one article after another till they clothed themselves. It was delightful to see the interest parents began to take in clothing their daughters in order to send them to school. After they provided their own garments they took better care of them, and so learned to take better care of other
* Woman and her Saviour in Persia, p. 46,
It is remarked in the life of the Poet Wordsworth
“A child will soon learn to feel a stronger love and attachment to its parents when it perceives that they are making sacrifices for its instruction. All that precept can teach is nothing, compared with convictions of this kind. In short, unless book attainments are carried on by the side of moral influences, they are of no avail. Gratitude is one of the most benign of moral influences." : The Rev. J. Thomas, Tinnevelly, thus guards against the evils most incident to the Boarding School system :
“I have remarked that boys who are fed and clothed at our Boardiny-Schools, are apt to become both lazy and proud; and in order to prevent and remedy this evil, I have as hitherto made them muster every morning at five, except during the monsoon months, when they come at a later hour, and work in the compound and garden an hour and a half. They have also plots of ground appropriated to themselves, the produce of which they are permitted to realise and spend as they like. They are thus kept assiduously engaged either in digging the ground, drawing up water, or something else. As soon as the work is over, they bathe and return to their domestic departments. I find this an admirable plan, and would recommend it to similar institutions, as it keeps the boys from being ashamed to work, develope all their physical powers, and preserves them in vigorous health.”
ENGLISH EDUCATION. Throughout most parts of India there is a strong desire to learn English. One way or other, the people are making efforts that their children may study that language. It is much better that it should be acquired in a Mission School along with Christian instruction, than that the children should attend parely secular schools. In most cases, these are the alternatives.
English Schools have this great advantage over those in which the vernacular alone is taught, that the pupils