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Under loss from storm, flood, frost, etc.:
Is it possible to get insurance against loss from such causes? Do any of your parents have insurance of this kind? What relation do the weather reports issued by the National Government have to the protection of property? Does your father receive weather reports by mail? If not, where may you find these reports? Investigate and report on the work of the Weather Bureau. (Information may be obtained directly from the Weather Bureau, Department of Agriculture, Washington.)
Urban conditions should not be entirely neglected even in rural schools, because rural life and urban life are closely dependent upon each other. The material selected for study, however, should be related to the child's experience as far as possible. For example, in rural schools in the neighborhood of Wilmington, Del., the following statement from the report of the Wilmington Board of Health was made a basis for discussion:
During the year 1914 there were 142 cases of typhoid fever, with 122 deaths. Our report for this year shows an increase of 76 cases over the previous year. This increase was due to the prevalence of typhoid in New Castle County, and we feel that Wilmington was particularly fortunate in not having an epidemic, as practically all milk and vegetable products supplied to Wilmington come from this agricultural district.
Again, from the report of the Wilmington City Board of Health was taken the classification of municipal waste into garbage, ashes, rubbish, and trade waste, with the requirement that these be kept separate: Compare these provisions for the city of Wilmington with the needs and conditions of a small community like your own. Refer to what is said about other cities and compare with conditions and arrangements in your own town. How is the garbage from your home disposed of Is it done by public provision or left to the individual householder? Whether it is done publicly or privately, note the necessity for co-operation on the part of the people. Is the garbage removed in a way to protect health and to avoid annoyance to your own families and neighbors? Is it important that garbage and other kinds of waste be kept separate in a small community? Are there laws or ordinances in your town to regulate the matter of garbage? What means can you think of to improve your own home methods of caring for garbage? 4. Relation of civics to history.—The co-ordination of geography, history, and civics instruction in the years VII-IX and earlier has been referred to in preceding pages (pp. 6-8). The application to instruction in history of the principles which have already vitalized instruction in civics is discussed in detail in later pages (pp. 16, 17). The principles there discussed, the committee believes, are equally pertinent to history instruction in both junior and senior cycles. The purpose of the present section is to emphasize the peculiar value of the civics proposed for the junior cycle from the standpoint of historical study. History as it is usually taught in the first year of the high school is no better adapted to the educational requirements of that age than the old-time civil government. The committee further maintains that, even from the standpoint of the subsequent highschool courses in history, the latter should be pre
ceded by a course in civics of the type described above. Children live in the present and not in the past. The past becomes educational to them only as it is related to the present. Hero stories and pioneer stories from history are of use in the early grades because children react naturally to them. Individuals are interested in the history of government, of education, of commerce, of industry, or of democracy, in proportion as they have a present interest in these things. Community civics endeavors to establish a consciousness of present community relations before discussing the more remote development of these relations. On the other hand, the history of a thing may add to its present interest. Railroads assume a new significance when compared with the means of transportation in colonial times, or with the road system of the Roman Empire. Community civics affords opportunity for the actual use of much historical matter, for the development of the “historical sense,” and for the creation of a desire to know more history. The best time to introduce history in the education of the child is when it is of immediate use. The traditional history course has given to the child a mass of facts, chronologically arranged, because, in the judgment of the adult, these facts may some time be useful, or for the purposes of that vague thing, “general culture.” Community civics affords opportunity to use history to illuminate topics of immediate interest. Local history finds its best opportunity in connection with community civics. There is hardly a topic in community civics that may not be made clearer by looking back to the simpler stages of its development. For developing an appreciation of what history means and for giving historical perspective to the present, local history is as useful as any other history. The most effective courses in community civics make large use of local history. In 1910 the work of keeping Philadelphia clean was— largely in the hands of a bureau of surveys, which has constructed over 1,200 miles of sewers at a cost of nearly $35,000,000, and of a bureau of highways and street cleaning, which, in 1909, employed a contractor to clean the streets of the city and to remove all ashes for $1,199,000; and to remove all garbage for $488,988.
Nothing could make so clear the statement that this complex and costly machinery of government is merely a means of citizen co-operation as the incident given in the autobiography of Benjamin Franklin, early citizen of Philadelphia:
One day I found a poor industrious man, who was willing to undertake keeping the pavement clean, by sweeping it twice a week, carrying off the dirt from before all the - neighbors’ doors, for the sum of sixpence per month, to be paid by each house. I then wrote and printed a paper setting forth the advantages to the neighborhood that might be obtained by this small expense; . . . I sent one of these papers to each house, and in a day or two went around to see who would subscribe an agreement to pay these sixpences; it was unanimously signed, and for a time well executed. This raised a general desire to have all the streets paved, and made the people more willing to submit to a tax for that purpose.
General history also finds its use. The topics set forth below are given as a mere suggestion.
Under the topic Health:
Conceptions of disease as found among uncivilized peoples, the ancients, and in mediæval times.
Alchemy and the development of a knowledge of medicine.
Development of sanitation; sanitary conditions in mediæval cities.
Greek ideal of physical development, gymnasiums and other means of perfecting the body.
Important discoveries: Circulation of the blood, surgery and anæsthetics, bacteria and germs, disinfectants.
Under the topic Education:
Of what the education of the youth consisted among sav. age, barbarous, and ancient peoples.
Among such peoples, were all the youth educated or only certain classes ?
Show how, among the savage Australians, the barbarous American Indians, the ancient Spartans, education was adapted to existing needs of life.
What kinds of schools existed among such peoples, and who were the teachers ?
The part taken by the church in education in the Middle Ages.
Founding of the great universities in Europe and Amer. ica.
Growth of public education in Europe and the United States.
How the decay of the apprentice system has led to a need for industrial education in the public schools.
Under the topic Recreation:
Early methods of trading and transportation; barter, market places, caravans, sailing vessel, etc.
The period of exploration and discovery.
Discoveries and inventions relating to transportation and communication.
Under the topic Charities:
Provision made for widows, orphans, and the poor among the ancient Jews and Mohammedans.
Bread lines in Rome and their effects.
Treatment of beggars and diseased paupers in Eastern countries and in mediæval Europe and England.
Attitude of the church toward the poor.
5. Summary.—Community civics is a course of training in citizenship, organized with reference to the pupil's immediate needs, rich in its historical, sociological, economic, and political relations, and affording a logical and pedagogically sound avenue of approach to the later social studies.
PART III.-SOCIAL STUDIES FOR YEARS X-XII.
(A) GENERAL ADMINISTRATIVE FEATURES. 1. General outline.—The committee recommends as appropriate to the last three years of the secondary school the following courses:
1. European history to approximately the end of the seventeenth century—1 year. This would include ancient and oriental civilization, English history to the end of the period mentioned, and the period of American exploration.
II. European history (including English history) since approximately the end of the seventeenth century-1 (or 1/2) year.
III. American history since the seventeenth century-1 (or 12) year. IV. Problems of American democracy-1 (or 12) year.
These courses clearly repeat the cycle of social study provided for in years VII-IX. The principle of organization suggested in the pages following for all of these courses makes them extremely flexible and easily adaptable to the special needs of different groups of pupils, or of different high-school curriculums (commercial, scientific, technical, agricultural, etc.)
2. Time allotment and minimum essentials.—The course of social studies here outlined would constitute, if all were taken, from 212 to 4 units, dependent upon whether one or one-half year is allotted to each of the last three courses. The committee believes that there should be a social study in each year of the pupil's course. It is, however, conscious of the difficulty presented by the present requirements of the high-school program. The question then arises as to what would constitute a minimum course of social study under these existing conditions. To this question the committee would reply:
(a) The minimum essentials of the year X-XII should be determined by the needs of the particular pupil or group of pupils in question.
(6) Other things being equal, it would seem desirable for the pupil, whose time in the last three years is limited, to take those social studies which would most directly aid him to understand the relations of his own social life. If, for example, he had but one year out of the three for social study, and there were no special reason for deciding otherwise, it is probable that he might better take a half year of American history and a half year of European history (courses II and III); or, a half year of American history and a half year of the twelfth-year study of social problems (courses III and IV). The choice among these might be influenced by the trend taken by his social study in the ninth year (see the alternative possibilities of the ninth-year work). · (c) If the principles advocated in the following pages of this report for the organization of instruction in the social studies be adhered to, the apparent incompleteness of the cycle of social study, due to the impracticability of taking all the courses offered, will be in some degree obviated. Briefly stated, this means that any course of history instruction should be so organized that the pupil will inevitably acquire some
familiarity with the economic, social, and civic factors in community life, just as in the study of civics or of social problems he should inevitably learn much history by using it.
I. GENERAL STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES OF ORGANIZATION. 1. Reasons for the proposed organization of history courses.—The committee recommends the organization of the history course in two or three units as indicated in the general outline on page 35 in view of the following considerations: (1) In small high schools more than two units of history are impracticable; and in large high schools, where more could be offered, few pupils would (or do) take more than two units, and these often unrelated. (2) The long historical period included in course I offers a wide range of materials from which to select, and makes possible the development of topics continuously and unhampered by chronological and geographical limitations. (3) The assignment of an equal amount of time (or twice the time if a year is given to each of courses II and III) to the period since the seventeenth century as to the period prior to that time, expresses the committee's conviction that recent history is richer in suitable materials for secondary education than the more remote periods, and is worthy of more intensive study. (4) The history of any two years that a pupil may elect under this plan will be related; that of courses II and III is contemporaneous and presents many points of contact, and that of either course II or III is continuous with that of course I.
(5) Under the present four-unit plan a premium is placed upon ancient and American history, all that goes between being left largely to chance. Under the plan proposed by the committee a much larger proportion of the pupils will secure the benefits of a study of the essentials of European history.
(6) It is important to remember that the cycle of history provided for in the years X-XII will have been once traversed, on narrower lines, in the years VII-IX. Consequently, the pupils who for any reason can not complete the cycle in the year X-XII will not be wholly deficient in the knowledge of any of its parts.
(7) Although many teachers are at present inadequately prepared to follow the method of instruction advocated by the committee, which requires the selection of materials on the basis of the pupils’ own immediate interests and of current problems (see below), the compression of a longer historical period into a briefer course will bring pressure to bear to induce a more careful selection of facts and events for emphasis.
2. Organization of subject matter within history courses.—Within each course the committee recommends—
(1) The adoption to the fullest extent possible of a “topical" method, or a “problem " method, as opposed to a method based on chronological sequence alone.
(2) The selection of topics or problems for study with reference to (a) the pupil's own immediate interest; (b) general social significance.
Concrete suggestion as to what the committee means by these criteria is given in the following pages, especially in the three type lessons on pages 20-22.
The organization of history instruction on this basis unquestionably requires greater skill on the part of the teacher than the traditional method, less dependence upon a single textbook of the types now existent, and larger use of many books, or of encyclopedic books, for reference purposes. If the selection of materials is to be determined by immediate interests and current problems, it is manifestly impossible to furnish in advance a detailed and complete outline of topics for universal and invariable use. To attempt to do so would be contrary to the very spirit of the method. Whether Miss Harris, for example, should dwell at length upon the War of 1812 and the subjects of the rights of neutrals (see p. 20), could not be determined for her in advance by a committee, nor even by an international lawyer to whom the question might seem of profound importance. The matter was determined for her by the exigencies of the hour and the interests of her pupils. So, also, was the method by which she approached and unfolded the subject.
On the other hand, there are certain topics that approach universality and invariability in their application. It is hardly conceivable, for example, that Miss Dilks could have omitted a study of “Athens—the City Beautiful” (see p. 20). The love for the beautiful is universal. In varied forms it is common to the pupils in the class, and to all communities, nations, peoples and times. Athens represents a climax in the development of esthetics. But the feature that especially characterizes Miss Dilks's lesson is the method by which she brought “Athens—the City Beautiful" into the range of the pupil's own interest and experience and made it a direct means for the further cultivation of a fundamental interest in their lives.
In this there is suggested a possible organizing principle for history that is at once scientific and especially effective in teaching pupils who have had a course in community civics of the type described earlier in this report. This organizing principle is found in the “ elements of welfare " or “fundamental interests,” which afford an effective basis for the organization of the latter subject. It is a subjective rather than an objective basis. In the case just cited the pupils themselves have a more or less developed esthetic interest, which expresses itself in various elemental ways and reacts to conditions in the immediate community. This interest is common to all mankind and finds expression in a great variety of ways. It expressed itself in a remarkable manner
among the Greeks, who developed certain standards of beauty that have profoundly influenced the world since their time.
Already the principle of organization here suggested is being adopted more or less completely in the treatment of one great phase of history-that which relates to the “economic interest ” and is expressed in economic or industrial history. Not all industrial history has been written on this basis of organization. Reference is made to the type of industrial history to which Prof. Robinson evidently refers in the statement quoted on page 22 of this report and which is clearly illustrated in the lesson described by Miss Hazard (p. 21). The same principle is applied in the course suggested by Dr. Leavitt and Miss Brown in their chapter on history in “ Prevocational Education in the Public Schools.".
But boys and girls, even in vocational and prevocational classes, have fundamental interests other than the economic. They are the interests or “elements of welfare” that serve as the organizing principle of community civics-physical, economic, intellectual, esthetic, religious, and social. Their relative prominence varies among nations as among individuals, partly because of temperament and partly because of physical and social influences; but the story of the life of any nation is the story of effort to provide for them. The life history of a nation, as of any community, consists of two great lines of endeavor which are, of course, closely interrelated: (1) The endeavor to establish permanent and definite relations with the land, which involves the geographical factor, and (2) the endeavor to establish effective means of co-operation to provide for the “ elements of welfare,”
· which involves the evolution of a form of government. The committee merely raises the question as a basis for discussion and experiment whether the principle of organization here suggested may not do as much to vitalize instruction in history as it has already done to vitalize instruction in government under the name of community civics.
3. Important aims in teaching history.—(1) A primary aim of instruction in American history should be to develop a vivid conception of American nationality, a strong and intelligent patriotism, and a keen sense of the responsibility of every citizen for national efficiency. It is only on the basis of national solidarity, national efficiency (economic, social, political), and national patriotism that this or any nation can expect to perform its proper function in the family of nations.
(2) One of the conscious purposes of instruction in the history of nations other than our own should be the cultivation of a sympathetic understanding of such nations and their peoples, of an intelligent appreciation of their contributions to civilization, and of a just attitude toward them. So important has this seemed that a proposal has recently been made that
one year of the history course be supplanted by a course to be known as “ A Study of Nations."
In suggesting such a study, Clarence D. Kingsley says:
The danger to be avoided above all others is the tendency to claim that one nation has a sweeping superiority over others. The claim of such superiority, as among individuals, is a sure cause of irreconcilable hatred. The cure for this narrow and partisan attitude is to be found in the broad conception that humanity is greater than any one nation. The idea should be developed that every nation has, or may have, something of worth to contribute to other nations, and to humanity as a whole. This conception when thoroughly inculcated would lead to a national respect for other nations, and to the belief that the continued existence and development of all nations are essential to the development of civilization. We can not expect that a principle so fundamental and comprehensive can be inculcated in the abstract; but through a specific study of many nations, the achievements and possibilities of each of which have been studied in the concrete, this idea may become established.
This conception of the supplementary value of the dissimilarities of the different nations and peoples, together with the ideal of human brotherhood, which is generally thought of in terms of essential similarity, should do much to establish genuine internationalism, free from sentiment, founded on fact, and actually operative in the affairs of nations.
This “ Study of nations," as Mr. Kingsley sees it, instead of focusing attention upon the past, would start frankly with the present of typical modern nations—European, South American, oriental—and would use history in explanation of these nations and of clearly defined problems of supreme social importance at the present time. Not only would the use of history organized in this way, according to Mr. Kingsley, “tend to reduce friction in international relations, as such friction often results from popular clamor, born of a lack of understanding of foreign nations,” but “it would help to a truer understanding and appreciation of the foreigners who come to our shores,” and “it would lead us to be more helpful in our relations with backward peoples, because it would help us to value them on the basis of their latent possibilities, rather than on the basis of their present small achievements."
(3) In connection with the several history courses, and especially in connection with courses II and III. due attention should be given to Latin America and the Orient, especially Japan and China, and to creat international problems of social, economic, and political importance to America and the world at large.
II. DETAILED DISCUSSION OF PRINCIPLES UNDER
LYING HISTORY INSTRUCTION. 1. The position of history in the curriculum.-History, which has long occupied the center of the stage among the social studies of the high school, is facing competition not only from other branches of study,
2 Kingsley, Clarence D., The Study of Nations: Its Pogsibilities as a Social Study in High Schools. School and Society, Vol. III, pp. 37-41, Jan. 8, 1916.
2 Leavitt and Brown, Prevocational Education in the Public Schools, chap. viii. Houghton Mifflin Co.
such as science, but also from other social studies. The customary four units, which have been largely fixed in character by the traditions of the historian and the requirements of the college, are more or less discredited as ill adapted to the requirements of secondary education. In a recent address Miss Jessie C. Evans, of the William Penn High School for Girls, Philadelphia, said: There is a growing danger that the traditional history course will only be permitted to the college-preparatory student. I visited, the other day, one of the largest high schools in the country and found that the majority of the students took no history at all. The new definitions of culture and the new demands for efficiency are causing very severe tests to be applied to any subject that would hold its own in our schools. This statement suggests certain questions: 2. To what eatent and in what ways are college requirements and life requirements mutually erclusive? —In this connection the words of Prof. Dewey quoted on page 4 are repeated with an interpolation: If we could really believe that attending to the needs of present growth would keep the child and teacher alike busy and would also provide the best possible guarantee of the learning needed in the future [in college or elsewhere], transformation of educational ideals might soon be accomplished, and other desirable changes would largely take care of themselves. The problem of articulation between elementary and secondary schools, on the one hand, and between secondary schools and colleges, on the other, would take care of itself if elementary school, secondary school, and college would each give proper attention to the needs of present growth. 3. To what eartent does an increase in the amount of history offered insure more universal or better social education?—The historical training acquired by the pupils is not proportional to the number of courses offered. Whether pupils elect history or not depends, first, upon whether they want it; and, second, upon the demands of other subjects upon their time. Those who are concerned for the prestige of history in the school program will find that their gains by adding courses are largely “on paper.” In small high schools more than two or three units of history are impracticable; and in large schools few pupils take more than two units of the subject, these frequently disconnected; the majority take only what is required. Two or three units of history are ample in these years, provided they are adapted to the needs of the pupil and have been preceded by the cycle which this report recommends for the years VII-IX (see p. 6).
4. What “tests " must the history course meet if it is “ to hold its own in our schools?”—It is true that “the new definitions of culture and the new demands for efficiency are causing very severe tests to be applied ” to all subjects, and the traditional type of history is in danger because it fails to meet the tests.
The ideal history for each of us would be those facts of past human experience to which we should have recourse oftenest in our endeavors to understand ourselves and our
fellows. No one account would meet the needs of all, but all would agree that much of what now passes for the elements of history meets the needs of none. No one questions the inalienable right of the historian to interest himself in any phase of the past that he chooses. It is only to be wished that a greater number of historians had greater skill in hitting upon those phases of the past which serve us best in understanding the most vital problems of the present.— (Prof. James Harvey Robinson, in The New History.) The italics in this quotation are our own. It is the chief business of the maker of the course of study, the textbook writer, and the teacher to do what the historian has failed to do, viz, to “hit upon those phases of the past which serve us ” (the high-school pupil) “best in understanding the most vital problems of the present.” Further, “the most vital problems of the present " for the high-school pupil are the problems which he himself is facing now or which are of direct value to him in his present processes of growth. Prof. Mace has made the following statement: To connect events and conditions with life as the pupil knows it will make history more or less of a practical subject. The pupil will see where his knowledge turns up in the affairs of everyday life. He will really discover how present-day institutions came to be what they are. Whenever or wherever he strikes a point in history, in Egypt, Greece, Rome, England, or even America, the point must be connected with modern life. Otherwise it may have only a curious or perhaps an academic interest for him, or it may have no interest whatever. This connection may be worked out in several ways. The Egyptians had certain ideas about immortality, and therefore certain customs of burial. The Greeks probably took these up and modified them. The Romans changed them still further, especially after the coming of Christ. The Roman Catholic Church made still greater changes. The Reformation introduced new conceptions of the soul after death, and to-day the great variety of ideas on the subject show the tremendous differentiations that have come since the days of old Egypt. Likewise, it shows how tenacious the idea has been—its continuity. How much interest is aroused if the student is put to working out this problem of the life development of an idea! What sort of history is this? It is neither ancient, medieval, or modern, but all these in one. It is the new kind of general history—the kind that socializes the student. It makes him feel that history has some meaning when he sees ancient ideas functioning in the present. Not every idea in history lends itself to such treatment. Many facts have not preserved their continuity in as perfect a way, but seem to have lost it before modern life is reached. But there is another relation—that of similarity. The reforms of Solon in Greece and of the Gracchi in Rome, the causes of Wat Tyler's rebellion, the measures of Lloyd George in England to-day, and the social-justice idea of the Progressive platform in the Presidential campaign of 1912 bear striking resemblance to each other. While they can not be connected by progressive evolution, they are richly suggestive in the lessons they teach. Again, many events whose continuity we may not be able to trace have valuable lessons growing out of their dissimilarity. By making note of their contrasts we may see their bearing on modern life. The terrible Thirty Years' War, the Puritan Revolution, the Revolution of 1688, the Anerican Revolution, and finally the French Revolution, present such striking contrasts as to give the student some