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to be aware of its own need of discipline. This is the case now, as much as it was before Bacon lived and wrote. It is natural to form theories without sufficient examination, and to support them against all truth and probability. Now it was the direct tendency of Bacon's philosophy to cure this evil. Thus it would not merely establish true principles of natural philosophy, but would disclose the true way for the mind to enter into these principles. It would be manifested not merely in the character of the results which would be attained, but in the mode by which they would be reached. Not merely in the truths believed, but in the nature of this belief, and in the tenure by which theories would be held. It is one thing to believe in the truth of certain theories which the application of the inductive system has established, and quite a different thing to arrive at those results by the inductive method. In the one case, the mind has adopted the opinions of others as true upon authority ; in the other, it has blossomed and brought forth fruit of its own.

The difficulty which the philosophers of Bacon's time felt in bringing themselves to practise upon his principles, is still experienced. The disposition to theorize is checked in its operations by a fear that its fallacies will be detected and exposed. But what was labour then, is labour now. The royal road to science is still undiscovered. And if we would enter into the principles of true philosophy in the true way, we must do it by a patient induction of our own. It is not meant that erery man must himself perform all the experiments and make all the observations necessary to authorize the conclusion. These may be taken on the testimony of those who have heard and seen. But there is a process for the mind to go through in forming its conclusions, a step of which correspondsto and rests upon every one of these facts and observations. This is what each one must do for himself, if he would be a philosopher.

The principle we are speaking of is easily explained. We have said that a theory now rests upon certain facts and observations, and is received as an inference from them ; or rather as a general expression of the truth which they manifest. Hence it is evident that in order to understand what this theory signifies, and with what qualifications it is to be received, it must be viewed as a result from these facts. Thus every man who would understand it, must view the facts in his own mind, and form his own induction. Those who receive it in any other manner, are as much bound by a falsc attachment to theory, and as liable to sectarian zeal, as were the ancients. It is obvious, then,

that the true system of natural philosophy, has a most important bearing upon the state of the human mind. The general effects it has already produced are manifested in the spirit of independence and free inquiry which has marked its progress. But this is to be regarded as scarcely yet commenced. For, strange as it may seem, the principles of Bacon's philosophy are scarcely yet introduced into their proper sphere of operation. It was natural for those who found it so difficult to conform their own minds to their influence, to suppose them to be too sublime for childhood and youth. But the science of education is beginning to be better understood ; and it will soon be seen that Bacon has had no truer follower than Pestalozzi. Education is now beginning to be regarded as consisting not so much in the acquisition of knowledge, as in the formation of philosophical habits of mind. For the true philosophy of mind is as applicable to children as to men. The idea that in the season of youth, rules and problems are to be learned by rote, and the mind thus stored with knowledge for the uses of after life, is fast becoming obsolete. And instead of an irksome and worse than useless attempt to force the young mind to retain by an unnatural grasp, what it cannot comprehend, our schools will soon become the true nurseries of intellect-places where the infant mind instead of satiety and disgust, will acquire a thirst after knowledge, and learn the laws of its own development.

And instead of being decked with artificial flowers, and loaded with unnatural fruit, it will be encouraged to strike its own roots into the earth, and spread its branches to the soft influences of heaven, and thus be made capable of the purposes of its own destiny.

To show the application of this view of the inductive method to primary schools, a single instance will suffice. We select the science of arithmetic. And we say that the inductive method is not merely the true mode of learning it, but the only mode. Disguise the matter as much as we please, there is yet an order in the process of acquiring it, which cannot be reversed. We may insist that the abstract principle, shall first be committed to memory under the name of a rule, and then add examples to be mechanically solved by its application. But the abstract rule was never framed, till long after the mind of him who framed it, had been familiar with the examples which it embraces. And he who would understand it, must go through a similar process.

He must see the truth in his own mind, in single individual examples, before he can understand the abstract rule or proposition which is the expression of the general truth. The usual mode

of teaching this science is therefore essentially defective. It presents things truly ; but it presents the unintelligible side of them—unintelligible, because the principles by which it is to be understood have not first been explained. Perhaps we ought not to dismiss this part of the subject, without expressing our satisfaction that so far as the science of arithmetic is concerned, the evil is in a great measure provided for. And with this we also express our individual opinion, that the introductory arithmetics by Colburn and others, upon the plan of Pestalozzi, are now exerting a more powerful influence in philosophizing the human mind, than all the metaphysical books of the age.

Perhaps the remarks we have already made will be sufficient to explain the view we wish to convey. By the application of the inductive method, the natural world has been made to yield its treasures for the convenience and gratification of man. But he who stops here in his contemplation of the benefits to be derived from a true system of natural philosophy, takes but an outside view of the subject. Its principal use has not been displayed in developing the laws of the natural world, and in ministering to the external conveniences of natural life. It has had a higher use to perform in its reaction upon the mind itself. The new and increased strength and vigour and independence of mind, which are beginning to be manifested by all classes, are to be attributed to the impetus received from the principles of a sound natural philosophy.' These have to do directly with the powers and operations, and the constant, daily habits of the mind. And their tendency to demonstrate the true laws of natural science is not more sure, than their wholesome influence upon the mind itself. Natural science is the world in which the mind loves to labour ; and the tendency and effect upon itself, are similar to the effects which the body derives from free exercise in the

open air.

But, as was said before, these benefits are not transferable from one mind to another. The health and strength of which we are speaking are such as can be acquired only by individual application. It is impossible, from the very nature of the case, that the same identical truth can be communicated from one person to another. The fruit can be united to no branch but that which produced it. The cement of its living union is something more than the mere power of adhesion, or art might supply its place. As has already been observed, therefore, it is merely the external benefit of true natural philosophy which is made common to all. A way is opened and facilities are afford

ed for all to enter into its more important uses. But for this object much labour and personal investigation is necessary. And it is no uncommon thing, even at the present day, to see many who have enjoyed all the advantages of education which our country affords, who have yet made no advances in true philosophy. They may have become acquainted with the results, but they have not been disciplined by the process. But much is to be anticipated from the changes in this respect which our elementary schools are exhibiting. Not only more of the rising generation will become imbued with the true principles of philosophy, but they will have the advantages of an earlier commencement, with no injurious prejudices to overcome We may predict with certainty that great advantages will result from these improvements ; but we cannot with accuracy define their character nor measure their importance.

ART. II.- Observations on Infant Schools.

INFANT schools are an institution of recent origin ; and, in this country, particularly, it is but a short time since they became objects of general attention. Few of our community have had opportunity of personally observing the operation of these schools; and many have necessarily derived all their knowledge of them from occasional report. A brief account, therefore, of the character and design of schools of this description, may not be uninteresting as an introduction to more general statements relating to the same subject.

An infant school may be best described, perhaps, as something which resembles, not so much a school, as a large nursery, and the object of which is to provide for its little inınates employment and amusement, not less than instruction. A number of young children, varying, in different instances, from fifty to one or even two hundred in amount, and embracing all diversities of age, from that of about six years down to that of eighteen months, are assembled to spend the day under the care of a teacher, furnished with the requisite aid of one or more female assistants.

The arrangements made for the benefit of these infant pupils, are designed, in the first place, with reference to comfort and health. A spacious, airy, and well lighted room, with several smaller apartments adjoining, as well as a suitable play ground, is accordingly provided in all cases where such advantages are accessible ; and the children receive every attention for convenience and health, for their noon meal, for intervals of play, of rest, and even of sleep, which could be devised by the most solicitous care of a mother. In many instances, also, the additional aids of simple taste and decoration have been employed; and the mind of childhood, is delighted with specimens or representations drawn from the vast stores of grandeur and beauty, amid which it is the common privilege of man to be placed by creative Wisdom.

The intellectual instruction imparted at these schools, is restricted to a few simple but useful and interesting elements. It embraces the rudiments of arithmetic, a good degree of progress in reading and orthography, some information about animals, plants, and minerals, and the various substances composing articles of daily use in household affairs or the arts of life,—beside other things which it would consume too much time to enumerate.

But the peculiar feature in the infant school system, is, the excellence of its moral instruction, by which the pupils, instead of being made passive recipients of injunctions and silent listeners to truth, are allowed a free and varied intercourse with each other and with their teacher, and are made active and spontaneous agents in their own improvement. The moral lessons of the infant schools, if they ever can be detached from the other departments of instruction and exercise, may be briefly said to resemble, as nearly as possible, the tender, affectionate, and judicious management of a well regulated nursery. In its connexion, however, with the cheering and enlivening influence of numbers, its free scope for social amusement and recreation, and its frequent recourse to the elementary principles of interesting and useful knowledge, the infant school method has some points of superiority over perhaps the best forms of domestic nursery discipline,- for at least that part of the day, which it is desirable to have occupied with instruction.

The moral part of infant school education is eminently rational and affectionate. It is founded on familiar and common occurrences in the school room, not conveyed in language always formal and seldom intelligible : it is addressed to the bet

VOL. IV.-NO: 1.

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