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271 Jesus blessing the little Chil-
of Character, 52 Jesus walking on the Wa-
65 History, Natural, of Plants
234 History, Natural, of Ani-
139 124 Swan,
140 126 Goose,
140 126 Duck,
141 127 Lark,
141 127 Nightingale,
141 128 Parrot,
142 128 Cuckoo,
142 129 Hymns,
260 130 Items of Various Subjects, 99 130 Manual Exercises,
21 131 Marching,
23 131 Moral Lessons,
on Texts in Rhyme, 225 132 Numeral Frame,
30 133 Pronunciation,
293 133 Punctuation,
294 134 Questions on Familiar Sub135 jects, 136 Regulations,
26 136 Reading Lessons,
30 137 Singing,
25 137 | School-room,
27 138 Teacher,
19 139 Time, Division of,
INFANT SCHOOL MANUAL.
The primary object of Infant Schools is, to redeem the valuable portion of life which passes between the time when children go from their mothers’ arms, to that at which they are ordinarily sent to the common school. This interesting part of life, except with a favored few, has been to a great degree wasted and worse than wasted for want of appropriate instruction.
Though the vigor and activity which the healthful child enjoys at this age, will prevent idleness, and cause it to acquire much knowledge by its own observation and amusing experiments, yet few are aware of the amount of wrong impressions received, and false conclusions adopted, by the infant during this period, which, after they have been retained for several years, it is difficult to throw aside, though reason is convinced of their ab
It is the object in these schools not so much to discipline the tender mind and induce premature study, as to assist the eager curiosity of infancy to obtain a right knowledge of the objects which arrest its attention, and prevent those mistakes which tend, more than any other circumstance, to give a wrong estimate of infant minds, and to induce many to view them as incapable of understanding the reason of things, and of course to deem it immaterial whether communications to them are dic
tated by reason, or humor, or whether the objects of their curiosity are represented in true or false colors.
It is of incalculable importance that the early impressions made on the infant mind should be such as will have a tendency to give a right direction to the moral character. This system is ingeniously adapted to accomplish this desirable work. It is founded in right
The fear and love of God are the grand principles which it brings into exercise.
It is a melancholy truth that there is a tendency to evil in the human heart; but this is not so strong in infancy as when permitted to increase and strengthen unchecked, to riper years,
“ The spring time of our years is soon
Dishonored and defiled by budding ills,
The principles of the infant school system require us to form a due estimate of the infant character. The impression which many appear to have of the rank in which infants should be classed, is erroneous and injurious to improvement. It may be that persons who will not permit children to talk in their presence, would be enlightened by them if they would deign to listen to their artless suggestions. Theirs is the privilege of having minds unsullied by inveterate prejudice, or heated ambition, and uncorrupted by passions which are the growth of riper age.
Their curiosity is awake, their recollection bright, their discernment quick, their consciences active. They judge accurately; they want nothing but a knowledge of words by which ideas are expressed, to enable them to utter dicisions upon some of the most important subjects.
The method of instruction in the infant school is calculated to preserve the understanding from blind credulity, to invigorate its powers, to associate pleasure with literature, and to induce a laudable desire for progressive improvement; or in other words to connect the substance of instruction with the form of it,- to join the elements of thought with the elements of language,-to
convey substantial information to the infant mind in so pleasing a manner as to arrest the attention, win the affections, elevate the mind, and carry it forward with delight in the paths of science.
The object of instruction in the infant school is not limited to the benefit which may be enjoyed in the present state of existence. It not only considers infants as rational, intelligent beings, endowed with capacities to enjoy and communicate intellectual pleasures; but it views them as destined to an immortal state of existence, of which this life is only the threshold. It views them as subjects of the government of a holy God, and amenable to His tribunal, whose laws are committed to us with the sacred injunction,—Teach them diligently to thy children. That the generations to come may know them, that they may set their hope in God ... and not ... forget the works of God, but keep his commandments.
As the government in the infant school is in some respects peculiar to itself, it is necessary to give this subject particular attention.
It is the first business to imp.ess the pupils with a just sense of right and wrong, and show them the natural effects of each.
They are also taught that they are the creatures of a wise, holy and benevolent God, who loves righteousness and hates iniquity, and will bring every work into judgment; and that God has given us a wise and holy law, to govern our actions, words and thoughts. This law, is a law of love. It requires only such things of us as are necessary for our happiness, and forbids nothing but what would tend to make us miserable. They are shown that God has manifested a great regard for this holy law, by inflicting fearful judgments upon the wicked, and disobedient, as described in the portions of scripture history selected for their lessons.
They are taught the nature of obedience, and shown