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JOURNAL OF EDUCATION:

SPECIALLY DESIGNED AS A

#ithium of Corresponnenre

AMong the

HEADS OF TRAINING COLLEGES, PAROCHIAL CLERGYMEN, AND ALL
PROMOTERS OF SOUND EDUCATION, PARENTS, SPONSORS,
SCHOOLMASTERS, PUPIL TEACHERS, SUNDAY-
SCHOOL TEACHERS, ETC.

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PARIS AND ITS SCHOOLS UNDER THE REPUBLIC. BY AN EYE-WITNESS,

Rev. SIR,--I readily comply with your request that I should furnish you with some succinct account of my visit to Paris and its schools under the Republic. As soon as the great popular outbreak of February last had been announced, I determined to take an early opportunity of making a personal inquiry into the moral causes to which it might be referred. I wished to learn from actual observation how far that admonitory movement was due to the pernicious influence of mere state education, carried on apart from all religious control, and often in direct antagonism to the church of the land; and how far the Church of Rome, by her despotical demands, had been the cause of the schism between church and state in education? Subordinately to this inquiry, I was anxious to learn what education (if any) the young men had received who enrolled themselves in such vast numbers in the “Garde Mobile,” when that corps was first formed, and who seemed, at the most critical o of human life, to have so little regard for their own ives and the lives of others, and such an utter absence of all dread of blood-guiltiness; and what schools (if any) had received the strangely wicked, the almost diabolical, lads who are known by the name of “Gamins de Paris.” This point I wanted to know, on account of its bearing upon the organization and extension of Ragged Schools in our own country. It seemed also desirable that one should make oneself acquainted with the works on Method and Paedagogy, recently published in France, and with the expedients of instruction adopted in primary and secondary schools, especially text-books, maps, diagrams, &c. In these it might be expected that the national ingenuity would find ample scope, and I hoped to derive many useful hints from them for the improvement of elementary education at home. It appeared also important that the English public, at a time when their attention is so strongly directed to the whole subject of education, should receive some fresh information concerning VOL. VII,-NO. I. A

the normal colleges of their neighbours; and I proposed to myself questions on various subjects which I intended to propound to the managers of those institutions with whom I might . come in contact, and of which the following queries relative to arithmetic and mathematics may be taken as a specimen :Upon what system is arithmetic taught ! Do you teach mental arithmetic ; Are you acquainted with Pestalozzi's method of teaching mental arithmetic. To what extent do you teach algebra ! What is your textbook on this subject 2 . your course of mechanics do you employ the principle of WOrk s What proof do you give of the parallelogram of forces ! What course of demonstrative geometry do you give : Do you adopt any part of Euclid's course ? Are any of your students taught the differential and integral calculus ! What is your text-book on physical geography 2 Does chemistry form a part of your course of instruction? What is the nature of your course on natural philosophy : Do you teach the principles of mathematical perspective, in connexion with your course of model drawing? Do you give any instruction in descriptive geometry : If so, what is your text-book? Do you teach isometrical perspective 2 If so, what is your text-book 2 What kind of instruction do you give on mechanism 2 Do you teach from models or drawings? In what manner do you give your mathematical lessons— whether in the form of lectures or individual instruction ? According to this plan, I set out from London to Dover, by the mail train. On reaching that ancient town, the Brundusium of English travellers, I found that the mail steam-packet about to sail to Boulogne was lying in the roads, and that we could only reach her by going in a wherry boat from the shore. After a rapid run through the town, about twelve of us found ourselves in a strong boat which rested on the shingle, while four oarsmen and a steersman took their places “fore and aft.” On a given signal a number of their companions pushed the boat into the surf, and after two or three plunges, which covered us with spray, we were rapidly moving towards the packet. I am not surprised that sailors are superstitious. The black night, the boiling waters, the phosphoric light that seemed to glance from the oars; the distant and spectral shape of the steam-boat—all roused the imagination. The crested waves looked every now and then like the countenances of friends in distress. We were soon safe on board the steamboat; and the

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