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Do Readers Read?   Those who are interested in the proper use of our libraries are asking continually, “What do readers read?” and the tables of class-percentages in the annual reports of those institutions show that librarians are at least making an attempt to satisfy these queries. But a question that is still more fundamental and quite as vital is: Do readers read at all? This is not a paradox, but a common-sense question,... more...

Gentlemen of the Canadian Club:—Your president has asked me to address you this afternoon in the English language. It is with great pleasure that I received this invitation and that I avail myself of the privilege of speaking to you in that language with regard to the very troublesome, somewhat distorted, and certainly much misrepresented school question in your sister province. First of all, I wish to assure you that I shall not make a... more...

PREFACE The student of general problems of education or of elementary education finds an extensive literature of varying worth. In the last decade our secondary schools have undergone radical reorganization and have assumed new functions. A rich literature on every phase of the high school is rapidly developing to keep pace with the needs and the progress of secondary education. The literature on college education in general and college pedagogy... more...

This collection of scattered thoughts and observations has little order or continuity; it was begun to give pleasure to a good mother who thinks for herself. My first idea was to write a tract a few pages long, but I was carried away by my subject, and before I knew what I was doing my tract had become a kind of book, too large indeed for the matter contained in it, but too small for the subject of which it treats. For a long time I hesitated... more...

INTRODUCTION The four essays on education which Herbert Spencer published in a single volume in 1861 were all written and separately published between 1854 and 1859. Their tone was aggressive and their proposals revolutionary; although all the doctrines—with one important exception—had already been vigorously preached by earlier writers on education, as Spencer himself was at pains to point out. The doctrine which was comparatively... more...


"As the twelve tribes had many interests in common, and, in some respects, formed but one political body, the magistrates of all the tribes met in general assemblies to consult for the good of the nation." Jahn's History of the Hebrew Commonwealth. Whoever regards the state of our community in this country, must come to the conclusion, that we have arrived at an important period, when we can no longer defer the consideration of matters of... more...

CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION—THE PRESENT UNREST IN EDUCATION The problems as to the end or ends at which our educational agencies should aim in the training and instruction of the children of the nation, and of the right methods of attaining these ends once they have been definitely and clearly recognised, are at the present day receiving greater and greater attention not only from professed educationalists, but also from statesmen and the... more...

THE CHIEF AIM OF EDUCATION. What is the central purpose of education? If we include under this term all the things commonly assigned to it, its many phases as represented by the great variety of teachers and pupils, the many branches of knowledge and the various and even conflicting methods in bringing up children, it is difficult to find a definition sufficiently broad and definite to compass its meaning. In fact we shall not attempt in the... more...

CHAPTER I. There was joy in the Weaver household when the child was born, and when it had been duly announced that it was a boy. The event was the first of the kind in this particular branch of the Weaver family, and, as is always the case, there was such rejoicing as does not come with the recurrence of like episodes. A man hardly feels sure of his manhood till the magic word father is put in the vocative case and applied to him direct, and the... more...

I To what a great extent men are ruled by pure hazard, and how little reason itself enters into the question, is sufficiently shown by observing how few people have any real capacity for their professions and callings, and how many square pegs there are in round holes: happy and well chosen instances are quite exceptional, like happy marriages, and even these latter are not brought about by reason. A man chooses his calling before he is fitted... more...