Hide Articles List

16 articles on this Page








[No title]

leview ot the lirmsli Corn…

Review of the foreign Corn…


[No title]




NEWPORT NATIONAL SCHOOLS. We continue our extracts from the report of the comroissioneis of inquiry into the state of education in Wales, in which we find the following, relative tothe National Schools in this town. Mr. yy/nons says :â These are important schools they are handsomely built, and consist of two large rooms upon the ground floor in the principal street. They aie very capacious, lofty,and airy. I visited them on the 30th of March. These schools are frequently called Nor- ma! and Traiaing-schaols. They, in some measure, serve these purposes, but very imperfectly. Young men and women go for short periods to learn their artâperiods in which it would be scarcely possible to acquire a tolerable knowledge of the easiest han iicrai'f. I am sorry to be compelled to say, that from the examination of the boys, together with my observation of the mode of instruction, I am constrained to think that these schools, as regards the training of masters, and especially, of schoolmis- tresses, arc likely to do as much harm as good. Neither the In- struction given, nor 'he time it lasts, nor the character of the model given, can impart proficiency. On the contrary, they must senJ the pupils away with a mere smattering knowledge of their practical duties, and a very defective notion of the requirements of their office. 1 found few large schools where there was less me!):a! exercise, and if, as is probable, the pupils who leave this school administer still less efficient education, and, nevertheless, are regarded as the offspring of a training-school of reputation, they cannot but disseminate very mischievously-erroneous views, and contribute to degrade the standard opinion which it i< M essential to instruct and raise. Mr. Lingen had mention made t) him, he tells ice, of this school, as a model of some mark. I did nut examine the girls' school, for the Rev. Mr. W ybrow told me that the girls'school was decidedly inferior to the boys'school, and expressed his dissatisfaction with it. The master is apparently a very amiable and kind person, but I believe unable to cope with the adversities which beset him with such a ruffian class of children as compose no inconsiderable portion of his scholars. They come and go perpetually-they learn next to nothing, and keep up a constant counteraction to discipline. Considering the powers of dtaorderatwork against him, I am disposed to think the chief merit of this school is the imperfect degree of discipline which the master nevertheless maintains. As a specimen'of the dispositions he has to struggle with, I may mention that his utmost endeavouis have failed to prevent obscene words from being chalked upon the doors of the sehot.1, often ia a handwriting which shows that the culprits are not confined to the lower classes of the school. Whilst I was t iere, caps were thrown and Icufflas took place whenever the masrer's back was Inrned. An arithmetic lesson was being given when I entered the school; the black board was used, and the sum was 278s. 12, each boy I n rotation giving answers. Ten beys only were in the Ruie of Three. I gave them 99 at 6s. 6d., and one only could work it, and he knew no simpler mode of doing so than by mul- tiplying 6s. 8d. by 11 and 9. In mental arithmetic, 1 only could reduce C65J-, and none 520d. In the Rule of Three, I gave them 54bs. 5,.3,1. 801bs. 801ba.: x. One only succeeded in working tins. The second classwasmuchtessproncieot. Both classes read the 1st and 2nd chapter of the Acti, lbe first class coasistins of 17, and the second of 21 boys. On the first class, all but two could read with ease the whole of the second class, could scarcely r"ad at all-they made perpetual stops and hesita- tions, mispronouncing many of the words. The first class boys were only able to answer very simple questions, and give the meaning of simple words. They repeated the Church Catechism, but, with one or two exceptions, they did not understand tt. An inheritor" tney thought was one who had done good on eaith; others thought it was having possession," and some thought it was bavins; a name." To be baptised was said to be possesl. mj heaven," and "one who lives there." Six could not tell what pomps and vanity were. The articles of the Caristian faith were thought to be faith in God" by some, and others could not tell. Vain meant "outward," "envy," happy," &c. Catholic church," and "resurrection," were understood only by 7 out of the number, and "communion of saints," they all though:, meant II a great many." In spelling, I found less pro. ficiency than u'-na!. Even this path, so extremely well beaten in most schools, was less familiar to the scholars than I have gene- rally found to be the case elsewhere. The result of my trial of the test words was as follows, applied to the first class:âIn I deceive,1' 10"thought the i came tirst, and 6 thought the e came first, In the last syllable. In "believe," 2 thought I he e came tirst, and 13 thought the t came first. The difficult words were â¢spelled wrong as often as right, even by the first class. The second class wtre not very inferior in this respect. The copy boo.s of the first cbss were goodâthose of the second, very in- ferior. The parents, it appears, pay for the copy books them- selves, which is acondition to theirchildrenbeing taught writing. The result of this i", that long intervals constantly elapse between the expira'ion of one copy book and the purchase of another, much to tbe detriment of the scholar's progress. Of geography, even the elder children knew very littleâthe others nothing what- ever. Same few of the boys learn drawing, but the perspectWe was very defective. With the singing I was better pleased. The second dU,.1i were grossly igaoxaut of the meaning of words .â to countenance," tor instance, 5 thought meant man, and 3, a min. A very efficient school in this place would be of great service. No community requires it much more, and the advantage would beappreoatedbytherespectabteinhabitantt. There is a new lk.li..o School under the superintendence of D: ,senter3. The secretary is the Rev. Mr. Bright, the Indepen- dent minister. I went to this school, but it was just closed for the Easter holidnyg. From all I learnt, and from Mr. Jones's report, who had seen it, 1 am disposed to think it promises to be u eful, though it is yet in its infancy. It certainly exhibits, symptom's of intellectual activity. The buildings are very good RISCA SCHOOL. The only day school, except dame-schools, in this parish, was held temporarily in a little chapel belonging to the Wesleyan MeMtodisis ai'liou^h it'profease*'o be a church school. It is a fair soeoimen of the country schools. The master is a poor cripple, nut a man of some capacity. A fewchtldren were scattered about the chaPel-15 couldread in the Bible, but 9 could scarcely read at all. As usual, the mechanical art of reading and writing was all that was taught, except a little authmetic. The children knew very little of the meaning of any thing. They had just been reading the Psalms, which they did w.th more ease than usual. Several of them thought that David lived after Christ hn 1 one or two believed that Chri3t will never come again, and thiee or four only had any notion of the doctrines of salva- tion. WIth a few exceptions, the words they rea conveye no no .ou to their minds whatever. Four thought defend meant t0 pray 11 thought" regard meant t0 feel, and 4 only gave i:s meaning. They spelt much worse lb»°. uis,aa'* only spelt rough rightly, and the rest all spelt it 'D arithmetic they had made more advance. Ona was In the Cube Root, 2 in the Rule of Three, 4 in the Compound Rules, 17 wrote sn copy books. Of all ordinary knowledge they had scarrcel,Y a vestige 4 thought they were living in Africa, and 5 in VV ties. The answers to Which is the largest town in England 1" were < Bristol, Wales, Monmouthshire, and America." One only said London. Seven thought there were 48 weeka in a year, and one only said 52, which several said was wrong, but they had never heard how many there were. My impression, nevertheless, was, thut the master had ability which may be turned to better account. At present, it is not expected that the minds of his scholars should be instructed, and, of course, it is not attempted. The cm ate of theis parish had service to perform, and, conse- quently, could not accompany me to the school. lie mentioned that a better building was in contemplation. COURT-Y-BELLA SCHOOL, The British School, Mynyddystwyn, near Blackwood; Blaina iron Works Schools; the British School at PontMwenydd the Nantyglo School the lown Schools, Pontypoo), &c" Stc., will be noticed in the next week's AISKUN.