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Norman Allison Calkins.

Manual of object-teaching : with illustrative lessons in methods and the science of education online

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given without text-books, but they must be made up from
actual observations and experience of the pupils.

The following lessons are intended only to explain the
manner of conducting this oral training, and not as some-
thing to be taught to the pupils.

2*



34 MANUAL OF OBJECT-TEACHING.



TO DEVELOP IDEAS OF PLACE.

FIRST SERIES OF EXERCISES.

First Exercise. Teach the children to distinguish the
right and left hands ; right and left arms, elbows, shoulders, ears,
eyes, cheeks, feet, and various objects to the right and to the left
of the pupils. In doing this the teacher may ask :

Which is your right hand ? "Which is your left hand ? Hold
your book in your right hand. Take your book in your left hand.
Who sits at your right side ? Who sits at your left side ? What
things can you see on the left side of the room ? What things can
you see on the right side of the room ? Stand on your right foot.
Rest on your left foot.

When the children can readily distinguish right and left posi-
tions, they may be led to understand the terms front, back, rear,
before, behind, above, over, below, under, by the side of, etc. This
can be accomplished by holding a book or other object above
the table, below it, by the side of it, to the left of it, before it,
etc., and requesting the pupils to tell, in each instance, where the
object is held.

Second Exercise. Place three objects on a table in front
of the class one on each end, and one in the middle of the ta-
ble; as a cupj a book, and a slate. Then require the pupils to
observe and tell where each object is located, thus :

The cup is in the middle of the table. The book is on the right-
hand end. The slate is on the left-hand end of the table.

'When several of the pupils have described the position of
the objects, each may be changed to another place, and the pu-
pils requested to describe the new location. Afterward all the
objects may be removed, and different pupils called upon to place



ILLUSTRATED LESSONS PLACE. 35

theni in their former positions. Then they may be required to
place them as directed, thus :

Place the cup on the nearest right-hand corner. Place the book
on the farthest left-hand corner, etc.

Third Exercise. Place four objects on the table, and re-
quest different pupils to describe the position of each, as in the
last exercise.

Remove the objects, and then let the pupils place them in the
positions which they occupied when described.

Afterward let pupils go to the table, singly as called upon, and
each place an object in a position as described by the teacher.

Continue these exercises, as before, with five objects.

During the preceding exercises the several pupils should be al-
lowed to take an active part in each until they have become suf-
ficiently familiar with position, or place, to be able to distinguish
the position of several objects, and to replace them after they
have been removed.

Representing Position. When the pupils are able to
describe the position of objects, and to place them in position
from descriptions, and to replace them from memory, they may
be taught to represent their positions on the blackboard and on
slates.

Having placed three objects on the table so that one stands in
the centre, one in the front right-hand corner, one in the back
left-hand corner the teacher may show the pupils how to repre-
sent the surface of the table on the blackboard, and the position
of each object on it, somewhat in the following manner :

I wish to draw lines on the blackboard to represent the sides
and ends of this table or its boundaries, so that you will see there
the shape of its surface ; also to place marks to show the position
of each object on the table. I wish to represent the position of the
table and these objects, just as they would appear to you were I to
take up the top of the table and place it against the blackboard, as
I now take up this slate and place it against the blackboard.

Teacher. Now please tell me where I shall draw the line to rep-
resent the back edge of the table.

Pupils. Across the blackboard, above the middle.



36 MANUAL OF OBJECT-TEACHING.

Teacher. Where shall I draw the line to represent the front edge
of the table ?

Pupils. Across the blackboard, below the middle.

T. Where shall I draw the line to represent the left end of the table ?

P. From the upper to the lower line, near the left side of the
blackboard.

T. Where shall I draw the line to represent the right end of the
table ?

P. From the upper to the lower line, near the right side of the
blackboard.

T. Now we have the shape of the surface of the table represent-
ed, who can tell me where to make marks to show the position of
the book on the table ?

P. Make them at the right side, near the lower corner.

T. Where shall I make marks to show the position of this cube
on the table ?

P. Make a small square in the centre of the drawing on the
blackboard.

T. Where shall I make marks to show the position of the bell on
the table ?

P. Make a circle at the left side, near the upper corner.

The teacher will please notice that in each case the
pupils are called to observe and describe, and thus direct
what the teacher shall do. The teacher must see that the
pupils do their own part of the observing, thinking, and
describing, while he represents what they describe, and
also requires them to determine whether or not the rep-
resentation is correct.

After two or three representations of the surface of
the table, with the position of three or more objects upon
it, have thus been drawn on the blackboard, the pupils
may make a copy of the representation upon their slates.
They may also be called to locate the objects in the draw-
ing upon the blackboard, and to represent their positions
on the table.

These exercises will prepare the pupils for understand-
ing the use of maps when instruction in elementary ge-
ography is commenced.



ILLUSTRATED LESSONS PLACE. 37



SECOND SERIES OF EXERCISES.

First Exercise. Lead the pupils to describe the location
of several objects in the school-room, somewhat after this manner :

The door is in the left-hand corner of the room.

The windows are on the right-hand side of the room.

The stove is in the centre of the room.

The teacher's desk is in the front part of the room.

The chair is back of the teacher's desk.

The closet is at the right of the desk.

The teacher may also ask questions similar to the following :

Where is the ceiling of this room ? Where is the blackboard ?
What room is nearest this ? What room on the left of this ? What
room back of this ? How many class-rooms are there on this floor ?

Represent the shape of this room on the blackboard, and the
position of the prominent objects in the room that occupy space
on the floor. Let pupils copy the representation on their slates.

Second Exercise. Request the pupils to draw on their
slates the boundaries of the class-room, and represent the posi-
tion of the objects in it from their own observation.

Third Exercise. Let the pupils draw the outline shape
of one floor of the school building, an*d represent the location of
the several rooms on the floor.

Other Exercises. Talk with the pupils about the differ-
ent kinds of rooms at home, and encourage them to make draw-
ings of single rooms, also of several rooms of a house, as kitchen,
dining-room, pantry, hall, parlor, bedroom, etc.

Encourage the pupils to represent the location of objects about
the school-house, as streets, yards, etc.



38 MANUAL OF OBJECT-TEACHING.



TO DEVELOP IDEAS OF DIRECTION.

First Exercise Simple Direction. The first lesson
may be a simple one of direction alone. Request the children to
point toward objects in the school-room ; then toward the streets
near, as each is named by the teacher ; also toward the nearest
house, store, church, railroad, river, pond, canal, mountain, hill,
village, etc.

Of course the location of the school, and the objects surround-
ing it, must determine what the teacher will ask the pupils to
point at.

Second Exercise To Show the Necessity of
Fixed Points of Direction. For the accomplishment of
this purpose the teacher might say to the pupils: "When I
asked you about the position of different objects in this room,
you said that one of them was located at your right hand, an-
other one at your left hand, and so on. Now observe where I
stand, and tell me which w!iy I must walk to go to the door."

" You must go toward the right."

After turning half-way around, the teacher says, "Now must I
go to the right to find the door ?"

" No, the door is behind you."

Turning half around again, the teacher asks, " Must I go to the
right, now, to find the door?"

" No, the door is in front of you."

"Thus you see that you must know where and how the per-
son stands before you can direct him, by the use of the terms
right or left, which way he must go to find any given object.
Suppose a person should inquire the way to the post-office, could
you inform him by saying ' Go toward the right,' if you did not



ILLUSTRATED LESSONS DIRECTION. 39

see whether his right hand was on the side toward the post-
office?

" You perceive that it would be very difficult to direct people
where distant objects and places may be found without having
some fixed points of direction which all understand. There are
such fixed points commonly known, and these I propose to teach
you in the next lesson."

Third Exercise Points of Compass. You may point
in the direction in which you see the sun at noon. Very well. At
noon the sun is in the south. Now point toward the south.

Point in the direction in which you see the sun in the morning.
We say the sun rises in the morning, &nd..sets in the evening. Now
point to the place where the sun rises. Now point to the place
where the sun sets.

The place where the sun rises is called the east. You may point
toward the east.

The place where the sun sets is called the west. You may point
toward the west.

What can you see in this room that is east of you ?

What can you see that is west of you ?

John, you may walk in this room toward the east.

James, you may walk toward the west.

My bedroom has windows on one side of it. In the morning,
when the sun rises, it shines in at my windows. On which side of
the house is my bedroom ? On which side of my room are the
windows ?

Does the sun shine into your bedroom in the morning ?

Through which window in the school-room will the sun shine in
the morning ? Through which in the afternoon ?

As I was walking the other day, I saw the sun before me, appear-
ing like a very large red ball, sinking behind the hills. In what
direction must I have been walking ?

At the close of the lesson the children may repeat :

The place where the sun rises is called the east. The place where the
sun sets is called the west. The place where we see the sun at noon is
called south.

Fourth Exercise Points of Compass. You may
point toward the east. Point toward the west. You may now
point in the direction in which you see the sun at noon. What



40 MANUAL OF OBJECT-TEACHING.

is the place called where the sun is seen at noon? You may
point toward the south.

The class may stand with backs toward the south, and right
hands toward the east. Now the direction in front of you is called
the north. You may point toward the north.

Point toward the west with your left hand.

Turn your face toward the south. Now point toward the east
with your left hand, and toward the west with your right hand.

Once more stand with your right hand toward the east and your

left hand toward the west. The point before you is called ,*

and the point behind you is called the .* The point at your

right hand is .* The point at your left hand is .*

Four pupils may now be called upon to walk, in the school-room,
in the direction of the four points of compass. Let each pupil be
required to tell, before returning to his seat, in what direction he
walked, also in what direction he must go to return to his seat.

The class may stand facing the north. Now point in the direc-
tion between north and east. The point between north and east is
called north-east.

Now point in the direction between north and west. The point
between north and west is called north-west.

The class may face toward the south. Now point in the direction
between south and east. The point between south and east is called
south-east. Point toward the south-east.

Point in the direction between south and west. The point be-
tween south and west is called south-west. Point toward the south-
west.

The class may now point as I name the direction : south ; south-
west; south-east; east; north; north-east; north -west; west;
south-west; north-east; south-east; north; south; etc.

When the members of the entire class are thus called to point
simultaneously, it is necessary to train them to be self-reliant, and
to point without waiting to see how their class-mates do. To
secure this independent action of each pupil let the teacher point
at the same time in a different direction from the one given to
the class, thus :

Teacher says, "Point to the east;" but at the same time the
teacher points toward the south. Teacher says, " Point toward the



* Let the children supply the ellipsis.



ILLUSTRATED LESSONS DIRECTION. 41

north," but points toward the west. Teacher says, "Point toward
the south-east," but points toward the south-west.

By this means the children soon learn to point toward the
direction named, regardless of the way in which others point.

This plan will materially aid in training the pupils to know all
the points of the compass with certainty, and also is suitable for
rapidly reviewing large classes in this subject.

"Boxing the Compass." Beside the eight points of
compass, already named, there are eight others, making sixteen
altogether. All of these are used by sailors. A sailor is said to
be able to "Box the Compass" when he can name these sixteen
points in their order, thus :

North, north-north-east, north-east, east-north-east, east, east-south-
east, south-east, south -south -east, south, south -south -west, south-
west, west-south-west, west, west-north-west, north-west, north-north-
west.

Fifth Exercise. When the pupils have learned to point
out and name each of the eight directions commonly known as
" the points of compass," let them be required to apply this
knowledge in stating the directions of objects in the vicinity of
the school.

Let them tell what direction different members of the class
must take in coming to school, also what directions must be
taken by them in going home.

Suppose you were walking toward the north in the morning, over
which shoulder would you look for the sun ? Which way would
you look for the sun if walking north in the afternoon ? Suppose
you were walking toward the sun at noon, in what direction would
you be gping ?

Does a street cross the one which passes by the school -room ?
In what direction does it run ? Which way from us is that street ?
Do any of you live on it ? If you were going home, in what direc-
tions would you go ?



42 MANUAL OF OBJECT-TEACHING.



TO DEVELOP IDEAS OF DISTANCE.

IN the natural modes of learning, children take notice of dis-
tance as well as of direction. This, therefore, becomes an im-
portant item in the elementary steps of instruction preparatory
to lessons in geography. Inasmuch as the subjects of " Size,"
" Length," " Measure," " Distance," etc., have been presented in
"Primary Object Lessons" [on pages 261-281], the teacher will
do well to examine what is said there relative to the more ele-
mentary steps in the presentation of these subjects, and espe-
cially the suggestions pertaining to "Distance" [on page 275].

In addition to the lessons there presented, it is also desirable
that the teacher should give a few exercises which will cause the
pupils to associate ideas of direction and distance as their at-
tention is given to familiar objects, places, etc., in the vicinity
of the school-house, during these lessons introductory to geog-
raphy.

First Exercise Naming Relative Distances. Re-
quest the pupils to name two streets running the same way, and
tell which is more distant. Let them name the pupils that live
nearest to the school in the same direction from it, also those
that live most distant. Let them name streams, hills, ponds,
orchards, fields, etc., that are near, and those that are distant.
Let them also name objects, buildings, or places that are in dif-
ferent directions from the school, and tell which are nearer and
which more distant. Let them mention places that are about
half a mile distant, also those that are a mile distant, etc.

Representing Relative Distances^ The teacher may
now represent on the blackboard the direction and relative dis-
tances of several of the objects, places, etc., named, and then re-
quest the pupils to copy these on their slates. Afterward the



ILLUSTRATED LESSONS DISTANCE. 43

pupils may be requested to represent on their slates the direc-
tion and relative distances of other places, as the teacher names
them.

The pupils may represent the location of the school-room near
the centre of their slates ; then draw lines to represent the streets
that pass the school.

Direct the pupils to write North at the top of the slate, South at
the bottom, East at the right-hand side, West at the left-hand side.
Then request them to represent the objects, places, etc., that are
north of the school, in their relative positions toward the top of the
slate ; then the places that are south of the school toward the bot-
tom of the slate ; and those east of the school toward the right-hand
side ; and those west of the school toward the left-hand side.

Similar exercises may be continued, as the condition and prog-
ress of the class seem to demand. These will be interesting from
the fact that they furnish the children with something to do, and
will aid in preparing them to understand the representations by
maps.

Such lessons may be extended so as to embrace all prominent
objects and places within the personal observation of the pupils ;
as churches, school-houses, villages, railroad, depot, river, manu-
factory, lake, mountain, mine, etc., even though several miles
may be included in the distances.



44 MANUAL OF OBJECT-TEACHING.



TO DEVELOP IDEAS OF BOUNDARIES AND MAPS.

Teacher. I will now try to make a drawing or map of this room
on the blackboard, and I wish you to tell me where to place lines
to represent the different parts of it. First I will tell you some im-
portant facts which must be remembered when drawing a map of
any place :

The marks representing the north part, side, or end of the object
must be placed at the top of the blackboard or slate, and those rep-
resenting the south part at the bottom of the board ; those repre-
senting the east at the right-hand side; those representing the west
at the left-hand side.

I will write the words North, South, East, West, on the top, bottom,
and sides of the blackboard to help you in remembering what I
have just told you.

Now where shall I draw a line to represent the north end of this
room ?

Pupils. Near the top of the blackboard. [The teacher then draws
a horizontal line near the top of the blackboard.]

T. Where must I make a line to represent the south end of this
room ?

P. Near the bottom of the blackboard. [The teacher draws a
line in the proper position.]

T. Point toward the east side of the room. Where shall I draw
a line to represent that side ?

P. On the right-hand side of the blackboard. [The teacher
draws a vertical line on the right-hand side, so as to connect the
two horizontal lines previously made.]

T. Point toward the west side of this room. Where shall I draw
a line to represent that side ?

P. On the left-hand side of the blackboard. [The teacher makes
the line in its proper position.]

T. What shape do these four lines form ?

P. An oblong, or parallelogram.

T. Now observe and tell me in which direction this room is
longer. Does the drawing on the blackboard represent the room
longer from north to south than from east to west ? Now take your
slates and copy the drawing, which I made to represent this room,
on your slates.



ILLUSTRATED LESSONS BOUNDARIES AND MAPS. 45

Where did you make the line to represent the north end of the
room ? On what part of your slate did you draw the line to repre-
sent the east side of the room ?

Now tell me what part of the room these four lines represent.
Have we drawn anything to show where the door and windows
are ? Look at the door and then tell me in which part of the room
it is.

Pupils. The door is in the north end of the room, near the west
side.

Teacher. Then where shall I make marks to show the position of
the door ?

Look at the windows and tell me where they are. Where shall I
make marks to show the position of the windows in this room ?

We now have a drawing of the walls of this room, and the places
for the door and windows marked. Now you may place marks
in the drawings on your slates to show where the door and win-
dows are.

Next we will make marks to show where my desk stands ; then
some for the stove ; then some to represent the places for your seats.

Thus proceed until the drawing on the blackboard represents
the positions of the principal objects in the room, and then re-
quire the pupils to copy the same on their slates.

It might be well to draw an outline of the school-room on the
floor with chalk, then to select objects to represent the different
articles of furniture, and request the pupils to place them in their
relative positions within this drawing.

Boundaries. Teacher. What parts of the room do the lines
which I drew on the blackboard to show the shape of this room
represent ?

Pupils. The walls of the room.

T. How many walls has this room ? Then this room has a wall
on each of its four sides. These walls are the boundaries of the
room ; they fix its size. How many walls bound this room ? How
did I represent these walls, or boundaries, on the blackboard ?

P. By four lines.

T. You say that the walls bound a room ; now if you should see a
yard with a fence on each of its sides, what would you say bounds
the yard ?

P. The fence.

T. Yes, the fences around yards, or the fences or stone walla



4:6 MANUAL OF OBJECT-TEACHING.

around fields bound the yards or fields. In the city a square, or
block, is bounded by streets. So if you wish to make a map or
drawing of a field, you must draw lines to represent its fences ; if
you wish to make a map of a block or square in the city, you must
draw lines to represent the streets that surround it.

Play-groTinds. For the next lesson the teacher may show
the pupils, as before, how to draw a plan or map of the play-
grounds, or school-yard. The teacher may talk with the pupils,
and question them somewhat as follows, but of course adapting
the conversation to the circumstances, objects, etc., which sur-
round the school :

You have learned about the school -room, and how to make a
drawing of it on your slates ; now we will make a drawing of the
play-ground and of the street. Which way from the school-room is
the play-ground ? Which way is the street ? Where shall I draw
the line to represent the north end of the play-ground ? Where the
line for the south end ?

Proceed in a similar manner with all the lines for the boundaries ;
then locate the objects of the play-ground, as the swing, the place
for ball-playing, etc.

Where is the street ? " In front of the school-room." In what
direction does it extend ? " North and south," or " cast and west,"
as the case may be. Do any of you live on this street ? Which way
is your home from the school-room ? Which one of you, who does
not live on this street, goes along it on his way home from school ?

Now let us draw this street on the board. You said this street
was in front of the school-room ; now will you tell me which way
the front is? "West." Then the street passes along the west side
of the school-room. In what directions did you tell me it extended ?
If it extends north and south, how must I place the lines on the
board to represent it ? " You must draw them from the top to the
bottom." Now draw them on your slates.

Does any street cross the one which passes by the school-room?
In what direction does that run ? Which way from us is that street ?
Do any of you live on it ? If you were going home, in what direc-
tion would you go ? How shall I represent it on the board ?

Similar questions may be asked about all the principal streets



Online LibraryNorman Allison CalkinsManual of object-teaching : with illustrative lessons in methods and the science of education → online text (page 3 of 35)