Page images
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

with young folks, that nothing shall peremptorily insisting on points rebe said or done in joke, which would specting which there may be a differbe naughty if in earnest. More la- ence of opinion between them, should titude may be allowed to those who be as accommodating as can be made are grown up: but children cannot consistent with duty; and where a discriminate between what is inno- point cannot be yielded, still the cent in jokes, and what is not; and suaviter in modo should be practised if they could, they have not sufficient with peculiar care, and the necessary steadiness of principle and self-com- duty, performed in a way as little mand to confine themselves within grating and offensive to the parent the proper bounds, if suffered in their who disapproves, as may be. Let moments of gaiety to approach the the more enlightened parent recol. brink of what is wrong. It is of the lect, that an indifferent plan of edugreatest possible importance to pre- cation, in which parents harmoniserve the mind from the taint of ously join, will generally answer cunning and deceit; and therefore much better than a superior one rewe ought to be more anxious to avoid specting which they differ. Besides,

doing too little than too much to se- by kind accommodations, the mis3

cure this point. Simplicity and in- judging parent is often won by de. tegrity of character, the great foun- grees to see things in a more just dation of every thing good, depend light, and to acquiesce in a better sysupon it.

tem. Where both parents acton prin. 6. Do all you can lo secure a con- ciple, and refer to the Bible as their sistency of system in the manage- standard, and do not interpret it in a ment of your children.

very different way, a degree of acIt is quite apparent how indispen- cordance, which will answer pretty sible it is that the father and mother well for practical purposes, may reashould at least not counteract each sonably be expected. The greatest other. If they do not and cannot difficulty arises when one of the

pathink alike on the subject of edu- rents does not act on principle, or cation, by mutual concessions and refers, substantially, to a different accommodations they should pursue standard from the other. Even in a similar plan with their children. these distressing cases, the suuviter Grievous are the

consequences when in modo on a true Christian foundathey proceed differently. The chil- tion will do wonders. It often disdren presume to erect themselves into arms hostility and counteraction, and judges between their parents : they leaves the young family very much play off one against the other. Not in the hands of the parent best quaonly one parent sinks in their esteem, lified to educate it. And I fully bebut they often lose respect for both, lieve, from personal observation, that and are disobedient to both. Thus the Divine blessing rests in an unthe fifth commandment is habitually common degree on the labours of broken; and bad principles and bad a Christian parent so unhappily cirhabits are as likely to be established cumstanced, and fruits follow excelby education in a young family, so lent and abundant beyond all hucircumstanced, as good ones. Let man expectation. With what pleame entreat parents to shun this fatal sure bave I seen a majority of the rock. If one of them is conscious young members of a family, most that the other is best qualified for the lamentably exposed to temptation work of education, let such parent by one parent, snatched out of the duly will allow, and to strengthen constant, but meek and unassuming, the hands of the other. And even labours of the other ! that other, instead of presuming on

In families where the parents prosuperior ability in this line, and car- ceed harmoniously and well in the rying matters with a high hand, and work of education, their plan is

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

often lamentably counteracted in the parents must not trust to being innursery or the school-room. If the formed of every thing important to children are indulged there in bad be known. They must delicately tempers and habits ; and still more, but effectually make the requisite if they there meet with bad exam. inquiries; and also take care by ples; with passion, or pride, or de- personal inspectiou (conducted, how. ceit, or a love of ease and luxury; ever, with kindness and delicacy to all may be undone which is done in the nurse or the governess) to ascerthe parlour, and perhaps more than tain the real state of things. But, undone : notwithstanding all the ef- with all that can be done, it will forts of the pareuts, the progress of seldom be found possible to put the the child may be not in good, but management of children in the nurin evil. Even on the most favoura- sery on a truly good footing. The ble supposition, the fruits produced class of persons to be employed is so by the exertions of the parents, will ill educated and unenlightened; and be scanty and crude. The bias of such of them as are pious are genature will be so in favour of what nerally so injudicious, that not only is wrong, and so against what is the plan of the parent with the child right, ihat, if Divine grace did not will scarcely ever be even tolerably wonderfully favour the exertions of maintained when the child is out of true piety in education, the task of his sight, but positive and serious the parents would be hopeless. How evils will be produced and cherished. carefully, then, should nurses and it is highly important, therefore, others, who are put about children, that the child should be as much be selected? And how attentively with the parent as circumstances will should the course of things in the permit. Every hour in the society nursery and the school-room be of a parent who understands educawatched and regulated ! To this tion, and pays proper attention to end, the nurse or the governess it, is an hour gained to moral im. should be impressed with a sense provement, and (as far at least as of the very high importance which regard children yet in the nursery) the parent attaches to good tempers is too often an hour redeemed from and good habits ; 10 which must be what is far from deserving that apadded, good principles, if the child pellation. In whatever way the is old enough to understand them. child is employed, whether in talkBut it will by no means be sufficient ing or playing, a moral lesson may 10 do this in a general way. It be instilled, moral habits may be enmust be done in detail and by exam- couraged, and bad ones repressed : ple, and with a persevering, but not the parent will continually be oba harassing, recurrence to those taining a greater insight into the points which seem to be not suffi. child's character, and the child ciently understood, or not properly greater affection for its parent. Thas carried into practice. The vigilant good will be doing, and a foundaeye of the parent will always be tion laying for still greater good. wanted to keep things in the right Indeed, God seems to me to afford 09 course, as well as to put them in it slight ground for presuming that at first. It must be laid down as a children should be much with their principle, that nothing must be con. parents, by making the society of cealed by the child. That vile mag- each so pleasant to the other, where im against telling tales out of school the parent performs his part as he (vile, when applied 10 keep parents ought, and ihe child has not been in ignorance) must be utterly.pro- spoiled by excessive indulgence in scribed; and openness and confi. some other quarter. But the eridence must be zealously cultivated, dence of his will, which arises from both in the child and in those who the benefit resulting to the child, and have the charge of him. But the also, I believe, to the parent, from

this intercourse, is irrefragable and nerally the main object of the padecisive.

rent, and his own inclinations are geIt often happens, however, that nerally made to bend to it; yet, in there is an inconsistency in educa- many families, this is by no means lion more to be deplored than any so entirely the case as it ought to

which has yet been mentioned :- be. When the stimulus to self-graE this is the inconsistency of the pa- tification is strong, the parent yields

rent with himself. The author of to it, the rules of good education are the Epistle to the Hebrews, contrast- violated, and the child is injured.

ing the correction ernployed by pa- The injury will be (unless God . rents with that used by the Almighty avert it) in proportion to the ex

in his government of his true ser- tent of this fault. Some portion of vants, says, " They” (the parents) it is found in all parents : but I am “ verily for a few days chastened speaking not of a few thinly scatus after their own pleasure, but tered instances rarely occurring, he for our profit, that we might such as must be expected from so be partakers of his holiness.” What weak a creature as man even in his a picture is this ! God, the sovereign best estate, but of its more frequent proprietor of all his creatures, inva- recurrence, to the serious interrupriably pursues the good of those tion of a good system of education. whom he deigns to call his sons, in Now it is clear that this fault, in all the discipline to which he sub- whatever degree it may exist, is an jects them; while man, who can enemy to consistency of conduct. call nothing his own, who is a mere As it proceeds from the parent trustee under the Almighty, who, yielding to a different motive from in his conduct towards his children, that which ought to actuate him, should always bear in mind that both and sometimes at least does actuate they and he are bought with a him, when with his children ; this price, and that not his own grati- new motive must lead to different refication, but the will of God, should sults from those which would flow be his rule in all he does as a father, from the other, and produce incoile man presumes to forget his imperi- sistency. But this is by no means ous duties in education, and to make all. A man under the influence of it bis object to please himself rather self-indulgence is inconsistent with than his sovereign Lord ! If one did himself. He will conduct himself not continually see the fact, one towards his child according to his should not believe it possible that present humour. One hour he will the work of education would be so be indulgent, and the next severe : often carried on under the supreme at one time he will allow his child to influence of selfishness. His own do things, which at another he will ease and convenience, and the in- forbid. The child also will find out dulgence of his own feeling and hu- that he can carry points by managemour, frequently seem to engage ment;-by making his request when a father's first attention in his pro- the parent is in a yielding humour, or ceedings with his children; and, ex- by bringing bim into such a humour cept in striking cases, which oblige by coaxing and wheedling, or by him, as it were, to depart from so overcoming his objections by imlas a system, the good of the child portunity. Inconsistency must be is clearly made in practice, though the consequence : and an inconsisnot in theory, a secondary object. tency the more to be deplored, beSo true is the description of the cause it will be connected with a apostie : he proceeds according to diminution of respect for the parent bis own pleasure, rather than for who is the author of it, and with the the profit of his children. When practice of cunning and art in the education is not conducted so very child,- habits of mind most adverse ill, and the good of the child is ge- 10 all that is good. Christ. OBSERV, No. 119.

4 X

often lamentably counteracted in the parents must not trust to being innursery or the school-room. If the formed of every thing important to children are indulged there in bad be known. They must delicately tempers and habits; and still more, but effectually make the requisito if they there meet with bad exam. inquiries; and also take care by ples; with passion, or pride, or de- personal inspection (conducted, how. ceit, or a love of ease and luxury; ever, with kindness and delicacy to all may be undone which is done in the nurse or the governess) to ascere the parlour, and perhaps more than tain the real state of things. But, undone : notwithstanding all the efą with all that can be done, it will forts of the parents, the progress of seldom be found possible to put the the child may be not in good, but management of children in the nurin evil. Even on the most favoura- sery on a truly good footing. The ble supposition, the fruits produced class of persons to be employed is so by the exertions of the parents, will ill educated and unenlightened; and be scanly and crude. The bias of such of them as are pious are genature will be so in favour of what nerally so injudicious, that not only is wrong, and so against what is the plan of the parent with the child right, that, if Divine grace did not will scarcely ever be even tolerably wonderfully favour the exertions of maintained when the child is out of true piety in education, the task of his sight, but positive and serious the parents would be hopeless. How evils will be produced and cherished. carefully, then, should nurses and It is highly important, tberefore, others, who are put about children, that the child should be as mueb be selected ? And how attentively with the parent as circumstances will should the course of things in the permit. Every hour in the society nursery and the school-room be of a parent who understands educawatched and regulated ! To this tion, and pays proper attention to end, the nurse or the governess it, is an hour gained to moral inshould be impressed with a sense provement, and (as far at least as of the very high importance which regard children yet in the nursery) the parent attaches' io good tempers is too often an hour redeemed from and good habits ; 10 which must be what is far from deserving that apadded, good principles, if the child pellation. In whatever way the is old enough to understand them. child is employed, whether in talkBut it will by no means be sufficient ing or playing, a moral lesson may 10 do this in a general way. It be instilled, moral habits may be enmust be done in detail and by exam. couraged, and bad ones repressed : ple, and with a persevering, but not the parent will continually be oba harassing, recurrence to those taining a greater insight into the points which seem to be not suffi. child's character, and the child ciently understood, or not properly greater affection for its parent. Thus carried into practice. The vigilant good will be doing, and a foundaeye of the parent will always be tion laying for still greater good. wanted to keep things in the right Indeed, God seems to me to afford oo course, as well as to put them in it slight ground for presuming that at first. It must be laid down as a children should be much with their principle, that nothing must be con- parents, by making the society of cealed by the child. That vile max- each so pleasant to the other, where im against telling tales out of school the parent performs his part as he (vile, when applied 10 keep parents ought, and ihe child has not been in ignorance) must be utterly pro- spoiled by excessive indulgence in scribed; and openness and confi- some other quarter. But the evidence must be zealously cultivated, dence of his will, which arises from both in the child and in those who the benefit resulting to the child, and have the charge of him. But the also, I believe, to the parent, from

this intercourse, is irrefragable and nerally the main object of the padecisive.

rent, and his own inclinations are geIt often happens, however, that nerally made to bend to it; yet, in there is an inconsistency in educa- many families, this is by no means tion more to be deplored than any so entirely the case as it ought to which has yet been mentioned :- be. When the stimulus to self-grathis is the inconsistency of the pa- tification is strong, the parent yields rent with himself. The author of to it, the rules of good education are the Epistle to the Hebrews, contrast- violated, and the child is injured. ing the correction employed by pa- The injury will be (unless God rents with that used by the Almighty avert it) in proportion to the exin his government of his true ser- tent of this fault. Some portion of fapts, says, “ They” (the parents) it is found in all parents : but I am " Ferily for a few days chastened speaking not of a few thinly scatus after their own pleasure, but tered instances rarely occurring, he for our profit, that we might such as must be expected from so be partakers of his holiness.” What weak a creature as man even in his a picture is this ! God, the sovereign best estate, but of its more frequent proprietor of all his creatures, inva- recurrence, to the serious interrupriably pursues the good of those tion of a good system of education. whom be deigns to call his sons, in Now it is clear that this fault, in all the discipline to which he sub- whatever degree it may exist, is an jects them; while man, who can enemy to consistency of conduct. call nothing his own, who is a mere As it proceeds from the parent trustee under the Almighty, who, yielding to a different motive from in his conduct towards his children, ihat which ought to actuate him, should always bear in mind that both and sometimes at least does actuate they and he are bought with a him, when with his children ; this price, and that not his own grati- new motive must lead to different refication, but the will of God, should sults from those which would flow be his rule in all he does as a father, from the other, and produce inconman presumes to forget his imperi- sistency. But this is by no means ous duties in education, and to make all. A man under the influence of it bis object to please himself rather self-indulgence is inconsistent with iban his sovereign Lord ! If one did himself. He will conduct himself not continually see the fact, one towards his child according to his should not believe it possible that present humour. One hour he will the work of education would be so be indulgent, and the next severe: often carried on under the supreme at one time he will allow his child to influence of selfishness. His own do things, which at another he will ease and convenience, and the in- forbid. The child also will find out dolgence of his own feeling and hu- that he can carry points by managemour, frequently seem to engage ment;—by making his request when a father's first attention in his pro- the parent is in a yielding humour, or ceedings with his children; and,'ex- by bringing bim into such a humour cept in striking cases, wbich oblige by coaxing and wheedling, or by bim, as it were, to depart from so overcoming his objections by im. lax a system, the good of the child portunity. Inconsistency must be is clearly made in practice, though the consequence : and an inconsis

theory, a secondary object. tency the more to be deplored, beSo true is the description of the cause it will be connected with a apostie : be proceeds according to diminution of respect for the parent bis own pleasure, ratber than for who is the author of it, and with the the profit of his children. When practice of cuvning and art in the education is not conducted so very child,-habits of mind most adverse ill, and the good of the child is ge to all that is good. Christ. OBSERV. No. 119.

4 X

« PreviousContinue »