National Geographic : 1894 Jan 31
Training of the Imagination. 147 have done our work as we had hoped to do, trained our children to such a degree that, in part at least, they can be lead to under stand maps and texts that describe them. They are now ready for the study of geography as found in the text book. The last group of units constitutes the second circle of geographic work. It should be stated here that during the progress of this tech nical geographic work the children read much of people and of places, of industries, of products and of processes. This reading is made intelligible by the preparation the children have had for it and by the fact that most of it is either exemplified or illustrated in the school-room. The children have articles of clothing brought into the school-room to be examined and to be compared with corresponding articles of their own; they have products, both natural and manufactured, on their desks in abundance, for study, for comparison, for conversation; they have illustrations of fields, of factories, of processes; they study the changed forms of materials, in connection with the processes and machines by which these forms are changed; they compare the crude materials with the marketable materials, and show where the one kind is found, in a package on the grocer's shelf, and name the processes by which the transformation is made. Thus are they made ready, in a further sense, to study the geography of the world and to understand some of the very im portant and valuable facts which the study of geography dis closes to him who knows how to read properly. One purpose of the work thus far has been that of training the imagination of the child. If he goes from home he sees other cities and compares them with his own, for which com parison he has been prepared; he sees hills, valleys, streams, plains and other phenomena, which he interprets by that which he learned in his home study, by comparing the two, If he does not travel from home he takes journeys in imagination, for books are put into his hands for that purpose. He thus, in im agination, visits other cities in distant states. These he finds on river banks or by the seaside. He sees ranges of hills, val leys, mountains, streams, dams, canals, factories; he witnesses processes and examines products, in every step of which com parison is made and conclusions drawn. In this work, too, he is trained to estimate distances by comparing the unknown with the known, thus getting some adequate conception of direction and space.
1894 Feb 14
1893 Jul 10