Studies in Elementary School Practice: "Motive Behind and Outcome Ahead" in the Sixth Grade
by Frederick G. Bonser & Bertha Gath — 1911
Many of the subjects taught in the elementary schools of today lack worth and interest to boys and girls because they fail to see in these subjects anything worth having or doing, or anything which supplies a felt need either of their own or of the society of which they are a part. In most cases as pupils are not leaving our schools because of necessity but because they have lost all enjoyment and interest in school work. In Massachusetts, the recent Industrial Commission canvassed 3,157 families whose children had left school before the age of 16. Of these 3,157 families, 76 per cent could and would have kept their children in school if they had felt that it was really worth while. And, why is it not really worth while? For the reason there is, especially in higher grades, a lack of motive, of live purpose in studies. Supply it! What happens? Pupils see the school is furnishing studies giving experiences which make for efficiency, studies which supply a real need and a clearer insight into life activities round about. They like school and therefore remain in it longer. In the sixth grade, pupils have been heard to say, "This doesn't seem like school. It's different." "All our studies are so interesting." "Why can't we do this way all the time?"
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