Imágenes de páginas

how limited the subject is not the title. The author does not attempt to describe the game; he singles out one man and admires him as he stands ready for the opponent and then rushes to the attack. If you are interested in football, and will read the lines aloud with the vigor they demand, you can hardly fail to enjoy them.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


If I could paint you, friend, as you stand there,
Guard of the goal, defensive, open-eyed,
Watching the tortured bladder slide and glide
Under the twinkling feet; arms bare, head bare,
The breeze a-tremble through crow-tufts of hair;
Red-brown in face, and ruddier having spied
A wily foeman breaking from the side;
Aware of him, of all else unaware:

If I could limn you, as you leap and fling
Your weight against his passage, like a wall;
Clutch him, and collar him, and rudely cling
For one brief moment till he falls
you fall:
My sketch would have what Art can never give —
Sinew and breath and body; it would live.

[ocr errors][merged small]

If you were to make a piece of sculpture, how much of this material could you use? How much, if you were to paint the picture? Does the writer have any advantages over the painter and the sculptor?

It is probably evident that, as a rule, a composition is more likely to be interesting if the subject is so limited that the treatment may be full. Now and then a brief outline of a large subject may be valuable, but usually the narrower the subject the more likely are we to make our

account of it readable. The following list, taken from a pupil's notebook, shows how easy it is to find such subjects:

[blocks in formation]


15. Rewrite five of the titles in section 8, page 8, so that a small part of the subject may be discussed fully.

16. Rewrite five of the titles so that the treatment will cover only a brief interval of time.

17. The following diagram indicates some of the steps by which we may narrow, or limit, a large subject until it becomes suitable for short compositions. By this means it is often possible to find a large amount and variety of material where we thought there was none.

Develop further some of the topics in the diagram that most interest you. Thus, make the topics under "walking in the country," or "walking in the city," fit your own locality or some place you have visited, or your favorite season.

18. Work out a complete diagram of your own on one of the following general subjects: games, books, magazines, electricity, cooking, travel, buildings, birds, flowers, occupations.

[blocks in formation]

19. Make a list of prominent buildings, and in discussing them in class show how subjects for writing or talking multiply if you take pains to make the most of your material.

If, for example, you consider the public library, you may describe the entrance, a room, a picture, a bookcase, or the librarian. 20. Make a list of all the indoor and outdoor games you enjoy playing.1

21. Make a list of all the indoor and outdoor games you enjoy watching.

22. Keeping in mind the suggestion about limited subjects, make a list of topics, taken from those just prepared, on which you have something to say.

Arrange them so that they will be convenient for reference.

23. Be prepared to write a secretary's report of the next recitation in English.

It is the duty of such a reporter to pick out the important points and to give information about them in a clear, concise way. Some matters he may pass over, some he should merely mention, and others he should treat fully. The following record, by the class secretary for the day, explains itself.


October 20, 1912

Division IA met in Room 5 at ten o'clock for the regular recitation in English. After the reading and criticism of the secretary's report for October 18, the teacher distributed some themes that are to be corrected and returned next time. He called attention to the convenience of the Key on page 28, and went about the room to explain criticisms that were not clear. He had Master Fox read from page 27

1 Most of the class will be able to add to their lists, if some of the longest ones are written on the blackboard.

the distinction between "revising" and "rewriting," and urged the class to remember these two points:

1. The pupil who pays no attention to directions for revision neglects his opportunities and wastes his teacher's time.

2. The slipshod habit of attending to some suggestions, and disregarding others because they are not understood or do not seem feasible, will not be tolerated.

As soon as every one understood all the marks that had been made on his manuscript, the pupils in the third and fourth rows read aloud the theme for the day, Exercise 35, page 30. Each pupil stood well and read clearly, although some read so indistinctly at first that they had to try two or three times. The themes were then exchanged and criticized in accordance with Exercise 36, page 30.

The next lesson is to write a secretary's report of to-day's recitation.

Every one was present.

Respectfully submitted,

1 Some teachers of English find it convenient to have such a report written in connection with each recitation. An arrangement which has proved very satisfactory is to set apart a notebook for such reports. In this notebook A writes his report of to-day's recitation, reads it at the next recitation, and passes the book to B, who in turn is secretary for the day and hands the book to C. Not only is the exercise a good one, but the secretary's book is convenient both for calling attention to the business of the day and for enabling a pupil who has been absent to find out just what work he must make up.

« AnteriorContinuar »