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Reynolds, Annie / The training of teachers for the country schools of Wisconsin

Conclusion,   p. 65 PDF (247.2 KB)

Page 65

them, they are injurious and should be condemned. Pupils should
not sit at the second table of the teacher's mind. Unless in her
classes a teacher's "quick and electric vivacity of spirit acts as a
breeze on the sluggish waters", and unless in business hours she
can set pupils' machinery in motion, she should not be called a good
teacher, no matter what her social gifts and graces are.
Excellent teaching is delightful work, but it is also exhausting,
and it is entitled to one's best strength. Some of the great public
w elfare movements of the world call upon teachers to enlist in
their service. Some do so, and because this out-of-school activity
saps their strength, the greatest public service a woman can per-
form-to form a child so that he later will not need reforming-is
not done as it might be. The argument for interest along the ex-
tension lines here suggested is that it will serve the best interests of
the teacher, the parents and the children because it will serve to
unite them.
   In all the plans for the educational future of the country districts
of Wisconsin the greatest quest will undoubtedly continue to be the
discovery of training teachers of sense and discernment who are so
enamored of the possibilities of their task that they will give to their
work the absorbing application it needs. It is no easy task to find
tactful men or women having first hand and detailed knowledge of
country life who are willing not only to work in behalf of the stu-
dents enrolled in their training schools, but glad also to go into
unattractive, inefficiently taught country schools and work with
country teachers for their improvement; who are in addition to all
this, eager to render whatever assistance in community service the
local conditions demand. Since such responsible work is entrusted
to training teachers, it follows that it should receive recognition in
the payment of salaries commensurate with the demands made upon
   All who are interested must be willing to work unceasingly to find
 and to keep well prepared men and women possessing health, buoy-
 ancy, charm and nobility of character engaged in the work of train-
 Ing country teachers. In turn the country teachers so trained will
 enter wholeheartedly and without reserve into the mighty task of
 raising the standard of country life, and their measure of success
 will be to a very great degree the measure of the future greatness of
 this state.

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