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COURSE OF STUDY IN THE NORMAL SCHOOLS, ADOPTED JANUARY 9, 1866.
The design of the Normal Schools is strictly professional; that is, to prepare, in the best possible manner, the pupils for the work of organizing, governing, and instructing the Public Schools of the Commonwealth.
To this there must be the most thorough knowledge: first, of the branches of learning required to be taught in the schools; and, second, of the best methods of teaching those branches.
The time of the course extends through a period of two years; and is divided into terms of twenty weeks each, with daily sessions of not less than five hours, five days each week. The branches of study to be pursued are as follows:
First Term. 1. Arithmetic, oral and written, begun. 2. Geometry begun. 3. Chemistry. 4. Grammar and Analysis of the English language.
Second Term. 1. Arithmetic completed; Algebra begun. 2. Geometry completed; Geography and History begun. 3. Physiology and Hygiene. 4. Grammar and Analysis completed. 5. Lessons once or twice a week in Botany, and Zoology.
Third Term. 1. Algebra completed; Book-keeping. 2. Geography and History completed. 3. Natural Philosophy. 4. Rhetoric and English Literature. 5. Lessons once or twice a week in Mineralogy and Geology.
Fourth Term. 1. Astronomy. 2. Mental and Moral Science—including the principles and art of Reasoning. 3. Theory and Art of Teaching, -including:
(1.) Principles and Methods of Instruction.
(3.) School Laws of Massachusetts.
In connection with the foregoing, constant and careful attention to be given throughout the course to drawing and delineations on the blackboard ; music; spelling, with derivations and definitions; reading, including analysis of sounds and vocal gymnastics; and writing.
The Latin and French languages may be pursued as optional studies, but not to the neglect of the English course.
General exercises in composition, gymnastics, object lessons, &c., to be conducted in such manner and at such times as the Principals shall deem best.
Lectures on the different branches pursued, and on related topics, to be given by gentlemen from abroad, as the Board or the Visitors shall direct, and also by the teachers and more advanced scholars.
The order of the studies in the course may be varied in special cases, with the approval of the Visitors.
The Board deem it unwise to encourage the formation of regular advanced classes, whose instruction can not fail to divert a considerable amount of the time and attention of the teachers from the under-graduate course; but graduates who wish to review any part of their course, or to make more thorough attainments in particular branches, and who are willing to render such assistance as may be needed in giving instruction in the schools, may, with the consent and under the direction of the Visitors, remain at the schools for a period not exceeding two terms.
STATE NORMAL SCHOOL
AT FRAMINGHAM, MASS.
The State Normal School at Framingham, the first Normal School under State auspices in America, was opened at Lexington, with a formal Address by Gov. Everett, July 3d, 1839.* Three young ladies were all that presented themselves as candidates for examination. The school commenced with these, and the number increased in a few weeks to twelve. In October, a Model School was organized and placed under the charge of Miss Mary Swift. The school continued at Lexington for five years. In May, 1844, having outgrown its accommodations, it was removed to West Newton, where Josiah Quincy Jr., purchased a building, formerly used as a private Academy, which he gave to the Secretary of the Board of Education, who had searched in vain for a suitable structure within the means of the Board. The building was out of repair, but at the expense of Mr. Mann, and the contribution of the citizens of West Newton, it was put in proper order for the use of the school. The school increased in numbers, and additional accommodations were provided in the rooms at first occupied by the Model Department, which were vacated on the removal of the Model School to other quarters provided by the town.
In 1850 and 1851, the Board of Education took measures to bring before the Legislature the increasing wants of the school, and in May, 1852, the sum of $6,000 was placed at the disposal of the Board, to defray the expenses of providing a more commodious site and building. The Board were directed to receive propositions from towns and individuals, and afterwards to make such selection as would, in their opinion, best subserve the interests of the institution. After carefully considering the propositions presented, the Board determined to transfer the school to Framing. ham, where it was opened December 15th, 1853.
The building. now occupied by the State Normal School, with the preparation of the grounds, and the furniture, cost about $20,000. The site, consisting of five and three-quarter acres of land, was presented by individuals. The town appropriated $2,500, and the Boston and Worcester Railroad Company $2,000, in aid of the erection of the building.
The first Principal, Rev. Cyrus Peirce, was compelled to resign on account of ill health, in 1842. His successor, Rev. Samuel J. May, had charge of the school from Sept. 1842, to Aug. 1844, when he resigned, and Mr. Peirce, who had recovered his health, was re-appointed, and resumed his duties in September, 1844. Mr. Peirce again failed in health, and was compelled to resign in April, 1849, and Rev. Eben S. Stearts was appointed to succeed him. Mr. Stearns resigned in 1855, and Mr. George N. Bigelow, his successor, remained in charge of the school from that time till 1866, when on his resignation, the Board of Education de termined to place the school under the charge of a iady, and Miss Annie E. Johnson was appointed Principal. Miss Johnson was installed September 4th, 1866. This occasion, the first instance of a State Normal School being placed under the charge of a lady, was inaugurated by addresses from Gov. Bullock and Ex-Gov. Emory Washburn.
* This Address was repeated at Barre, on the 5th of September, 1839, on the opening of the Normal School at that place.
CONDITION IN 1867.
The following information of this school is from a Circular for 1867:
Nature and Design. This School was established by the State of Massachusetts for the preparation of female teachers to instruct in her public schools. Pupils are admitted from any State in the Union.
Tuition is free to those intending to teach in the public schools of Mas sachusetts; but those intending to teach in other States, or in private schools, are required to pay $15.00 a term for tuition. At the beginning of every term, each pupil pays $1.50 to meet incidental expenses.
Conditions of Entrance. Candidates for admission must be at least sixteen years of age; must give a pledge to remain in the School at least four consecutive terms, and to observe faithfully all the regulations of the Institution; and must declare their full intention of teaching in the public schools of Mas. sachusetts after graduation. They must also present a certificate of good physical, intellectual, and moral character, from some responsible person, and pass a satisfactory examination in reading, spelling, writing, defining, grammar, geography, and arithmetic.
The examination for admission takes place on Tuesday, the first day of each term, commencing at nine o'clock, A. M. Special examinations are allowed, in unusual cases, for a few days after the commencement of the term.
Every pupil must furnish herself with a Bible, a dictionary, and a common atlas, and can bring such other books as the applicant may have.
Terms and Vacations. The school year, consisting of forty weeks, is divided into two terms. The first term commences on the first Tuesday in September, and the second on the third Tuesday in. February. The first term is preceded by a vacation of eight weeks, and the second by one of three weeks.
Studies. The course of study includes reading, with analysis of sounds and vocal gymnastics; writing; spelling, with derivations and definitions; punctuation; grammar, with analysis of the English language; arithmetic; algebra; geometry; physical and political geography, with map-drawing;
physiology; botany; zoology; geology; natural philosophy; astronomy ; mental and moral philosophy; school laws; theory and art of teaching; civil polity of Massachusetts and the United States ; English literature; vocal music; and drawing.
Constant and careful attention will be given throughout the course to drawing and delineations on the black-board.
The Latin and French languages may be pursued as optional studies, but not to the neglect of the English course. There are general exercises in composition, gymnastics, object-lessons, &c.
Lectures on the different branches pursued, and on related topics, are given by gentlemen from abroad, as the Board or the Visitors shall direct; and also by the teachers and more advanced scholars.
Graduates who wish to review a part of their course, or to make more thorough attainments in particular branches, and who are willing to render such assistance as may be needed in giving instruction in the school, may, with the consent and under the direction of the Visitors, remain at the school for a period not exceeding two terms.
The length of the regular course is two years; but pupils who have had much experience in teaching, and are well qualified, may complete it in a year and a half, the shortest time for which one can be a member of the school. Those who, in all probability, would become successful teachers, but who fail for any reason to complete the course in the required time, must, and others who desire it may, take a longer time.
The special professional training consists, 1st, of plans of exercises on each subject studied by the class. These plans are presented orally for the criticism of teachers and pupils. And 2d, of teaching exercises given by the Senior class to a class of children who come in from one of the public schools in town..
Board. The price of Board varies from $4.00 to $4.124 per week. There is generally an extra charge for fuel and lights. Pupils are not permitted to board so far from the Institution as to render it impracticable for them to be present at all the regular exercises.
Library, Apparatus, and Cabinet. A well-selected Library belongs to the school, to which the pupils have daily access. The text-books in most of the English studies, and music, and encyclopædias, dictionaries, and many other works of refer. ence, are furnished to the pupils free of charge. The school is well supplied with apparatus for illustration in natural philosophy and chemistry, and has a valuable cabinet of minerals and geological specimens.
The friends of education are earnestly desired to contribute books and pamphlets for the library; philosophical and chemical apparatus ; minerals and specimens of natural history for the cabinet. These will add greatly to the present means of usefulness of the Institution.