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The Lessons for the Afternoon form the International Series,
which are mow used simultaneously in Americly on the Son-
SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION,
56, OLD BAILEY, E.C.
THE special feature of the Uniform Lesson System is that the SAME subjects engage the attention, simultaneously, of all the several divisions of the school. It may also be characterised as Scriptural, Simple, Comprehensive, Varied, and Economical. The Lessons are all selected from the Holy Scriptures, they are suited to the various grades of the scholars, who are thereby rendered familiar with the leading contents of both the Old and New Testaments : the issue of a new List, at the commencement of each year, imparts the important elements of freshness and variety, while the teachers, also, are assisted by helps suited to their requirements.
For forty years the SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION has published annual Lists of Lessons and Monthly Notes for teachers, and these have been circulated in ever-increasing numbers year by year. The introduction of the International Lessons, some years since, after conference with American Sunday School men, as one of the lessons of the day, added another principle to that of systematic Bible study, viz., simultaneous Bible teaching throughout a large proportion of the Sunday School field in nearly all parts of the world. Union and communion in Bible study among half or three-quarters of a million teachers and five or six millions of scholars, reading the same lesson on the same day, is at least a delightful and stimulating fact.
The new movement involved new efforts and new publications, as well as the adaptation and modification of existing ones. The Committee have given their continued and earnest attention to the matter, with a view of providing teachers and scholars with assistance in the regular preparation and study of the appointed lessons. They are glad to say their efforts have met with marked and increasing success. Kindred institutions have now adopted the “ International” scheme, while ministers, public men, and well-known writers, have in pulpit, platform, and periodical, recognised the movement, and testified to its many benefits.
Experience with the International System has shown in many ways the benefits derived from its adoption. Among these may be mentioned the increased influence of the Bible over the people—the increased authority of the Bible as our one standard of faith and truth-the exaltation of the teaching work in the Sunday School-and the increased influence it has brought to other religious agencies.
We notice the various publications of the SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION bearing on the Uniform Lesson, and point out their connection with the International System now happily so widely adopted.
1. That the Scholars may be examined in what they have been taught during the preceding three months, one afternoon in each quarter is set apart for a Review Lesson.
2. The Golden Text is designed to be a Motto or Key Text, embodying the leading truth, and therefore especially suited for learning by heart. Together with the Golden Text the scholar should be encouraged to learn—3. The Lesson Verse for each Sunday morning and afternoon. It consists of four, six, or eight lines of poetry (mostly the verse of a hymn), teaching the great truth of the Lesson.
4. Notes on the Lessons are issued monthly (a month in advance). These provide, for each morning and afternoon, explanatory, expository, and practical observations on the appointed subjects, with brief Hints on the Infant Class Texts. 5. A Pocket Lesson Book is issued quarterly, containing for each Sunday morning and afternoon the Subject, Golden Text, and Lesson Verse, with, in connection with the afternoon lessons, a portion of Bible reading for every day in the week, such portion having a bearing on the next Sunday's lesson.
6. Pictorial Lesson Papers-intended to be distributed to the Scholars a week in advance. They contain (for Afternoon) the Golden Text, Lesson Verse, Home Readings, Home Questions, Brief Explanations, and a Pictorial Hlustration. They are designed to promote Bible Study at home. 7. Advanced Lesson Leaflets. The great success of the Pictorial Lesson Papers for Junior Classes, together with the need felt by many Senior Class Teachers for a similar series adapted to the requirements of Elder Scholars, have led to the issue of a series especially designed to meet the case. These Leaflets are printed on tinted paper, and contain the Text of the Lessons, the References for Home Readings, the Golden Text and Lesson Verses, besides explanatory matter and questions thereupon, two pages being left blank for the answers to be written upon.
8. Scripture Lesson Book for Elementary Classes, published quarteriy. A selection from the reading portion for each Morning and Afternoon.
9. Scripture Texts for Infant Classes. Very Large Type. Monthly. Consisting of two Scripture Texts, chosen for each Sunday, always relating to the appointed subjects for the day.
10. The Teacher's Pocket-Book and Sunday School Teacher's Diary ; valuable for Notes, Memoranda, and for the continuous gathering of daily anecdote and illustration-of Biblical and general information, &c. &c., ail designed to aid the weekly preparation of teachers for the efficient instruction and training of their respective classes.
11. The Sunday School Teachers' Class Register, published annually, containing a Calendar, List of Scripture Lessons for the entire year, Ruled Pages for the Weekly Attendance of the Scholars, and of the Cash received from them for Books, &c.; together with several Useful Tables, Jewish Weights and Measures, Jewish Calendar, &c. 11. The Smaller Class Register contains a List of Lessons and Ruled Pages for the Weekly Attendance of Scholars.
12. The International Daily Text Book for 1882. A handy little book for Teachers and Scholars, containing the Reference for Home Readings for each Day in the Year, a Daily Text for the Year, and each Sunday's Golden Text from the International Lessons.
13. The International Golden Text, issued quarterly, 13 in a packet, printed in very large type, for hanging on the walls of schools from week to week.