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Published January, February, March, April, May, June, September,
October, November, December, 1919
Composed and Printed By
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.
The principal of one of our successful normal colleges means two things when he speaks of the socialization of the English work. He means the socializing of the content of the work in composition, grammar, and literature and the socializing of the procedure in the classroom. He means (1) the fitting of the subject-matter of the English work closely into the present-day thoughts and lives of the students—the relating of the English work closely to the community life, and (2) the conduct of the recitation largely by the students themselves, with the teacher as guide—the conduct of the recitation by a pupil as a member of an active social group.
It would be folly to substitute devices for a principle or paraphernalia for an attitude, but it may not be futile to glance at certain simple illustrations of social activities in classroom procedure. Of course these are given only as illustrations. Progressive schools of the country, north, west, east, and south, can offer other kinds of illustrations of classroom social activities.
As part of the student activity of the classroom, it is common for teachers to have a secretary's report of the preceding meeting read as the first number on the program at each meeting. The following report may give a partial idea of the range of student activity.
In the report, the purpose of the instructor to get the students roused to personal activity while he remains in the background as
098 A te vrarias y de het vnument, Bagardia; ue isture ci tie stara se pola you will au farkazi mnacely cau-t5 7225€ 23 :eest in a play as a payurfizh the anayisig oi pristos ornnected with the structure and staze prexntation of the play.
SECRETAKY'S REPORT The sony-tounh mesting of the 4B English class was opened by the leader having the voice drill. Following this, Secretary Rhodebeck read his report for the trusting, mexting, There were no serious mistakes brought out when be
us the usual questions on completing his reading: "What errors in fact did you notice, Mr. Wardlaw? What criticisms have you on my reading and parture, Miss Blydenburgh?” The chairman said that on the whole the secretary's report was a very good summary of the trial of the preceding day.
After the report, the leader called on the instructor to frame the assignment for the next day. This lesson will continue the series in argumentative problems agreed upon by the class.
Following this, Mr. Young and Miss Blydenburgh had their debate: “The climax of Macbeth comes during the banquet scene in the third act at the moment when Macbeth first sees the ghost of Banquo.” Mr. Young took the affirmative side, and Miss Blydenburgh the negative. Mr. Young said that the questions to be decided were: (1) Is the climax at the place where the ghost first appears? (2) Does the climax come at any other place in the play? The affirmative speaker argued that the climax does come at the place where the ghost of Banquo first appears. Miss Blydenburgh said that the climax comes in Act III, Scene iv, where the news of Fleance's escape is brought to Macbeth. Miss Blydenburgh presented her side more convincingly, and so won the debate, according to the vote of the class.
Following this, the teacher was called upon by the chairman to give his criticisms. He said that the first point was only a repetition of the proposition. Mr. Young then tried to justify himself by saying that Miss Blydenburgh in their preliminary conference made him take this as the first point to be discussed. The class smiled at this. The teacher then told us that the determination of the exact climax didn't greatly matter. He thought there were two climaxes: the first, a scenic climax, or the point of view of spectators, which comes at the banquet scene; and the second, a logical climax, which comes at the point where news of Fleance's escape is brought to Macbeth. He said that the important matter was for us to think of the play as we had seen it on the stago and to realize where on that occasion we had been most excited and had felt things were at their height. To each of the speakers the chairman then handed the slips written by the class and containing lists of words mispronounced and comments on posture, enunciation, etc.
After the debate, the rest of the time was given to consideration of the issues involved in two other propositions on Macbeth: First, Macbeth is suitable for presentation in whole or in part by members of our class; and second, in any performance of Macbeth the part of Lady Macbeth should be taken by a large, full-faced, strong-chinned, red-haired lady. For the latter proposition, Mr. Walker suggested that the points to be determined were: Would such a description fit the facts in the play? Would Macbeth have cared for such a lady?
These topics were the basis for lively conversation. In the conversation, it was suggested that one of the boys see the manager of the Garden Theater and ask if Macbeth could be put on soon.
The bell then rang, and the class adjourned. There were no students absent.
FLORENCE WIMMEL, Secretary This account of a socialized procedure on a specified day in a single class may be open to the objection that it does not show complete socialization of content. That, however, is not the point of the present discussion. By a stenographic report of any one of many recitation periods in a school where the English work is socialized both in content and procedure, I might give an idea of the socialization of content. I might offer reports of interviews that boys and girls had had with parents regarding books read during a semester (As You Like It, Tom Brown's Schooldays, Stevenson's Travels with a Donkey, Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress), I might reproduce classroom conversations regarding Y.M.C.A. work among soldiers, or give an account of a week's campaign in English classes leading to the pledging of most of the boys to earn $10.00 for the Y.M.C.A., or tell of the Liberty Loan and War Savings dialogues and dramatizations. Just now I am merely trying to give a slight idea of what one teacher means by socialized classroom procedure.
The ideas that a certain student, Thomas Young, has regarding the meaning of the socialized recitation are as follows:
There are three ways of conducting a recitation in the high school. One way is having the teacher in absolute and continual leadership of the class. Another way is to conduct a recitation under the leadership of a pupil in absolute control. The third way is to put a pupil in charge of the class and have the teacher take part as an adviser and helper.
By the socialized recitation we mean at Richmond Hill High School the following things: Every day, after consultation with the class, the instructor
tips in the ser: day a definite lesson on a definite subject in a textbook or 6C 2 sobiect not in the textbook. He then asks a group of questions on the saic size or assists the class in framing a set. A leader, a secretary, 2. a rader or a speaker are then named in regular order; the pupils whose
is to act in these capacities go to the board and write their names there. To's assignment is taken down in systematic form in the notebooks.
Ver day, the leader takes the chair set apart for him and with the aid of his Docebook conducts the meeting. He calls for the secretary's report and asks the reader or speaker to do his part. Then he calls on members of the class to recite on the questions of the day's assignment or to take up the problem on which the class is working. During the meeting, any pupil may ask a questica or criticize a statement by parliamentary procedure or good-mannered conversation.
Social procedure in the correction of blackboard work, in the correction of notebooks, in dramatizations, in discussion of threeminute talks, in the testing of memory selections, etc., offers many opportunities for teachers and classes. Perhaps someone may be interested in the following accounts by pupils:
SOCIAL-GROUP CORRECTING IN BOARD WORK Early this term our teacher instituted a new form of blackboard-work correction. A representative of each of the five groups was chosen by the group members to write on the blackboard on a topic assigned by the leader for the day. The group leaders were assigned to write an account of this new method of doing blackboard work, while the other members of the group were assigned to watch and correct the work of their group representative at the blackboard.
While the persons at the board were writing, the members of their groups offered criticisms from time to time. Some of those at the board had to begin their work over again, since their opening sentences did not have a close conDection to the topic assigned. Some had to omit portions. Errors in punctuation and spelling were corrected. At the completion of the blackboard work each writer reported what help he or she had obtained from the members of the group. These are the names of the groups: “L'Etoile,” “We Girls,” “Handsome Four," "Ambitious Four," "The Liberty Five."
SOME OTHER ACTIVITIES OF THE GROUPS For the purpose of aiding every member, the eighth-term English class has formed itself into social groups. Thus the members have become a very good aid to each other and at the same time to the teacher. Each group is composed of about six members chosen according to seating, according to fitness for