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must be adopted to meet the special circumstances. Let us, however, always bear in mind the following axioms, viz. : (1.) Continual nagging and fault-finding will never produce order in any school; disorderly children get so accustomed to it, that it fails to produce the slightest impression upon them. (2.) Never threaten any punishment, which, if necessary, you would consider it unwise to carry out; and what is still more important, which you do not feel yourself quite competent to enforce to the very letter. If we wish our word to be law, our scholars must distinctly understand that we never either promise or threaten anything in vain. (3.) We must always remember that children are, and ever will be, children; we cannot put old heads upon young shoulders. We must, therefore, be ready to make many little allowances, and quietly overlook many mischievous sayings and doings that are not really wrong. We must enter into their childish joys and pleasures, and if possible, share their childish griefs and difficulties.

Important as order is in our schools, it is but the introductory means to get the great end of Sunday school work. The most orderly school will be a complete failure in everything worth the name of success, if the true aim of our labour be not continually kept in view. Brethren and sisters, ours is an exalted calling. The longer I am engaged in it, the more I am convinced of the true dignity of our work. Ours is the blessed privilege of directing young, tender, and unbiassed minds to the Good Shepherd who gave His life for the flock. Ours is the honour to unfold the words and love of the Son of, and equal with, God, to those He specially blessed, and to tell them Jesus said, “ Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” But while it is a work of the highest dignity, it is also a work of the gravest responsibility. These children's souls are, at the most critical period of their existence, placed in our hands to mould for eternity. Of no light moment is it, then, to deal with our scholars so as to WIN THEM FOR JESUS.

Having reduced the school to something like order, the next thing Is to gain the love of the children to ourselves. To do this we must show love, and show it not only in school, but wherever we meet our scholars. Never must we pass them in the street without a friendly word, or recognition of some description. Especially is this important among the poorer class of children. I have had considerable experience in Ragged School work, and often have seen the ragged children leave their games, and with a happy “ here's teacher," run across the street to meet me. It was indeed worth much to see how their faces would brighten with a kindly word; it seemed like a ray of sunshine breaking in upon their too often dark and wretched lives. To neglect these opportunities, may cost us a star in our crown in the day when Christ shall make up His jewels. Children are keen reasoners; and it is not unreasonable for them to conclude, that if we have not sufficient love to give them a moment's notice, the love we talk about on Sunday must be pretty much of the same nature too. Love must be our power, the forge to which we bring all our difficulties. We know how many of the hardest substances soften under the influence of fire. Some melt readily under a gentle heat, others require an intense protracted heat before they yield; many, such as glass and iron, which

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fracture with violence and are marred under the heat of the furnace, yield us the most beautiful and delicate patterns. So will we find it with our pupil's hearts. We must bring them under the warm glow of Christian love; and stony indeed will be the heart that does not yield at the furnace of tender, persevering love. We must in the next place Lay ourselves open to study their varied characteristics, because, in most classes, I think we will find as many varieties of character

are scholars in the class; and what would be most successful dealing in one instance, would be utter failure in another. But, says one, in classifying a school, would it not be very desirable to arrange all similarly constructed minds in one class, and place them under the teacher who, in most respects, is suited to deal with such children? Very desirable indeed, had we only, first, the opportunity of studying the minds of the children before classifying them; and secondly, a sufficient staff of teachers to undertake the work. Unfortunately, however, very few schools are so blessed. Most have to take things pretty much as they find them; and it, therefore, becomes the teacher's duty, if he wishes to be successful, to carefully study every member of his class. This must be done quietly, steadily, and prayerfully, with the desire to cultivate all that is good and noble in our scholars, and to eradicate all that has an opposite tendency. It must be done quietly, or else the scholar may resent it as inquisitiveness, and either leave the school, or set himself to defeat your object on every possible occasion. It must be done steadily, because no person can read another in a single meeting, as many, and especially children, in the presence of strangers, frequently assume both virtues and failings that do not form part of their character. It must be done prayerfully, as only by God's blessing and help can we attain to any usefulness in any branch of His work.

Teachers will find great assistance in this study of character from the children themselves, if they can only get them to feel that they (the teachers) really desire to be the children's friend. This can best be done by taking a kindly, not too pressing, interest in all that concerns them, and encouraging them to tell their little joys and sorrows, their adventures and misadventures, gently bestow a word of warning here or approval there. The scholars will thus, almost before they know it themselves, begin to make their teacher their confidant, and the great difficulty of the study will at once be overcome.

Having solved this problem, and in some measure become acquainted with our scholars, the next and far more important question is, how to manage their peculiarities. With this end in view, suppose we take our

. place for a short time in an imaginary class. School has been opened and the teacher is commencing his afternoon's work. At the head of the class there is, of course, what we shall call the good boy of the little company. Neatly if not well dressed, clean and tidy in his habits, he is always in his place in good time, and is thoroughly prepared with the appointed lesson. No coarse word or troublesome conduct from this boy ever disturbs his teacher's comfort ; in fact, it is a pleasure to have him in the class. In your visits to his home, you find he bears the same character there ; respectful to his parents, gentle with his brothers and sisters, he is the bright spot in, perhaps, a very dark surrounding.



But still the faithful teacher is not satisfied. Sunday after Sunday does he draw the picture of the Saviour's love with all the earnestness in his power, and yet Sunday after Sunday does the good boy go away as unmoved as if his heart were a stone. Weary and sad the teacher may well ponder over his work, and wonder when the seed so earnestly sown will begin to bear fruit. Brother, weary not in well-doing; sow and pray, pray


sow, and some day, sooner perhaps than you dare now anticipate, a tear will glisten in that boy's eye, and the glad words will thrill your soul. “I want to love Jesus.” We have had some wonderful examples of this in our own school, such as make us thank God, and take courage in our work.

Sitting No. 2 in the class, is a boy who is always ready with his lesson, can say it perhaps better than No. 1; no question seems too difficult for this young man, and he rather prides himself

upon being able to put posers to his teachers.

This is the clever boy. Foremost at every festival, and on public occasions never at a loss for a good long reading or recitation, active and intelligent, full of mischief, without being really disobedient, the clever boy is a general favourite with teacher, scholars, and friends. Yet this is the boy that should arouse our gravest fears, our most watchful care. Unless checked, the very qualities that make him a favourite now, will lead him into company which, in after life, will be his ruin. Wise as serpents must we be in treating the clever boy; gently holding him back from too great a display of his powers, and, while not snubbing him, certainly discouraging his amusement of posing the teacher. Very earnest must be our efforts, to show him the utter weakness of all human wisdom, and constant our endeavours to teach him that the surrender of all his abilities of his body, soul, and spirit to the service of Christ is the highest wisdom, the purest joy.

The class is a large one, and we are unable to face all the boys at once. Engaged longer, perhaps, than we should be with Nos. 1 and 2 we are aroused by a shrill, “ Please, sir, Tom's pinching me.” This is

tell-tale ;" one of the most disagreeable characters we meet with in our Sunday school work. He is always leading his companions into mischief, at least showing them the way, and then drawing the teacher's attention to them. In the class he will first pinch his neighbour on the sly, and, if he retaliates, he will at once burst out with the cry which introduced him to our notice. Looking into characters of this description, we will generally find them stamped with both deceit and cowardice. So long as your eye is upon him, he is as meek and mild as a lamb, with a sleek, respectful “ Yes, sir," to everything you say ; leave him a minute, or turn your back to him, and he has the whole class in a laugh at your expense, by either making faces for them, or mimicking your

Never allow your boys or girls to get into this most detestable habit of tale-bearing. It works nothing but mischief, and is a habit which will grow more than any other if it has the slightest encouragement; while, on the other hand, it will very soon die out when the children find their tales receive no sympathy at head quarters. Let not the least of our objects be to make our boys manly men, and our girls true and modest women.

Quietly sitting next to our friend the clever boy, is No. 3 in the class ; a boy with whose personal character we seldom can find the slightest

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fault ; he is always in good time, steady and attentive, yet, when speaking of him, we always feel inclined to say, “He is really a good fellow, but dreadfully dull.” He will stammer through his home lesson, though

• " it is quite evident he has made an effort to learn it, and, attentive as he invariably is, you cannot but feel he does not understand many things that have been said. Great care must be exercised in dealing with such scholars as this. Generally speaking, they are of the most sensitive disposition; a kind word will make their eyes sparkle with delight, while a cross, sharp sentence will bring the flush of keenly felt pain upon their face.

We will nearly always find that they try to do well, and we must ever be ready with a helping hand, and never, by either word or action, let them feel any slight or rebuff. Dr. Arnold, the celebrated and successful head-master of Rugby, once spoke sharply to a dull boy, who replied, “Why do you speak so angrily to me, sir ? Indeed, I am doing the best I can.” Dr. Arnold said he never felt a rebuke so much in his life. And, again, speaking of pupils who zealously cultivated inferior powers of mind, he said, "I would stand to that man hat in hand.” Then let our manner to such be gentle and encouraging, leading them, step by step, through their difficulty, until, at least in some measure, it be overcome.

Very different is the lazy boy," who, when the lesson is half through, comes shuffling into the class, upsetting everything that comes in his way; never prepared with his verse, he will not even take the trouble to follow you while you read the lesson to the class. When spoken to directly, he will look at you with a vacant smile on his face, which seems to say, in order to save his tongue the labour of speaking, “ I dare say it is all very true, but you really appear to take a great deal of unnecessary trouble.” Nothing interests him, and nothing disturbs him. We have one or two examples of this character in our school, and I confess I do not know how to improve them ; perhaps some one present can suggest a plan of action.

Few classes, still fewer schools, are free from that plague of teachers, the “ incorrigible boy"—he whose chief delight seems to be, not only in keeping his class, but the whole school, in a state of feverish unrest. So tiresome is his defiance of all order, his bullying conduct to lesser scholars, that we cannot but feel a relief when his seat is vacant for even a single day. “Turn him out," I fancy I hear suggested as the modus operandi with this party. So should I have said myself some time ago, but now think it would be the worst thing we could do. It is, if you look at it calmly, a dreadful thing to turn any boy out of a Sunday school, as it will generally drive him from bad to worse. Our plan has been to entirely separate the really troublesome ones from the whole school, and place them under a volunteer teacher in another room. With them it is of no use to begin the afternoon with, “Be quiet,” “Sit still,” etc., but, with some stirring anecdote or reading, at once fix their attention upon you, and before they are well aware, thrust home some sound truth that may one day leave its mark for good on their character. Much must be overlooked with this class of boys, and everything depends upon the presence of mind of the teacher to act with love, decision, and firmness, as successive emergencies arise.

One thing we must ever remember in dealing with all our scholars is, that an ounce of

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Observer, Oct. 1, '75.

practice is worth a pound of precept; we must not direct their steps in one path and walk in another ourselves. Children are quick observers ; we must, therefore, be very circumspect, lest by our actions we ruin more than we save by our teaching.

There are many other interesting characteristics we could examine did time permit; but for one class of our scholars I must recommend a separate address, in which perhaps the most difficult Sunday school question might be fully dealt with I refer to our converted scholars; how shall we keep them interested as scholars until, fully equipped, they shall swell the ranks of qualified teachers ?

In conclusion, however correct our ideas of school discipline may be, they will avail little unless we practice self-discipline, one and all; a word spoken in temper may ruin the work of years, as readily as a false blow on the chisel may destroy the nearly finished marble statue. Let us, then, be watchful, prayerful, faithful, sowing the seed of good words and good example wherever our lot may be cast, comforted by the assurance that, though sown in much weakness, difficulty, or discouragement SURE, yes SURE, will the harvest be.



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Not long since the writer was waited upon by three very respectable "evangelical" clergymen for the purpose of arranging a union protracted meeting. It was at the close of a week of prayer in wþich all churches had united. It was requested to suggest a plan of co-operation and accordingly proposed, that if such a meeting was feasible at all, each preacher should in turn conduct the services and do it as it seemed to him right and best. The question was at once asked: "suppose there should be seekers' when it came your turn ?” I replied that I should give the answer given by the Apostles, under like circumstances, and in every other case would confine my answer and teachings to the words of Scripture admitted by all to apply to the subject. Without assigning reasons they promptly rejected my plan. In turn I requested them to suggest one, which they did by proposing that we ignore our differences concerning conversion and speak only such things as we held in common. They urged that the interest of the cause demanded such a union and that we all should be willing to sacrifice church distinctions for the common cause. I replied that I would accept their plan and engage in the meeting if they still thought best, but added that I should expect them to use the same care not to say anything conflicting with what I understood to be the scriptural view of conversion, that they would expect me to use respecting theirs. For some reason they unanimously rejected their own plan. Thus was made plain an adroit effort to compromise the truth in its purity, but which ended in casting the responsibility of separation and disunion entirely upon its authors. This unimportant circumstance is of course not uncommon, but it serves to illustrate the “cheap imitations” of union, so often advocated. not be misled by them, but insist with unflinching firmness that we will abate not a jot the plain teaching of Christ and Éis Apostles. In this

Let us

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