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developed. Ere a few months have passed, the child learns to look up lovingly and trustingly, and the parents may begin to lead its young affections whither they will.
Pleasant days, and weeks, and months go gliding by, and very many parents are taken by surprise at the progress and hopeful development of their little ones during the first five or six years; thenceforward, in too many instances, there seems to come on gradually, almost imperceptibly, a blight of the moral affections. We are thankful that, in those families where there is conscientious care in training children, this is not decidedly the case ; yet how often, even in such families, is the time when the child leaves the parental fireside for the school room marked as a time of change, a time from whence there seems a manifest deterioration of principle !
Whence the cause, and how shall the evil be met ? Doubtless there is more than a single cause; but these queries have suggested the following pages, which, if prosperous, shall be but as the foreshadowing of other efforts. The author would
Let the moral affections continue to be cultivated ; let their constant and perfect development be sought in the school room as well as at home ; let duty be daily and hourly inculcated by “line upon line, and precept upon precept," with the same good judgment which we manifest in caring for the intellect.
It has been a common practice, unhesitatingly adopted and blindly followed, to cram infant heads and cloy infant minds with thoughts of the abstruser sciences, to the neglect of the proper aliment so well adapted to their tender years, and which is to be found for them in the unfoldings of moral truths. In the common pursuits of learning, beyond reading and spelling, little real advantage is derived by children previous to the age of nine or ten which might not be far better and more easily attained at a later period ; while, should only moral truths be cared for in their culture during those previous years, the same might prove rich in stores for future harvests.
Hoping that a new train of thought may possibly be elicited, and that some corresponding effort may be put forth, this little book takes its course “adown the stream of time;" while, successful or otherwise, its author is comforted with a consciousness of a laudable aim and a pure motive.