The Parents' Review

A Monthly Magazine of Home-Training and Culture

Edited by Charlotte Mason.

"Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life."
The "P.R" Letter Bag.

Volume 15, 1904, pg. 395-396

[The Editor is not responsible for the opinions of Correspondents.]

DEAR EDITOR,--My father, who is just now in America, went to visit the Carnegie Library, in Pittsburg, and was very much struck by the children's department. All the arrangements are exceedingly good. My father went into one room where there were about 200 children, aged from eight to sixteen, hard at work reading all sorts of books, travels, biographies, and stories. He saw two young ladies in charge, one of whom had just been telling to 50 children the story of the Holy Grail and King Arthur; and to some others, Norse legends and stories from Homer. Even the very tiniest have stories which they can understand. As I knew the P.N.E.U. was preparing a catalogue of children's books, I thought you would perhaps like to see the pamphlets he sent me. I hope that you are stronger now and will not find the winter too trying.
Yours Sincerely,
November 29th, 1903
Highclere House, Heston, Middlesex

DEAR EDITOR,--I was much interested in an article on Voice Production, in a recent number of Parents' Review, encouraging the hope that a weak and indistinct voice could be by proper management trained to strength and clearness. Do you think the writer of the article would be so very kind as to advise me how to procure such training for a young man up at Oxford? May I take this opportunity of thanking you very much for much help and instruction derived from the Review.
Yours Faithfully
April 11, 1904
Farnley, Leeds

The following extracts from a letter from a member in South Africa will interest our readers:--

DEAR EDITOR,--The intensely interesting "P.N.E.U. Manifesto," setting forth that "Studies serve for Delight, for Ornament, for Ability," I have just read and am reminded of my intention of joining the Mothers' Educational Course. It is my desire to undertake the children's earliest "lessons" myself. Indeed, there is no school at hand to which I should be able to quite happily commit them. My sense of responsibility concerning their up-bringing is very great, and I therefore feel keenly my own lack of preparation for the training and teaching of children. From the age of thirteen to eighteen, I myself attended a large day school where there was much cramming for "exams." quarterly and yearly. We took the Scottish Leaving Certificates in subjects which included Latin and Higher Mathematics (besides the "English" subjects and Modern Languages), but nothing whatever of Natural Science. We had absolutely no "Nature" teaching during the five years I was at the school, nor were we taught to think for ourselves. This makes it all the more formidable for me to contemplate the true and worthy education of my own children. Though supposed to have had a "good education," it was in such wise as to enable me to pass examinations always with success, but not really to fit me for after-life. Much head-knowledge was instilled into me, as I was diligent in my classes (being naturally inclined to study) and always stood well in regard to marks and prizes. Nevertheless, I do from my heart approve not of such things, but of those educational aims and methods which you expound in your various writings, and I long to make the realms of literature and science and all education knowledge living and real and full of ever-increasing interest to my children. By beginning in a good way, I hope I have nothing to undo, as those must who only see the wisdom of such education as you advocate when their children have already begun to be taught in more or less unsatisfactory ways. But I realize I must not now delay my own definite preparation for the time when "lessons" must be introduced to the children. I hope to teach them to read (and write) in the manner suggested in Home Education.
Believe me, yours truly,

Typed by Mrs. Erica Wright, August, 2023; Proofread by LNL, August, 2023