The fourth edition of the Sewing Course has been entirely rewritten and contains almost a new volume on teaching. This educational section has been prepared in response to the frequently expressed wish that the author would discuss this subject for the benefit of those teachers who had not taken the Domestic Art Course at Teachers College. The book was originally written for the College students to supplement their instruction by technical data. It is now in use throughout the United States. Since it was first issued, in 1893, there has been a great evolution in educational thought and still further changes are imminent. Interest in manual training has grown and is gradually being supplemented by enthusiasm in many new phases of industrial and trade education. The teachers of handwork have now a very responsible work to do. As a preparation for it they need as excellent a culture foundation and pedagogical training as any academic teacher. In addition they must have satisfactory technical experience. The author trusts that these suggestions for teaching may be of service.
The new educational views which affect the teacher of sewing have come gradually. The narrow sewing course of the early schools was first strengthened by the added requirements for training mind, emotions and habits. Soon another phase appeared and efficiency in life and social service became the goal of handwork. Again the appreciation of the many needs in American homes has called upon the teachers of the household arts to consider these problems and to aid in their solution. The awakening of the country to the condition of the vast body of wage earners has again added a demand for vocational training as a part of the public instruction and the teacher of manual arts finds her horizon again widen. To be successful she must know her subject from all sides. The four prefaces to successive editions of this book show between their lines the gradual awakening to new values in hand training in education.
Mary Schenck Woolman. New York, March 27, 1908,