Another kind of training which remains in the home is that which has to do with the physical life and habits of the child. The old mammy was quite wise in saying, when she came to take charge of a two-day-old child, that she "didn't like to begin so late; a child got so many bad habits the first day." Regularity of habits, cleanliness of person, right standards of air supply, reasonable choice of food, proper methods of feeding, and decency in clothing are among the teachings which the home must give the child in earliest infancy and continue to give by persistent and patient effort all through the formative years. Hereditary tendencies must be observed and directed or checked, as the case may be, and thus future ills be warded off through right living. Moreover, it is in the home, rather than on the street or in the playground, that the mysteries of new life are to be revealed to the child, and sex distinctions and sex functions are to be made the basis of instruction in the principles and practice of sex health. This is one of the gravest duties which belong to parents, and it is lamentable that so many are incompetent to fulfill it.
Within the home must come the training which gives the individual consciousness of belonging to a group. He recognizes dimly that there his physical needs are satisfied, because he does not suffer. He is sheltered, clothed, and fed. He is given what he has a right to have. He is surrounded with love and sympathy, and feels a sense of protection. He must learn to give in return. He must help when there is sickness or suffering, join with others in offering courtesy to "the stranger within the gates," and make from time to time little sacrifices called for by the good of the whole. In training him thus, the home will so educate him that, when he becomes a member of a larger group, he will not merely clamor for his "rights," but will render those services which make for the large social consciousness that is to prevail if increasing human welfare is to mark the advancing years.
Such are some of the educational problems of today which the home must face and solve, and in so far as it shirks or ignores them it fails to justify itself as an institution to be perpetuated.
1. What kinds of training of the young are going out of the home?
2. What arrangements can be made so that the children will have playrooms, workshops, or laboratories where they may develop individual gifts?
3. How may respect for the children's rights to their personal property be shown?
4. In what ways may they be trained to care for their personal property?
5. How may they be taught to be generous with what belongs to them?
6. What opportunities may be given them to cooperate in choosing their clothing and even to have full responsibility?
7. How may they be trained in the handling and use of money?
8. What methods may be used to teach wise and proper saving?
9. What means may be used to train them in voice and speech?
10. To what extent may they be allowed to participate in the family conversation without dominating it?
11. What household ditties may be assigned to them for which they may be held responsible?
12. How may habits of personal cleanliness be enforced?
13. How may sex functions be best explained?
14. To what extent may manufacturing processes be retained in the home for educational purposes?
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Leonard and Gertrude. Pestalozzi. Boston: D. C. Heath & Co.
Cyclopedia of Education. Paul Monroe. Article on Family Education. New York: The Macmillan Co.
The Coming Generation. W. B. Forbush. New York: D. Appleton & Co. Euthenics.
Ellen H. Richards. Boston: Whitcomb & Barrows.
Home, School, and Vacation. Annie W. Allen. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co.
The Town Child. R. A. Bray. London. Democracy and Social Ethics, Chapter VI (Management). Jane Addams. New York: The Macmillan Co.
Progress in the Household, Chapter II (The Household As The Centre Of Consumption). L. M. Salmon.
Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co.