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A Drill in the Use of Caps and Points thru the Rimes of

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Perhaps the best quantitative verses in our language (better even than Coleridge's) are to be found in Mother Goose, composed by nurses wholly by ear and beating time as they danced the baby on their knee.

JAMES RUSSELL LOWELL From My Study Windows-1870

Mother Goose is worthy all the praise that she has received. . . . . Her rimes are jingles about the everyday activities of the home, and being in rime, they are easily remembered..... Because everybody knows them, they are the small change of education that can be passed from one purse to another. They are full of fun, and help us all to laugh and be happy.

Can you think of any other collection, no matter how instructive and beautiful, that could take its place?


From Training the Child, 1917



One of the issues of the day, educationally, is the relation of rhythm to technique.

This has long been the issue in science and philosophy. It is now the issue in psychology and pedagogy. It is an issue that cannot be dodged.

The relation of rhythm to technique is .. very near a religious as well as a scientific matter. It brings religion and pedagogy as close together as it does physiology and psychology.

Here are a few thrilling sentences of the Eurythmic science and art, physiology and psychology, philosophy and pedagogy :

There are two physical agents by means of which we appreciate music,-ear as regards sound, and the whole nervous system as regards rhythm.

The need is to create by the help of rhythm a rapid and regular current of communication between brain and body. . The aim is to eliminate in every muscular movement, by the help of the will, the untimely intervention of muscles useless for the movement in question, thus developing attention, consciousness, and will-power. . .

The body must become capable of responding to artistic rhythms and of realizing them quite naturally without fear of exaggeration.

Art has everything to hope from new generations brought up in the cult of harmony, of physical and mental health, of order, beauty, and truth.

In a word, rhythm is before, behind, beneath, beyond technique, just as the mental is higher and holier than the physical.

In Journal of Education, August 30, 1917


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The Mother Goose Rimes, so-called, are not indigenous to America. Most of them were well known in England two or three hundred years before our Mother Goose first saw the light. A French origin is indicated by certain rimes, and there is little doubt that these are from early French originals. Andrew Lang, well-known British critic, essayist, historian, poet, translator, and man of letters generally, has not thought it beneath his dignity to edit a large volume of these rimes.

However, Boston had a real Mother Goose, who doubtless added many more to the rimes held by her excellent memory. Her son-in-law, Thomas Fleet, served his generation well in printing her entire collection, of which a facsimile edition has now been issued by a Boston publishing house, with an introduction by the Respond Edward Hale, D. D. Everett

These nursery rimes constitute a body of folklore, which is the natural and proper inheritance of every English-speaking child. It is felt that all true teachers, therefore, will welcome a series of lessons based upon the rimes so lovingly cherished by many generations of our forbears. Altho no claim is herein made that these rimes are high-class literature, they are something equally necessary in the development of the child; for they voice the song and rhythm of the common people, uttered as the language gradually feels its way from infancy to full stature. As such, they must have a continuous appeal to everyone whose heart still dwells in the blessed land of childhood.


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