Sunday, January 25, 2009

Robert Keable Row, 1909

Robert Keable Row was the author of The Educational Meaning of Manual Arts and Industries, 1909
"But, say the advocates of book education, young children are unable to do anything in the manual arts and domestic science that is really worth while. They cannot be expected to have sufficient knowledge of materials, control of tools and of processes to produce things of real value. In many cases, measured by adult standards, that may be true. But that is not the point of view here urged. The aim of this work in the schools is the development of efficient boys and girls, not the production of tables and tabourets, of pies and pinafores. The best teachers of drawing in elementary schools have long since repudiated the idea that their aim is that their pupils shall produce works of art. They aim to give training in expression through lines, light and shade and colors to develop a sense for good form and proportion, for harmony in color, and an appreciation of what is good in industrial design. So in all our schoolwork, it is not what the child produces that is the real aim of the school, but the effect of the effort upon the learner, the development of an appreciation of real values, and of the power to control those values. Hence it is of supreme importance that the work undertaken should seem of real value to the child. And it is with this condition distinctly understood that training in manual arts and industries is urged as of supreme importance for children from seven to twelve years of age."

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