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(a) “Turn to page — in your reading-book, a piece of descriptive writing from — Write a list of the prepositional phrases in the - paragraph. Say which you think is the most beautiful phrase, in sound and in meaning. (6) Rewrite the paragraph, expressing all that is in it, so far as possible, by using other forms of expression instead of these phrases. Determine what quality the original has lost by this change." Exercise 5:
Study the etymology of the prepositions. Exercise 6:
By experiment, find out how many of them by use pass into adverbs; into other parts of speech. Exercise 7:
Take note in reading —-— of uncommon uses of these words, both as prepositions and as other parts of speech.
CELECTING and committing to memory poru tions of the text should be a part of every lesson in the study of English. · Each pupil's selection should be based on some reason in his own mind; an admiration of the thought, of the words, the melody of the verse, a rhetorical figure, or a fact which he wishes to remember.
As these selected passages are to be held permanently in the memory, they may furnish much good material for writing, at a moment's notice. Exercise 1:
The class may each write from memory a short selection, learned on account of the beauty of the thought contained, from Lowell. Let them write for ten minutes on what is suggested. Or they may exchange papers and write what the selection suggests. Exercise 2:
“Write from meinory a passage from Longfellow's · Morituri Salutamus.' (a) Explain what connection it has with the whole ; (6) give the
thought that precedes and that which follows, and write a ten-line composition on the thoughts suggested by the independent passage." Exercise 3:
Comment on the passage, noticing the scansion, the words, figures, poetic license, construction, and thought. Exercise 4:
Annotate minutely, noticing the etymology of uncommon words. Exercise 5: “ Men whose lives glided on like rivers that water the wood
land. Darkened by shadows of earth but reflecting an image
of heaven." “ Expand the figure which makes up this incomplete extract, showing how men's lives could glide on like rivers, be darkened by shadows, and reflect an image of heaven. Give the literal history of lives which could make this figurative description possible and true.”
THE STUDY OF FORM.
AFTER some such study of short and simple A pieces, in both prose and verse, as is broadly outlined in Chapter VI., older pupils may begin to study Irving's “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow," Longfellow's “ Evangeline,” Whittier's “Snow-Bound," or Scott's “ Lady of the Lake.”
A good help to appreciating what is in a piece of writing is to examine carefully what manner of words, phrases, sentences, figures, etc., the author has used in giving written form to his thought, or, in other words, in telling his story.
Naturally this does not come first as a part of conscious work. If interested at all, the boy or girl is interested in the story, or matter.
Neither profit nor pleasure can be expected to come from the study of technicalities as such, out of their order. The study of the letter, when the letter is a thing despised, killeth ; when the letter is perceived to be a thing connected with the life of thought, it giveth life. Word-lore comes late, and as a consequence of a sufficient love of books.
With all the judgment the teacher has, buttressed by constantly added experience from observing her pupils during the lesson bours, and by enthusiasm, stimulated by their awakening enthusiasm in the discussion of the literal meaningsthe botany, zoölogy, astronomy, religion, history, and, in its order, the poetry—of the studied poem, she lures them on to notice other things; to glow over the beauty of a phrase, to smile over the history of a curious word, to wonder at, then to admire, the force of a rhetorical figure, or the felicity of a certain grammatical construction ; she lures them on, in brief, as if she were leading them into the wonders of a field or forest.
The study of the form of written thought may be simplified a little by adopting and adapting a plan somewhat like that which follows. Be it remembered, however, that work of this kind, its time and order of doing, must depend on the advancement in interest, and that each new thing ought to bring itself to notice and lead the way to seeing other things of the same and of different kinds.
The study of a piece of writing by the single stanza
(a) Kinds of sentences.
jective, etc.) 2. Idioms.