HC Deb 23 February 1888 vol 322 c1238
MR. HUBBARD (Bucks, N.)

asked the Vice President of the Committee of Council on Education, If the Education Department would consider the possibility of encouraging the teaching of practical elementary science, by formulating courses of object lessons for infant schools and classes (as allowed by Art. 106, b (2), and Art. 109, f (1) of the Code of 1887), which would have a direct bearing on the industries of different districts—e.g., lessons on common plants, animals, birds, and "noxious insects," for agricultural districts; on fish and tides, for districts on the sea coast; on earths and minerals, for mining districts, &c.; and, whether the Department would make the adoption of such courses of lessons a condition for obtaining the highest merit grant?


It is not the practice of the Department to interfere with the freedom of managers and teachers, so far as to formulate courses of lessons; but if my hon. Friend will refer to Section 8 of the Revised Instructions, he will see that teachers are now directly encouraged to adapt the object lessons given to the circumstances of the district; and the Inspector in estimating the merit grant would naturally take this point into consideration. The object my hon. Friend has in view is an admirable one, and I may add that those who wish to give practical effect to his suggestions, so far as agriculture is concerned, will find themselves greatly assisted by some excellent diagrams published by the Royal Agricultural Society for the purpose.