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Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1826,
By MUNROE AND FRANCIS,
In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of Massachusetts.
This little manual, as the title imports, is designed for the use of Primary Schools, and for the smaller scholars in common schools. It is simple and practical in its character, and presents such lessons to children as ought to be first learned.
The words of the Spelling Tables (except a few easy words in the former part of the book) are so classed as to convey the sounds of the vowels accurately. The sounds of such consonants as have more than one sound, are pointed out by the manner of printing, or by a note; and the accented syllables are designated at the beginning of the lesson. This method is thought to be better than crowding the pages with a multitude of small characters, which are perplexing to young children. The words are divided as they naturally are in correct pronunciation. The tables are composed of a copious selection of words in common use.
Unusual and technical terms are carefully excluded. The orthography of Johnson is followed, except in the omission of k in words ending with ic, as public. And the pronunciation of Walker is considered the standard, except in the words clerk, clerkship, cucumber, deaf, lieutenant, pour, raisin, and serjeant. Good usage in this country seems to have decided in favour of a more analogical pronunciation of these words than he has given them.
Where Walker has given more than one method of pronunciation, the Compiler has made his election.
In selecting the lessons in Reading, simplicity and purity have been sought both in style and sen
timent. Such only are inserted as are calculated to excite the attention of children, and such as are generally within the reach of their understanding.
Common names of persons and of distinguished places are inserted. Children should early be maue acquainted with their orthography and pronunciation.
In the 24th chapter, the first word of each couplet may be considered as a key to the sound of the succeeding word.
The Compiler has endeavoured to put the elementary lessons towards the close of the book such a form as to be easily committed to memo, y, and retained. In preparing them, he has made use of the language of other persons whenever it met his own views.
Perhaps there is no way to express the Abbreviations so clearly as to supersede the necessity of explanation by the teacher. Children should be taught that the same initial or abbreviation sometimes stands for different words, and the same words are represented by different abbreviations. They should also be taught where they are used.
Questions on some of the chapters for the examination of the pupils are annexed, which it is hoped will contribute to the ease of the instructer, and the advancement of the scholar.
THOMAS J. LEE.