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Elements of Civil Government   By:

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ELEMENTS OF CIVIL GOVERNMENT

A Text Book for Use in Public Schools, High Schools and Normal Schools and a Manual of Reference for Teachers

by

ALEX. L. PETERMAN

Late Principal and Professor of Civil Government in the Normal School of the Kentucky State College, and Member of the Kentucky State Senate

New York Cincinnati Chicago American Book Company

Revised to 1916.

DEDICATION.

To the thousands of devoted Teachers in every part of the land, who are training the boys and girls of to day to a true conception of American citizenship, and to a deeper love for our whole country, this little book is dedicated by a Brother in the work.

PREFACE.

This text book begins "at home." The starting point is the family, the first form of government with which the child comes in contact. As his acquaintance with rightful authority increases, the school, the civil district, the township, the county, the State, and the United States are taken up in their order.

The book is especially intended for use in the public schools. The plan is the simplest yet devised, and is, therefore, well adapted to public school purposes. It has been used by the author for many years, in public schools, normal schools, and teachers' institutes. It carefully and logically follows the much praised and much neglected synthetic method. All students of the science of teaching agree that beginners in the study of government should commence with the known, and gradually proceed to the unknown. Yet it is believed this is the first textbook that closely follows this method of treating the subject.

The constant aim has been to present the subject in a simple and attractive way, in accordance with sound principles of teaching that children may grow into such a knowledge of their government that the welfare of the country may "come home to the business and bosoms" of the people.

The recent increase of interest among the people upon the subject of government is a hopeful sign. It will lead to a better knowledge of our political institutions, and hence give us better citizens. Good citizenship is impossible unless the people understand the government under which they live.

It is certainly strange that every State in the Union maintains a system of public schools for the purpose of training citizens, and that the course of study in so many States omits civil government, the science of citizenship.

The author's special thanks are due Hon. Joseph Desha Pickett, Ph.D., Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky, for the suggestion which led to the preparation of the work and for excellent thoughts upon the plan. The author also desires to confess his obligation to President James K. Patterson, Ph.D., and Professor R. N. Roark, A.M., of the Kentucky State College, Lexington, for valuable suggestions as to the method of treatment and the scope of the book.

The author has derived much assistance from the many admirable works upon the same subject, now before the country. But he has not hesitated to adopt a treatment different from theirs when it has been deemed advisable. He submits his work to a discriminating public, with the hope that he has not labored in vain in a field in which so many have wrought.

ALEX. L. PETERMAN.

A FEW WORDS TO TEACHERS.

1. PURPOSE OF THE STUDY. Every school should teach, and every child should study, the principles of our government, in order:

1. That by knowing his country better he may learn to love it more. The first duty of the school is to teach its pupils to love "God, home, and native land."

2. That the child may learn that there is such a thing as just authority; that obedience to it is right and manly; that we must learn to govern by first learning to obey.

3. That he may know his rights as a citizen, and, "knowing, dare maintain;" that he may also know his duties as a citizen, and, knowing, may perform them intelligently and honestly.

4. That he may understand the sacredness of the right of suffrage, and aid in securing honest elections and honest discharge of official duties... Continue reading book >>




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