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AMERICAN SCHOOL CLASS-BOOK,
ORTHOEPY, READING, AND SPEAKING;
TO THE COMPREHENSION OF YOUTH.
BY A. PICKET,
resident of the Incorporated Society of Teachers, and Member of the His-
LAST REVISED EDITION.
PUBLISHED BY A. & E. PICKET.
District of New-York, ss.
BE IT REMEMBERED, that on the twenty-fifth day of August, in the forty-fifth year of the Independence of the United States of America, ALBERT PICKET, of the said district, hath deposited in this office the title of a Book, the right whereof he claims as author and proprietor, in the words following, to wit:
"The JUVENILE MENTOR, or Select Readings; being American School Class-Book, No. 3. Containing Progressive Lessons in Orthoepy, Reading, and Speaking; adapted to the comprehension of Youth. By A. Picket, President of the Incorporated Society of Teachers, and Member of the Historical Society, in New-York; Senior Principal of Manhattan School; Author of the American School Class-Books, the Juvenile Spelling-Book, Analytical School-Grammar, &c."
In conformity to the Act of the Congress of the United States, entitled, "An act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of Maps, Charts, and Books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the time therein mentioned." And also to an Act, entitled, "An Act, supplementary to an Act, entitled, 'An act for the encouragement of Learning, by securing the copies of Maps, Charts, and Books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times therein mentioned, and extending the benefits thereof, to the arts of designing, engraving, and etching historical and other prints."
GILBERT LIVINGSTON THOMPSON,
In teaching the art of reading, the first objects of every preceptor should be, to make his pupils talk. correctly and naturally on the book; and to sweeten their tone of voice, by an elegant pronunciation, and a just inflection. A good reader (says a correct writer) is one who can perfectly comprehend, and readily enter into, the feelings of his author; consequently, he is one who has learned to think,species of knowledge seldom thought of in our schools, though it ought to be the first inculcated. Children, as soon as they can speak, are remarkable for expressing their own sentiments, in the genuine language of nature. Not an emphasis is misplaced, not an inflection of the voice is misapplied. But as soon as they begin to read, and express the thoughts and sentiments of others, how different is their execution !-The most unnatural habits are speedily acquired, which too often attend them through life. The only way to remedy these evils is, to give children such lessons in reading as are suited to their tender capacities, to teach them to make the sentiments, as it were, their own, and to
express them as they would to their playmates in telling a story. To this end has the selection of pieces, in the following pages, been made: and also to imbue the minds of the rising generation, with the pure principles and sentiments of virtue, piety, and patriotism.
1. Give the letters their proper sound.
2. Pronounce the vowels, a, e, i, o, u, clearly, giving to each its proper quantity.
3. The liquids, l, m, n, r, should be pronounced with a considerable degree of force.
4. Distinguish every accented letter or syllable by a particular stress of the voice.
5. Read audibly and distinctly, with a degree of deliberation suited to the subject.
6. Pause at the points a sufficient length of time, but not so long as to break that connexion which one part of a sentence has with another. 7. Give every sentence, and member of a sentence, that inflection of voice which tends to improve either the sound or the sense.
8. A thorough knowledge of the two slides or inflections of the voice ought to be obtained. Without a very accurate knowledge of these two slides, no very great progress in reading can possibly be made.
9. The inflections of the voice which accompany the pauses, are the stamina of all good reading or speaking; for whether we read or speak high or low, loud or soft, quickly or slowly, with or without the tones of a particular passion, the voice must rise or fall, or proceed in a continued monotony: so the rising and falling inflections must be considered as the axes on which the whole force and variety of reading or speaking turns. And a just mixture of these inflections is so important, that whenever they are neglected, the pronunciation becomes feeble, monotonous, and ungraceful. If a speaker elevates his voice too frequently, he contracts a squeaking tone; if he depresses it too often, he hurts the sense by breaking its connexion; and though a monotony may sometimes be used for the sake of variety, too frequent recourse to it would produce languor, listlessness, and inattention.