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best direct the youthful steps of those already under our care, to that God who has graciously said, "I love them that love me, and they that seek me early shall find me,"
Many have been honorably discharged on account of family engage..ents, who are now filling the stations assigned them by providence with credit to themselves and to their instructors, Some there are that have wandered for the sake of novelty to other Schools, and others have been dismissed for careless and irregular conduct. By a law existing in the institution, every scholar who is absent three Sundays without parental leave, or on some other sufficient pretext, shall be expelled the School. Yet this is not enforced until proper means have, been used to reclaim the transgressor to the paths of duty; and if the desired effect is not then produced, it is evident that such cannot be retained, consistent with proper order and discipline.
Your committee have for some time been engaged in preparing for publication their Plan of Management, together with an extract from the trust deed, and other matters relative to the institution, which is now ready for the press; but the heavy demands upon the annual fund for other purposes have. contributed to retard its progress. They hope, however, soon to accomplish this desirable object, as the work is not only wanted for our own government, but has often been enquired for by others who are engaged in the formation of similar institutions.
A part of the chief rent has in the course of this year been exposed to public sale, which your committee have thought it advisable to purchase, as it was offered on advantageous terms.
It will be remembered that when the building was erected, the teachers engaged for themselves and scholars, to raise by subscription the sum of £500. Owing to a depression in trade at that time, this was left incomplete till the present year, when it was resumed, and they have now exceeded their original stipulation upwards of £82. This sum, with the balance in the hands of the treasurer of the building fund, amounting together to £322. 18s. 8d. is intended to be appropriated towards finishing a suite of rooms, for the convenience of instructing the writing classes. The estimate, however, which has been taken for this purpose, from the high price of timber, so far exceeds our present means for its completion, (amountting to nearly £700.) that it is unavoidably postponed till the value of that article is reduced. As the whole of the finished rooms are already occupied, two others will require fitting up immediately, for the reception of the adult classes. And when
it is also known that the large room, the committee room, and the general inspector's room, still remain in an unfinished state, we trust that no other appeal will be required to stimulate the never-failing liberality of our generous friends; but that they will shortly enable us to carry these extensive designs into
Your committee feel great satisfaction in having to announce, that His Royal Highness The Duke of Sussex, has signified his pleasure to become a patron of this institution, in conjunction with his Royal Brother, The, Duke of Kent. His Royal Highness has been pleased to express himself particularly gratified with the liberal and extended plan on which it is conducted; and in a communication by our worthy friend the Rev. Dr. Collyer, has further added, "that education appeared to him of so much moment, that no party restrictions ought to be laid upon it; and that he would support in common with this, every society which called forth the co-operation of different denominations, which left liberty of conscience to the children and their parents, which constituted the Bible the source of their religious information, and which suffered no creed to exclude any persons desirous of availing themselves of the blessings of instruction." This manly and emphatic declaration, including the sentiments of both the Royal Dukes, while it affords a convincing proof that their patronage of the Stockport Sunday School was not undertaken without serious and mature reflection, stands as another pleasing instance of that mild spirit of liberality and toleration, which has always distinguished the illustrious house of Brunswick.
Delivered from a tyranny the most formidable and oppressive, reviving Europe is again favored with the brightening prospect of happier days. An honorable peace, and we trust on the most permanent basis, at length rewards the persevering firmness of her illustrious conquerors. We may perhaps instructively consider, in what manner under God, this glorious event was brought to pass. It was not by the partial and feeble efforts of a single nation; for how often did we witness the futility of such attempts, while they were divided in council, and distinct in operation, but by the vigorous and united exertions of different powers, bearing in the face of all opposition, to one important point,
In every case union is strength, and if we are desirous of contracting the empire of darkness, and destroying the reign of Satan, we can only expect to succeed so far as our designs are influenced by unanimity and concord. Nothing contri
butes so much to weaken any cause, as strifes and divisions; but the adversary of man trembles when he sees christians in the bond of brotherhood, acting together for the overthrow of his power.
On this liberal ground of union, of which your institution was an early instance, we hope to remain firm, conscious that no other plan is so well adapted to promote the true interests of our undertaking. Amongst the numerous benevolent associations of the present day, it is with pleasure that we observe the formation of Sunday School Unions in almost every part of the kingdom; from the united exertions of which, the happiest results may be reasonably anticipated..
In the midst of our national mercies, let us not forget those awful judgments, which in their course over an afflicted world, but narrowly passed by us. If the dark clouds of divine indignation did not pour their fury on our country, they remained for a while in dreadful suspense over our heads :-but in the gap stood the faithful few;-the converted heathen interceded for the land that gave him the Bible:-the tears of ransomed Africa pleaded powerfully for her deliverer,—and their earnest supplications were heard. Amidst the convulsions which have shaken kingdoms to their centre, Britain has been graciously spared to complete her triumphs of mercy. Exalted in the rank of nations, she is still reserved by the Almighty, as "an herald of salvation to the ends of the earth." But while thus solicitous for the welfare of others, may her sons remember carefully "to cultivate that true piety which alone exalteth a nation; then shall her peace flow as a river, and her righteousness as the waves of the sea."
The Debt upon the Building Fund amounts to £2356.
MINUTES taken at the QUARTERLY MEETING of the SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION.
Question.-WHAT system of rewards is best adapted to
The Chairman stated, that in the internal regulations of a Sunday School, it should be a maxim, both as it respected rewards and punishments: Be sparing. If rewards were too plentifully bestowed, they would soon be reckoned as of little value, and cease to act as a stimulus to exertion. In the School which he superintended, besides the regular rewards of tickets and tracts, there had been once, about three years after the School was established, a grand reward day appointed. Notice of this was given a long time before the rewards were distributed, and a paper stuck up in a conspicuous situation, with a statement of the merits which would be rewarded.
1st. Reward.-Good Behaviour. Including regularity of attendance, and good conduct in School, in chapel, and at home. 2d. Reward. Scriptural subjects, and attention to sermons. Including the weekly subjects from the Bible, progress in understanding the scriptures, and endeavours to remember the sermons and addresses which they heard. This applies chiefly to the Bible and Testament classes.
3d. Reward.-Progress in learning. spelling, prayers, hymns, and catechism.
Including reading and
No child to have any reward unless he can say his prayers correctly.
The teachers having kept a regular account of their scholars, when the time for distributing the rewards was nearly arrived, they gave a list of the names of the children in each class who deserved rewards to the superintendent, and pointed out some book which they thought most suitable to the scholar's disposition, and most likely to do him good. One evening was appropriated to the distribution of these rewards, and the superintendent addressed the children as he gave them away. name of the child was written on the cover, with a statement of his merits and the date, as for example: "Samuel Sobermind. This book is given to him as a reward for his good behaviour in Sunday School, 1st January, 1814. David Diligence superintendant.*
A friend stated that in giving rewards, we should endeavour to steer clear of any thing which would beget pride. Most Schools were in the habit of circulating tickets with texts of scripture on them; these were like so many notes of hand payable on demand, and appeared far better than medals, merit tickets, and marks of honour round the neck. These tickets conveyed with them the word and the will of the Most High, and the children purchase with them serious tracts and books.
*. We received a few additional particulars since the meeting, but thought it best to insert them together.-EDITOR.
If the periods of transferring the tickets were less frequent than is commonly the case, it might be beneficial, as the children would then accumulate a larger stock. It was proper that some evening in the week should be appointed for receiving the tickets, that the Christian Sabbath might not be suffered to resemble a market day. Particular care should be taken when the children receive the reward tracts or books, to ascertain that they are read and understood; and it would be advisable to appoint a reward to those children who could give the best account of the books they had received.
A superintendent stated, that in his school he had abolished rewards. In a School to which he formerly belonged, two plans of reward had been adopted. The plan of tickets had been tried, but a very great evil was found from the children passing the tickets for money, and bartering them among themselves. Also the children demanded them as a right, instead of coming in an humble way to ask for them. The plan which had been adopted to supersede tickets was this: each teacher was provided with a book, on one side was a space for good marks, and the other for bad marks. At the end of the quarter these were cast up, and the first seven or eight children who had most good marks were rewarded according to their number. However, some of the children whose number of marks was nearly equal to the children who received rewards, felt much dissatisfaction. His present plan was, if a child comes constantly, to reward him by letting him come to writing aud cyphering in the week. The good child is rewarded by being continued in the school, the bad child is punished by being turned out.
The chairman stated, that the plan of tickets (even where as many as twelve were necessary to purchase a penny book), pressed very heavily on the finances of a Sunday School, He thought that peculiar care should be taken to suit the rewards to the minds and characters of those who received them; and that in the Bible and Testament classes, the improvement of the understanding should claim a higher reward than merely storing the memory. He suggested that bad behaviour, lateness, or irregularity of attendance, and neglect of learning should be punished by the deprivation of reward. Every child who had behaved well, and continued in the School three years, should on quitting it receive a Bible.
A teacher stated, that a circulating library afforded one of the best plans of bestowing rewards. Those children whose behaviour and improvement deserved it, received a ticket for the