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Educ T 759.03.510
HARVARD COLLEGE LIBRARY
GINN & COMPANY
COPYRIGHT, 1903, BY LEONARD LEMMON.
An attempt is made in this, the Second Book of OUR COUNTRY'S READERS, to present material that is interesting to the child. The mere process of getting thought from the printed page is task enough to tax his powers to the utmost; if we add to the great difficulties of this process, tasks for study in history, science, and the arts, he goes to his reading with aversion. On the other hand, in the world of the imagination and the emotions, he is very much at home. "Trailing clouds of glory do we come," as Wordsworth has it. If we give him sufficient material from this magic world of the imagination, he will brave the difficulties of the technical process cheerfully and successfully. Fortunately, this old, gray world of ours has a great storehouse of literature simple enough in conception, buoyant enough in spirit, and warm enough in color to fascinate the child. The work of the editor of such a primary book as this, is to make a proper selection from this storehouse and to present it in language simple enough for the child at this stage of his development in the art of reading.
The "Mother Goose Melodies" form, perhaps, as good an introduction to real poetry as can be found. They are freely used here. They are followed by a few examples of poetry more serious in purpose and in art.
The fables included are modified from the forms in which adults know them, so that the story is somewhat extended and the didactic tendency is not so insistent. This selection presents some of the old Greek myths, the more modern fables of the kind Æsop gave us and, last, an American fable from our own Mr. Harris.
Fairy stories find representation in "Cinderella " and "Jack and the Beanstalk "—and in two old favorites that may as well find their classification here, “The Three Bears" and "Little Red Riding Hood."
Stories with an historical basis and setting are "William Tell," "Pocahontas," "Virginia Dare " and "The Holy Child."
Some plain lessons of our own day are "The Faithful Kitten," "The Two Dolls," "How Jamie Ran Away," A Sled Race" and "A Christmas Story."
The version of Uncle Remus's story of "Brother Rabbit Hears a Big Noise" is published by permission of the author, Mr. Joel Chandler Harris, and of the publishers, Messrs. Houghton, Mifflin & Co.