Books > Old Books >The Elson Readers Book Six (1910)


Page 003

PREFACE

This book is based on the belief that an efficient reader for the sixth grade must score high when tested on five fundamental features: quality of literature; variety of literature; organization of literature; quantity of literature; and definite helps sufficient to make the text a genuine tool for classroom use.
First among these features is the essential that the foundation of the book must be the acknowledged masterpieces of American and British authors. American boys and girls may be depended upon to read current magazines and newspapers, but if they are ever to have their taste and judgment of literary values enriched by farrail,iarity with the classics of our literature, the schools must provide the opportunity. This ideal does not mean the exclusion of well established present-day writers, but it does mean that the core of the school reader should be the rich literary heritage that has won recognition for its enduring value. Moreover, these masterpieces must come to the pupil in complete units, not in mere excerpts or garbled "cross-sections"; for the pupil in his school life should gain some real literary possessions.
A study of the contents of The F,lson Reader, Book Six, will show how consistently its authors have based the book on this sound test of quality. The works of the acknowledged "makers" of our literature have been abundantly drawn upon to furnish a foundation of great stories and poems, gripping in interest and well within the powers of child-appreciation in this grade.
Variety is fundamental to a well-rounded course of reading. If the school reader is to provide for all the purposes that a collection of literature for this grade should serve, it must contain material covering at least the following types: (1) literature representing both British and American authors; (2) some of the best modern poetry and prose as well as the literature of the past; (3) important race

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