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tant developments in high-school teaching will probably come in this field.
The importance of instruction in any of these subjects is only suggested by the number of courses given; it is better measured by the number of hours of teaching actually devoted to the individual subject. In columns 2-5 of Table 12 are given the minimum and maximum hours of instruction, the means, limits which include 50 per cent of the courses, and the modes, each in terms of the hours of instruction devoted to the subject, for these 19 subjects taught in high schools. The most important single number as a measure of the amount of time usually given to any subject or topic is the mean number of hours (column 3, Table 12), and we shall compare the mean hours for the various subjects.
Elementary sewing and dressmaking are the subjects which command the largest number of hours of instruction-108 hours as expressed by the mean. The typical elementary cookery course in high school as measured by the mean is given 96 hours of teaching, and the advanced cookery course 80 hours, while food chemistry is given 60 hours and dietetics 40 hours (and in nearly one-half the cases both these courses are given in the same schools); finally, cookery for the sick has a mean time allotment of 26 hours. The five food courses, if given together in their typical form, would require 302 hours of teaching (the sum of the mean hours of instruction given to each of these courses), while the five clothing courses (sewing, dressmaking, millinery, textiles, costume design) would similarly require 408 hours, a third more than the food courses, and the nine other courses and subjects (house, household management, decoration, accounts, housewifery, nursing, care of children, laundry, sanitation) would require for typical instruction 253 hours. For typical courses in all 19 divisions of home economics as now given in American high schools there would therefore be required 963 hours of instruction (the sum of the mean hours allotted these subjects). Assuming that a student spent 12 to 15 hours a week under instruction in classroom exercises, it is evident that two years of 36 to 40 weeks of study devoted exclusively to home economics courses would no more than exhaust the possibilities of this new subject. No one would propose organizing such a plan of continuous, exclusive study of home science for the high-school girl, but the facts adduced show that there is a wealth of material in this practical arts field which can be combined in proper order with English, social and natural science, and other high-school subjects to give a desirable four-year high-school curriculum with a center of home science which will be rich in general values, but specialized toward the home as a vocational field.
TABLE 12.-High-school courses and topics in home economics-Hours of instruction-General tendencies.
252 per cent courses.
54, 57, 72, 80, 108.
40, 72, 120, 200.
72, 80, 108, 180.
1 55 per cent courses.
(B) Time allotments by groups-Foods, clothing, and shelter and management. By combining the hours of instruction of the different household economics subjects into the three groups-food, clothing, shelter and management—the following facts are secured (Table 13): Of 288 high schools 257 (89 per cent) give courses in foods, 232 (80.5 per cent) give courses in clothing, and 72 (25 per cent) have courses in shelter and management. The total amount of instruction given in foods varies for the 257 schools from 24 to 1,200 hours; the median amount is 189 hours. The total number of hours of instruction in clothing varies for the 232 schools from 14 to 1,240 hours; the mean value is 175-180 hours. The total number of hours of instruction in shelter and management for 72 schools varies from 3 to 680 hours; the median value is 54-62 hours. It is evident that food appears as a subject of instruction in high schools in about 10 per cent more schools than clothing, the former being found in about 9 out of 10 schools that teach household arts, and the latter in 8 out of 10. The subject of shelter and household management appears in about one-fourth the schools that teach household arts. Were typical high-school instruction in these three main divisions of subject matter to be given, it would require approximately 180 hours in foods, 180 hours in clothing, and 60 hours in shelter and management.
TABLE 13.-Total hours instruction in foods, clothing, and shelter and management in 288 high schools-General tendencies.
Number of schools offering..
400-449. 450-499. 500-549.
Food courses. Clothing.
54; 80, 108;
1,000-1,049. 1,050-1,099_ 1,100-1,149. 8 1,150-1,199. 17 1,200-1,249. 14 1,250-1,299. 14
TABLE 14.-Time allotments for all subjects combined, by total hours.
232 80.5 14; 1,240 175-180
72; 180; 288;
(C) Time allotments-All subjects combined.-From 288 high schools the data were secured for the total number of hours' instruction given in all subjects combined in household science and art. The instruction ranges from 25 to 2,560 hours in total amount in different schools. An abbreviated distribution follows:
Shelter and management.
From the detailed distribution the mean was found to be 304-315 hours of instruction, and this may be taken as the typical number of hours of home-economics teaching actually given in the average American high school at present. Half the schools give between 144 and 576 hours.
Section 9. DATA ON HIGH-SCHOOL CURRICULA.
(A) Required versus elective high-school courses.-Of 279 schools answering, 39 (13.9 per cent) require some one or more courses in household arts of all girls; 240 offer all household-arts courses as elective. The question whether any household-arts courses should be required is a fundamental one on which two opinions are possible. If one holds to the elective system absolutely, of course one would have no place for a required home-science course. If one believes that certain courses should be required without individual choice, household science would seem to merit approval as a uniform requirement for high-school girls. When a requirement has been set,
it varies, of course, with local conditions; in one school all girls except those in the classical course take household science; in another only the girls in the English course must take this subject; the requirement is set as one year of food and one year of clothing instruction in certain schools; in others one year only is required, and the balance are elective. This last seems worthy of recommendation. If the household science is well taught, it will secure its own registration after the first year; if it can not so secure registration, the instruction given in that school probably does not merit further compulsory attendance.
In discussions of the elective system absolute freedom in election. is likely to be favored by the sentimental argument for "freedom," "liberty of choice," etc. It is well to remember that some things are imperative, whether we like to do them and choose them or not; and among such unavoidable things of life are the needs of food, clothing, shelter, care in sickness, preventive hygiene, sanitation, and the experiences which center in the home.
(B) Percentage of high-school students in elective courses in home economics.-For 196 high schools reporting the percentages of students in elective home-economics courses the mean percentage was 33 to 35 per cent, and 50 per cent of the schools reported percentages between 20 per cent and 50 per cent. This indicates that in high schools offering courses in home economics at least a third of the girls are commonly taking the courses. In 41 per cent of the schools one-half or more of all girl students take elective homeeconomics courses. The distribution of percentages reported follows:
TABLE 15.-Percentage of students electing home economics in high schools.
(C) The four-year high-school course in home economics.-Of 214 high schools furnishing data, 60 report that they offer a four-year course in home economics, and 154 report that they do not offer such a course. Approximately, therefore, one-fifth (19.6 per cent) report such a course; doubtless a fourth or more actually offer it. Of the 60 schools reporting the four-year course, 43 state the percentage of
girls in the high school who take the four-year home-economics course; it varies from 5 to 100 per cent. The mean percentage is 25, and one-half of the schools have from 20 to 33 per cent of their girl students in the four-year home-economics course.
(D) Vocational high-school curricula in household arts.-The inquiry as to vocational high-school curricula presented a general negative result. There were the following affirmative answers, but the lack of agreement as to the meaning of "vocational" (used here as meaning preparation for earning a livelihood, but including homemakers' courses) probably makes some of these returns dubious: Dressmaking courses, 11 schools; millinery, 6; costume design, 3; household management, 5; nurses' preparatory, 2; child's nurse, 2; cook's course, 5. Chicago, Boston, and other cities report dressmaking and millinery courses; Mount Vernon, Ind., Columbus, Ga., Cadillac, Mich., Newton, Mass., and other schools report courses in cooking; Newton, the preparatory course for nurses, and other courses; and Passaic, N. J., and Syracuse, N. Y., courses for the child nurse. These vocational curricula, it is very evident, are just beginning to be explored as to possibilities in high-school teaching.
Section 10. HIGH-SCHOOL TEACHING SEPARATE DEPARTMENTS, DEPARTMENTAL COOPERATION, HOME COOPERATION.
(A) Departmental teaching of home economics in high schools.— Of 230 high schools furnishing data, in 160 (69.6 per cent) there are no departmental divisions in the teaching of home economics—i. e., the same teacher gives instruction in both food and clothing courses. In 70 schools (30.4 per cent) there is a departmental organizationi. e., one instructor teaches the food courses exclusively, and so for other divisions. In 4 schools there are both types of teaching, the specialist in the single field and the teacher who works in several fields. Specialization can only take place in the larger high schools; given the possibility of specialized teaching, and its desirability will not be questioned. The figures quoted probably express the fact that specialized teaching is possible in about 3 out of 10 high schools reporting, rather than suggest the adoption of it as desirable by so small a proportion and its rejection by the large majority of schools.
(B) Cooperation with other departments in high-school teaching of home economics.-Economy requires wherever possible coordination between academic, scientific, and other teaching departments in high schools and the practical arts departments, whether of industry, agriculture, home economics, or what not. The two most important department interrelations for home economics teaching are (a) those between chemistry and home science, especially in foods and cookery; and (b) those between fine arts and clothing and house decora