Slike strani
PDF
ePub

meetings (or 167 for this group if the 38 kitchen garden classes are counted). Of 804 household arts classes and clubs reported in settlements, 55 per cent are in sewing and the needle arts, 24 per cent in foods, and 20 per cent in other household matters.

1

Settlements are just now concerned with improving the character of their instruction related to the home. An extensive survey of settlement activities as related to the problem of helping young women just entering industry to find themselves in industrial, social, and home relationships has just been made by the settlements and published under the title, "Young Working Girls." It shows that there is often an ominous break in helpful relations between this young working girl of 14, 16, or 18 and her parents; the home of her parents does not furnish the steadying influence and the intimate knowledge of industry, amusements, and friendships which such a young woman needs; finally she comes into the experiences of her own home unprepared for them. The constructive suggestions give a large place to training for home life in the necessary "education in the realities."

**

It is believed that the attractive power in domestic matters can best be increased by changing the emphasis from cooking to homemaking. Mastery over its technique should be shown as an asset toward a really successful match, and a sane view of marriage presented. Model apartments and cottages should be furnished in connection with every settlement, and ought to be developed as a part of the public system of education as quickly as possible. Instruction should be given in the sources, constituents, values, and qualities of food; in the sanitary care of the household; in the upbringing of children; in the various arts and crafts connected with furnishing. The model apartments should also be made the center of a scheme of hospitality, so that the work itself may become associated with interesting and stimulating social relations."

Definite action is being taken to improve the teaching of household arts in connection with settlements. Teachers College, Pratt Institute, and Lewis Institute, Chicago, each provide opportunities for practice teaching in settlements. Particularly significant is the provision at Simmons College, Boston, of opportunities for student teaching in settlements arranged at the request of the settlements of Boston in the effort to improve the quality of their instruction in household arts. Thirteen settlements cooperate, and 25 seniors and 15 special students have this year secured field experience under a supervisor who resides in one of the settlements. A graded system of lessons extending through three years is provided. The children are mostly under 14 years of age, but it is hoped to carry them on

1 Young Working Girls. A summary of evidence from 2,000 social workers, edited for the National Federation of Settlements by Robert A. Woods and Albert J. Kennedy. Boston. Houghton Mifflin. 1913.

Op. cit., pp. 155, 162, 164.

through "the baffling years from 14 to 18." Attempts are made to follow the instruction into the homes, and special problems such as Italian and Jewish dietaries have been attacked.1

Section 6. VISITING HOUSEKEEPERS OR DOMESTIC EDUCATORS.

There was introduced a few years ago, by the Society for Improving the Condition of the Poor in New York, a type of home teaching in needy families which consists of sending to the home a trained. dietitian to give instruction on food values and practical cookery when failure in household management seems to be the source of the difficulty. The plan has now been adopted in many communities and undertaken by different organizations. The Young Women's Christian Association, of Cleveland, Ohio; the Associated Charities, of Detroit; the North American Civic League for Emigrants, Buffalo; and certain philanthropic societies in Chicago, and in Cambridge, Roxbury, and Boston, Mass., have undertaken similar work. From the original teaching of practical food management, the work has broadened out until it covers the whole field of household management, including child care, sanitation, making of clothing, household expenditures and accounts; in fact, remedial instruction in every field of the household. The advantages of such work are obvious. It reaches the present generation without waiting for the children to get instruction in the schools. It reaches the needy families. It is eminently practical. Measured by results in terms of cost, it seems to be more than justifying itself. There are valuable reports of this work in the Journal of Home Economics, December, 1913, and February, 1914. The work of the rural household demonstrator is a similar undertaking.

Section 7. HOUSEKEEPING CENTERS FOR THE TEACHING OF HOUSEHOLD ARTS.

The Association of Practical Housekeeping Centers, of New York, was organized by Miss Mabel Hyde Kittredge for the maintainance of model flats where children, young women, and mothers might secure training in homemaking. The flats are furnished with model equipment within a limited range of cost. A worker is sometimes in residence, and classes are organized for children in the afternoons and

1 College extension in domestic science, Robert Woods. Journal of Home Economies, 6, 41. See also Hyams, Isabel F. The Louisa M. Alcott Club. In Lake Placid conference on home economics. Proceedings, 1900, pp. 18-23. The teaching of home economics in social settlements. In Lake Placid conference on home economics. Proceedings, 1905, pp. 54-62.

2 The economic value of the visiting dietitian. Home Economics, 1 (1909), p. 71.

Winifred Stuart Gibbs. Journal of

for older girls in the evenings. Miss Kittredge's "Housekeeping Notes" explains the method of instruction.1

The housekeeping flat has been introduced in various cities as a method of teaching the household arts in connection with settlements, public schools, or continuation schools, and other educational enterprises. It is noteworthy that the idea of using a house or apartment fully furnished as the teaching equipment for household-arts instruction is apparently receiving widespread adoption throughout the whole country. Not only public schools, but also normal schools, colleges, and technical schools are providing practice houses or apartments; and rural schools and industrial companies are establishing home centers. In this, American schools are following the precedent set by English teaching of household

arts.

One critic of the neighborhood flats as a method of home betterment has said that the model flat will never fulfill its mission until a model family is found to keep it, so that it may become a model home as well as a model house. The flats have ordinarily been occupied during the daytime by the teacher, although in some instances the teacher has been resident in the flat and in this way has made it a home.

The housekeeping-center idea is entirely applicable to rural districts. The rural-school teacher who makes her home a center of informal teaching and an opportunity for bringing better equipment and methods to the attention of others; the model cottage as a domestic science laboratory at the consolidated school; and the demonstration farm, which must have a demonstration farmhouse and housekeeper upon it, as well as a farmer expert, are some forms which the housekeeping center is bound to take in the rural districts.

Section 8. NURSES AND HOME BETTERMENT.

The work of the nurse was originally a household art, and it is altogether appropriate that this modern specialized profession of nursing should make its contribution to better homemaking. The visiting nurse, school nurse, rural nurse, and other types of visiting nurse teacher go directly into the private home and have an opportunity to render aid there which is only rivaled by the work of the visiting housekeeper, whose field embraces that of the whole household. The nurse indeed often has a special advantage, since her care of the sick opens the way most naturally for informal instruction on all matters concerning the home. The new plan whereby the services

1" Housekeeping Notes," by Mabel H. Kittredge. Whitcomb & Barrows, Boston.

of the visiting nurse are being introduced into communities on a selfsupporting basis on the plan of charging a small fee to the individual family has much promise of widening the field occupied, and it is not too much to hope that in the future the visiting nurse as helper and teacher will come to be a common assistant during illness in the humblest home in every community. The cooperation of the visiting nurse is well illustrated by the Visiting Nurses' Association, of Boston, which supplements the specialized service of the nurse by visits of the general housekeeping teacher in cases where the fundamental difficulty is ignorance and inefficiency in the household arts.

The nurse as a teacher of home nursing and in household problems of illness and child care is also performing a very useful service as, for example, in the continuation instruction for mothers instituted by the Rochester (N. Y.) public schools and the course in infant hygiene and feeding given by nurses of the New York City Board of Health to mothers weekly at recreation piers, public playgrounds, and social centers.1

Section 9. THE DAY NURSERY AND TRAINING IN CHILD CARE.

The day nursery has been developed in urban communities to take care of the child of the working mother who must earn a supplemental income, because of the temporary or permanent disability of the main wage earner. Those concerned with many nurseries have made it a fundamental point in their creed not to accept the care of children in families where the man is at work. Sound policy demands that the man's earning capacity be increased rather than that the housewife go out from the home and earn supplemental wages. There are numberless cases, however, in every goodsized community, in which there is no man wage earner or in which the man is temporarily disabled and the woman must earn. It is in such cases that the nursery can help the home without injuring it. The nursery has also attempted a positive service to the home in providing instruction to mothers in child care. Similar instruction has been developed at milk stations, dispensaries, hospitals, and other institutions which come in touch with mothers. A few nurseries, as the Fitch Creche, at Buffalo (recently closed), and the Manhattanville Nursery, of New York City, have attempted to develop schools for girls and young women in the care of infants and small children, with the idea of preparing them for professional service as nursemaids.

1 For the transfer of the nurses' art to the home, see the discussion of the teaching of home nursing in connection with home economics elsewhere, Part III of this report, Bulletin, 1914, No. 38, p. 56.

Section 10. HOME-ECONOMICS EXTENSION IN INDUSTRIAL COMMUNI

TIES.1

An effort to improve living conditions as a means to increased industrial effiency is appealing to many far-sighted business men. Schoolmen see that education for better living must include among its objects reaching the working family here and now. The industrial department of the Young Men's Christian Association is experimenting with domestic-science teaching in mining and other industrial communities in West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere. The United States Steel Co. has introduced the model housekeeping center into its welfare work at the Lambert mine in the Connellsville district of Pennsylvania and at Gary, W. Va.

A striking example of experiment in this field is the extension work of Winthrop Normal and Industrial College, Rock Hill, S. C., for "mill villages," which includes two special workers, Mr. James L. Carberry, the "special agent of mill village improvement in connection with the United States Department of Agriculture," introducing home gardening work, and Miss Mary E. Frayser, in charge of "home-economics extension work in rural, school, and mill communities." Miss Frayser has kindly furnished information regarding the home economics extension work in mill communities.

In some towns the work is begun without paid assistants, under local leadership, as at the Aragon and Manchester Mills at Rock Hill, S. C. In other towns some local organization furnishes leadership. The King's Daughters at Spartanburg have been the means of erecting a welfare building, with auditorium, classroom, and mother's clubroom. In other towns a paid teacher is supplied, who devotes part of her time to the direction of the community work centering in the school, and secures such local assistance in leadership as she can; such a situation is found at the Pacolet Mills, Pacolet, S. C., where the cottage is used regularly for domesticscience lessons by the schools. In some of the towns a trained worker is put in charge of all the activities which radiate from the welfare house, as at the Hamilton Carhartt Community at Rock Hill, or the Brogan Mills at Anderson, S. C. At the Hamilton Carhartt Mills, Rock Hill, a domestic science graduate is provided, who has charge of a community house, also given by the mills; there she conducts a morning class for children below school age, a woman's club one afternoon a week, a children's story-telling club one afternoon, a sewing club once a week, a night school for the three R's twice a week, a young peoples' social evening once a week, and in addition does friendly visiting in the homes.

1 See also extension work of colleges, Part III of this report, Bulletin, 1914, No. 38.

« PrejšnjaNaprej »