Ellen G. White Writings

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Education, Page 275

Chapter 32—Preparation

“Study to show thyself approved unto God.”

The child's first teacher is the mother. During the period of greatest susceptibility and most rapid development his education is to a great degree in her hands. To her first is given opportunity to mold the character for good or for evil. She should understand the value of her opportunity, and, above every other teacher, should be qualified to use it to the best account. Yet there is no other to whose training so little thought is given. The one whose influence in education is most potent and far-reaching is the one for whose assistance there is the least systematic effort.

Those to whom the care of the little child is committed are too often ignorant of its physical needs; they know little of the laws of health or the principles of development. Nor are they better fitted to care for its mental and spiritual growth. They may be qualified to conduct business or to shine in society; they may have made creditable attainments in literature and science; but of the training of a child they have little knowledge. It is chiefly because of this lack, especially because of the early neglect of physical development, that so large a proportion of the human race die in infancy, and of those who reach maturity there are so many to whom life is but a burden.

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