Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 78.djvu/619

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THE MANUAL ARTS

produce complete deterioration in the individual of nervous instability may, in the person of better hereditary endowment, result in nothing more serious than a temporary nervous break-down, "a slump of relative inactivity" (Meyer), or some other manifestation tending to rob life of its due zest and render success more difficult. To escape such dangers, every individual needs to be taught to "avail himself of the power of the concrete." We must find for every child the level where he can function successfully if we would have him escape the shocks of disappointment, the habits of failure and the resulting inactivity, daydreaming, vain wishing and chasm between thinking and doing. It behooves us "to make doing just as attractive as knowing." and to explore ways and means of enlarging the child's opportunities for the accomplishment of simple, wholesome and enjoyable things. Every person can be taught to do something well and take pleasure in doing it, and the result will contribute much more to the person's own mental balance and to the welfare of the world in general than will a smouldering volcano of sentiment and frothy, but inactive desire.