Few mothers can over-estimate the influence which the companionship of books exerts in youth upon the habits and tastes of their children, and no mother who has the welfare of her children at heart will neglect the important work of choosing the proper books for them to read, while they are under her care. She should select for them such as will both interest and instruct, and this should be done during the early years, before their minds shall have imbibed the pernicious teachings of bad books and sensational novels. The poison imbibed from bad books works so secretly that their influence for evil is even greater than the influence of bad associates. The mother has it in her power to make such books the companions and friends of her children as her good judgment may select, and to impress upon them their truths, by conversing with them about the moral lessons or the intellectual instructions they contain. A taste may be easily cultivated for books on natural science and for history, as well as for those that teach important and wholesome lessons for the young, such as are contained in the works of Mrs. Edgeworth, Mrs. Child, Mrs. Yonge, and many other books written for the young.
Woman’s Higher Education.
It has been seen that in the rearing and training of her children, woman has a great work to perform; that in this work she exerts an incalculable influence upon untold numbers, and that she molds the minds and characters of her sons and daughters. How important, then, that she should cultivate her mental faculties to the highest extent, if for no other reason than to fit herself the better for the performance of this great duty of educating her children. How important it is, also, that she should look to the higher education of her daughters, who, in turn, will become mothers of future generations, or may, perhaps, by some vicissitude of fortune, become dependent upon their own resources for support. With the highest culture of the mental faculties, woman will be best enabled to faithfully perform whatever she may undertake.
TRAIN YOUNG WOMEN TO SOME OCCUPATION.
Owing to the changes in social and industrial life which have crowded many women from their homes into business and public life, women must train for their branch of labor as men train for their work, if they wish to attain any degree of success. Even where women have independent fortunes, their lives will be all the happier if they have been trained to some occupation, that, in case of reverses, may be made a self-sustaining one. A young woman who is able to support herself, increases her chances for a happy marriage, for, not being obliged to rely upon a husband for support or for a home, she is able to judge calmly of an offer when it comes, and is free to accept or decline, because of her independence. Women are capable of and adapted to a large number of employments, which have hitherto been kept from them, and some of these they are slowly wrenching from the hands of the sterner sex. In order that women may enter the ranks of labor which she is forcing open to herself, she needs a special education and training to fit her for such employment.