Experiments in the application of pragmatic principles to the teaching of English composition
Alexander, Carter, 1881-1965
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Composition, in the sense of meaning the organization and expression in language of one's thoughts, was an important activity of man at a very early time, for the reason that it was necessary to him in his struggle for existence; indeed, without it he could scarcely have outdistanced the other animals against whom he had to contend. It arose long before there were any schools and it would have continued and probably have improved greatly if they had never come into existence. So when schools did arise, it was very natural tor man to introduce into them some form of study which should represent the valuable composition experience he had accumulated in previous times. The need for the composition activity has increased with man's progress and consequently he has ever found more and more need for keeping a corresponding subject in his school curriculum, until now this branch is one of our most important school studies. If this study in our schools at the present time is to represent truly the experience for which it stands, it must conform to the basic principles underlying that experience and any true method of teaching the subject just take these principles into account.
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