Gateway to the Classics: The Puritan Twins by Lucy Fitch Perkins
The Puritan Twins by  Lucy Fitch Perkins

Suggestions to Teachers

The Puritan Twins will admirably supplement the study of American history and geography in grades 6 and 7. The nation-wide revival of interest in all that concerns the Pilgrim Fathers, begun at the time of the Tercentenary in 1920, will continue for many years.

Whether children are able to trace their ancestry back to the little band that crossed the Atlantic in the Mayflower, or whether they trace it to voyagers of a less remote period—and the other volumes in the Twins Series are closely linked with many of these later ones—their interest in the days of the forefathers of our country should be the same; for these early settlers gave to America the spirit of liberty, a respect for law and organized government, and a standard of clean living and right thinking which it is our duty to preserve and to pass on to coming generations.

The best suggestions to teachers consist of brief and helpful references to authoritative books that will give an accurate picture of the early days of our country in the making and of the Pilgrim country as it is to-day. Properly presented to pupils, the material gleaned from these books will help them to form a more definite idea of what every American should do to preserve intact the national peace and prosperity which is their heritage.

In the following list, titles marked with an asterisk contain material which can be understandingly read by the pupils themselves. It will be better to have the teacher read to the class from the others.

Readings In American History And Government

*Tappan's Elementary History of Our Country, Chapters 4 to 9 inclusive. These deal with the whole period of colonization.

Thwaites and Kendall's History of the United States for Schools. Chapters 3 to 9 inclusive. This is a more advanced book which amplifies the story. There are valuable suggestions for reading in standard literature.

Guitteau's Preparing for Citizenship. Chapter 19 is of great inspirational value.

*Webster's Americanization and Citizenship. The following paragraphs set forth American ideals in their origin and development: 44, 52, 53, 54, 55, 63, 73, 117-121.

*Tappan's Our European Ancestors. Chapters 16-20 inclusive. These describe the European rivalries which influenced the colonization of America.

*Tappan's Little Book of Our Flag. Particularly chapters 1 and 2 respectively, "The Flags that Brought the Colonists," and "The Pine Tree Flag and Others."

Griffis's Young People's History of the Pilgrims. The conditions which led to the sailing of the Pilgrims are clearly sketched and emphasis is laid on the viewpoint of the Pilgrim boys and girls.

*Griffis's The Pilgrims in Their Three Homes: England, Holland, and America. The life of the Pilgrims in church and school, at work and play, including their flight and refuge, is fully described.

*Tappan's American Hero Stories. Five stories center around the colonists, of whom, of course, Miles Standish is one.

*Tappan's Letters from Colonial Children. These letters give an idea of life in representative American colonies seen through a child's eyes. They present a vivid and historically accurate picture of the times.

*Hawthorne's Grandfather's Chair. These stories have never grown old or tiresome to children—and probably never will. No stories ever gave a better introduction to our history from the settlement of New England to the War for Independence.

*Deming and Bemis's Stories of Patriotism. A series of stirring tales of patriotic deeds by Americans from the time of the Colonists to the present.

*Bemis's The Patriotic Reader. The selections cover the history of our country from the discovery of America to our entrance into the Great War. They give one a familiarity with literature—new and old—that presents the highest ideals of freedom and justice.

*Longfellow's Courtship of Miles Standish. A well annotated edition is published in the Riverside Literature Series.

Jane G. Austin's The Old Colony Stories. These novels, dealing with the early settlers of Plymouth, have taken their place among the American classics, and their combination of romantic interest, real literary quality, and historical accuracy has won for them wide popularity. The titles alone bring before the mind a vision of the most famous colonists: Betty Alden, A Nameless Nobleman, Standish of Standish, Dr. LeBaron and his Daughters, David Alden's Daughter and Other Stories.

Fiske's The Beginnings of New England. This is one of the most readable of the authoritative histories.

Readings In Geography

Edwards's The Old Coast Road. The South Shore road from Boston to Plymouth is one of the most historic roads in the country. Starting from Boston, Miss Edwards guides her readers through Dorchester Heights, Milton and the Blue Hills, Quincy with its Shipbuilding, Weymouth, Hingham, Cohasset, the Scituate Shore, Marshfield, the Home of Daniel Webster, Duxbury and Kingston. She concludes with an informing chapter on Plymouth.

Edwards's Cape Cod, New and Old. Delightful essays on the Cape—brief, entertaining, and containing precisely those facts which every reader wants to know.


*Longfellow's Courtship of Miles Standish. Dramatized. This is equipped with suggestions for stage settings, properties and costumes.

*Austin's Standish of Standish. Dramatized. Historically true portrayals of character and atmosphere. There are suggestions for costumes and other details of acting.

Baker's The Pilgrim Spirit. This book contains the words spoken by the characters in the various episodes comprising the Pageant presented at Plymouth, Massachusetts, during the summer of 1921. It re-creates in masterly fashion the atmosphere of old colony times.

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