L. M. Montgomery On Principles And Practicalities

Specifically, on the gap between the two from one of the most influential books in my life as a teacher, a bit of needed late-winter, almost-spring, waning school-year encouragement.

“Oh, I don’t know. I’ve come so far short in so many things. I haven’t done what I meant to do when I began to teach last fall. I haven’t lived up to my ideals.”

“None of us ever do,” said Mrs. Allan with a sigh. “But then, Anne, you know what Lowell says, `Not failure but low aim is crime.’ We must have ideals and try to live up to them, even if we never quite succeed. Life would be a sorry business without them. With them it’s grand and great. Hold fast to your ideals, Anne.”

“I shall try. But I have to let go most of my theories,” said Anne, laughing a little. “I had the most beautiful set of theories you ever knew when I started out as a schoolma’am, but every one of them has failed me at some pinch or another.” ~ L. M. Montgomery, Anne of Avonlea

To the right, my beloved well-worn copy, given me at age twelve by my dear Aunt Lucy and Cousin Elizabeth. Perhaps the 70s cover dates me—perhaps there are more lovely covers to be had—but none could be a greater treasure to me, to the point that I searched out and bought all of the series that I could find with these covers.

 

Der Schulspaziergang by Albert Anker, 1872

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