Of all the innumerable attitudes which have been taken towards the educational avalanche which commences its precipitous descent late in September, there is none, perhaps, more harmful than that which assumes that only an indifferent push is needed to start the mossy stones rolling, and that thereafter the perpetrators of this annual landslide need only sit back and direct the courses which the little stones choose to take.
That such an attitude should exist is due chiefly to the fact that it is admittedly difficult to wax as enthusiastic over the same lecture the tenth or even the fifth time as it was the first or second. But what no one except the student can understand is that for him it is the first time; he has never studied just this material, he has never read this book, he has never heard this lecturer, and he is making a sincere effort the first few weeks to enjoy it. For him there is everything to gain, and nothing to lose; and it may not be entirely his fault if in the end he lose.
It is, however, presumptuous to suppose that a puff of enthusiasm from the rostrum would be enough to hold a student's interest. It will only be when both the teacher and the taught recognize the newness of each topic to the student that an academic millennium will be attained. By that time, both may be sliding together.