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As early as 1872, counsel and instruction regarding Christian education began to come from the pen of Ellen G. White to Seventh-day Adventists. The first comprehensive article on this subject, entitled “Proper Education,” is found in Testimonies for the Church 3:131-160. In the thirty pages of this article may be found, in embryo or in well-developed form, every fundamental principle which should govern the training and instruction of children and youth. Revolutionary as some of the views expressed may have seemed to be at the time of writing, they are today recognized and advocated by progressive educational thinkers. Seventh-day Adventists may justly regard themselves as highly favored in that such a fundamental outline of educational principles appeared so early in their literature.
That brief yet comprehensive outline, given to lead us into right educational paths, has been followed through the years by further, more detailed counsels, reiterating the principles first set forth, expanding their application, and urging their adoption. Christian Education and Special Testimonies on Education, two small works published in the nineties, carried these messages to the people.
Finally, in 1903, Education, a masterpiece in the field of character education, was presented to the general reading public by Ellen G. White, and through many printings and translations it has conveyed its helpful messages to thousands in this and in other lands. But the special detailed instruction, specifically addressed to Seventh-day Adventists, could not well be included in this popular volume intended for more general distribution; and the earlier works having passed out of print, much of the wealth of specific counsel of great value to us was no longer available. To provide this, together with later and fuller writings on certain phases of the topic, this work, Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, was published in 1913.
Brought to view in this volume are the principles and methods of presenting an education which “includes not only mental discipline, but that training which will secure sound morals and correct deportment”—that education which will “fit men and women for service by developing and bringing into active exercise all their faculties.”
As the subject is developed, there are clearly set forth the responsibilities and duties of parents, heartening counsel to guide the teachers in their work, and practical instruction to those who devote the years of their youth in preparing for a life of service.
At the close of each section, a page under the title “For Further Study” presents references to other E.G. White books containing related instruction. With the publication of the four volumes, Fundamentals of Christian Education (1923), Messages to Young People (1930), The Adventist Home (1952), and Child Guidance (1954), the sources of available related E.G. White materials is greatly expanded. In this printing the reference on the “For Further Study” pages have been broadened to include these helpful sources.
That this volume may serve yet more fully as a guide to parents and teachers in advancing “the most delicate work ever entrusted to mortals,” that of bringing “man back into harmony with God,” is the earnest desire of the Publishers and
The Trustees of the
Ellen G. White Publications