It will be seen that there is a great deal for a girl to learn about the spending of money. She will readily understand that it is impossible for her to use her wages or income to the best advantage unless she knows what she is spending it for, and in what proportions. Every girl should make a division of income fitted to her own needs.
It is not always possible to follow the percentages which Mrs. Richards recommends, but it is possible and wise for every girl to know what are regarded as proper divisions for a family income, and to plan her own expenditures with such percentages as a guide.
Sometimes girls are called "fortunate" or "lucky" because their affairs seem to turn out well. In reality, these girls have planned carefully and have carried out their plans faithfully. A well managed life is not an accident, or a piece of luck; it is the result of careful planning, and persistent application.
The girl who saves has a freedom of action unknown to the girl who has never had a bank account. We all find a compelling necessity to spend money for food, shelter, clothing, carfare and other incidentals. But when these wants are satisfied, the wise girl puts by a certain part of her income. Then she can begin to exercise a power of choice. She may take some training which will help her to get a better position, she may learn a new occupation, or she may study music or designing. Possibly she needs a rest and change; if she has money saved, she may rest for a few weeks. If she has spent all her money, she must continue at work. Then, too, she should guard herself by the possession of a bank account against sickness, and being out of work. Even a small sum saved every week enables a girl to feel strong and self-reliant. The habit of saving calls for self-control, far-sightedness and imagination.
Girls invest their savings in various ways. A girl may help her people to buy a house, sometimes with a garden attached. This is a good investment in most circumstances. The girl should take an interest in the garden and help to grow vegetables and flowers. Possibly the garden lot may be large enough for poultry as well as vegetables. Or the girl's family may live outside the city, in which case a good part of the food for the household may be produced in the garden. It was one of the glories of Belgium before the war that many of her wage-earners lived in the country and grew a good part of their own food. They kept hens and pigs; and there was almost no unemployment or destitution in Belgium.
The girl who saves generally begins with a bank account and should learn to understand banking. The Canadian Government has an advantageous system of annuities which offers young investors an excellent return for them money. Girls and boys alike should study these annuities. Life insurance is a helpful form of investment for those who have dependents. The girl at work should not put her savings into speculative investments. Business men of the best standing say it is pathetic to see the waste of girls' savings in unwise investments. One of the best investments a girl can make is to continue her education.
Health has more to do with our successful employment than most of us have yet realized. To prove that this is true a woman who is an employment expert told the following story:
"The other night I was sitting in my office waiting for a girl who could not come to see me in the daytime. The manager of a business house who was interested in the girl had asked me if I would advise her how to change her work from one employment which she liked fairly well to another in which she was greatly interested. I had formed no particular idea of what the girl would be like. My day had been full and I had had no time to consider her case, knowing only that she wanted to change her work, and that she was a girl who was already earning her living.
"She came in, looked at me with a straight, steady glance and offered me her hand with a simplicity which took no note of the fact that an older person is supposed usually to make the first advance. The fact that we shook hands gave me an opportunity to notice that her hand was neither nervous nor tremulous. The quality of her handclasp can be summed up in saying that it was reassuring and agreeable. I wonder if most people know how all these points are noticed by employment experts and employers. The way in which the girl looked at me and the way in which she shook hands told me that she was physically and mentally in good condition.
"She was about five feet ten, and unusually well built and well developed. She was dressed in noticeably good taste. She was a rather large woman, or rather girl, for she was only a child in years. She was not what anyone would call 'a beauty,' but she was so splendidly well and carried herself so finely that she made an excellent impression. I do not know when I have been so much attracted by anyone. Almost any employer would have given her a position if he had had one vacant which she could fill. I wish all girls could realize what an advantage it is to be well physically and mentally and to look as well as this girl did.
"When I came to question her I found that her story was unusual from the point of view of employment. I thought from her appearance that she might be eighteen or nineteen. But to my astonishment she told me that she was fifteen and that she had been earning her living for nearly a year. She was a stenographer and had had three years' training in a high school of commerce. Her father had died and she was helping to support her mother. Several factors were against her satisfactory employment. She was under age and she had not completed her school course when she went to work. From these two facts it would have been natural to suppose that she would obtain a poor position, both in the character of the work required and in payment. She was earning fifteen dollars a week, a rate of payment three or four dollars a week higher than the average wage paid beginners in the city where she was employed. It was her splendid health, her look of substantial character and her good manner which had won this girl employment when another girl of fifteen, less healthy and less developed, might have failed to find any satisfactory position at all."
A time is likely to come in the world's history when the laws of right living are so well understood that poor health will be regarded as blameworthy. In a number of cases we must regard it as blameworthy now. To be in the company of a radiantly healthy person is a cheerful blessing. Let us make up our minds to be this kind of blessing to our friends.
Happily we can do a great deal to make ourselves healthy. We need to eat wisely, to dress properly and to rest well. Every girl should learn to regulate these things wisely for herself. Other people can only help to make us healthy, but the real work of being healthy we must do for ourselves, and this means daily attention and daily care. A famous doctor said once that the average baby is meant to live; all the baby asks is to be given a good chance. In the same way the average human being is meant to be healthy. Health depends—the statement is so important that it will bear repeating—on care in eating and resting and on proper clothing. Health depends also on cleanliness, inside the body and out; this means cleanliness in every respect. A daily bath and proper attention to one's body are essential to health.
The girl should learn as soon as possible that her health as well as her appearance will depend on her taking daily exercise. She may suppose that exercise is a dull tiresome thing which she is told by other people to take, but which in itself has no interest for her. Here, as in other things, the girl must learn to be her own captain, her own commanding officer. She should give herself orders to take daily exercise. If any of us needs a lesson in keeping well and beautiful, we can get that lesson from our little friends the birds. Every creature, wild and tame, winged and four-footed, takes the most scrupulous care of its physical condition. They clean, stretch, brush, polish, until every feather or hair, until every muscle and sinew is in fit condition.
We should think of our bodies as fine instruments which are given into our keeping. The human body is the finest and most wonderful instrument in the world, and it is sad and amazing how often we fail to take the most ordinary care of it. There are different systems of exercise, and the girl should find one that will bring all her muscles properly into play. Five or ten minutes' exercise a day is all that is required. There are many muscles which are not used in walking or ordinary play, and if these muscles are not exercised regularly then that fine instrument your body will get out of good condition and will not show correct and beautiful lines. A girl should train herself to stand properly. A simple test by which she can tell if she is holding herself rightly is to walk a few steps on tiptoe. In order to do this she must hold herself correctly. To have a good body, well shaped and in right proportion, it is necessary to hold one's self correctly all the time. Habits such as these are not acquired all at once. It is only by persistence day by day that the girl will learn to walk and to stand properly and will find that her body is becoming lithe, strong and healthy, an instrument which it is a joy to use and which will make her appearance as attractive as it ought to be.
When anything goes wrong which we do not understand, it is generally necessary to consult a physician. Special care should be taken to see a good doctor or dentist, if anything is wrong with eyes or teeth.
Other aids to health and happiness are sunshine and fresh air, drinking plenty of good water, useful work, good temper, and good times. To be healthy and happy we must also give affection and kind help to other people.
Like everyone else, the girl at work needs holidays. Two weeks in the year is a usual allowance; but three weeks are better than two. After the girl has become a responsible and important worker, she will find two holidays in the year a good investment for health, a short holiday and a longer one of three or four weeks.
To be angry, bad tempered and to think unkindly are all harmful to one's health and destroy a great part of one's happiness. No one can be a successful worker of a high type who is habitually jealous or bad-tempered. Good thoughts are an aid to both health and happiness. In the same way one needs what are called "good times." Many girls love walks in the country with a number of companions. Learning to know birds and flowers by sight, and keeping a record of those found, and when and where they were found, is an enjoyable pursuit of endless interest. Learn to keep and cherish all the festivals of the year—Christmas, New Year's, Thanksgiving, and other holidays. Charades and plays, games and dancing, picnics and excursions, may be made enjoyable and delightful and should help to keep girls healthy as well as happy if they are planned with good sense and restricted to suitable times and places.
A GIRL'S READING
Anyone who has developed a love for reading possesses resources for self-improvement and enjoyment which are almost limitless. This love for reading a girl may acquire when she is young, or she may develop it at any time. It is worth while taking some trouble to learn to read well.
Reading for the girl at work should include newspapers and magazines as well as books. She should learn how to read newspapers, because as a great journalist said once, "A newspaper is a sign post telling the traveller which road he ought to take." In this sense we are all travellers and every worker needs to read his sign post which is a newspaper. To each girl some parts of a newspaper are more important than others; much depends on her occupation and on her relations to life. The business man reads the newspaper to find out what is happening that will affect his business. The girl at work should read what we call foreign news, that is, news about countries other than our own, and she should read also about important happenings in our own country. We ought to read the newspaper carefully so that we may be in touch with the rest of the world. We should read important local news, that is, news of our own neighbourhood. We cannot understand our neighbourhood unless we know what is going on in it. A new library may have been opened, a new church or picture gallery. Some worth while person may be speaking whom we may go to hear. There may be trouble in the community which we can help to put right. The person who is really living in touch with progress must give some time to daily newspapers.
But there is a good deal in a newspaper which one does not need to read. A newspaper is a report of daily happenings, sometimes even of rumours. These should be published, so that the truth may be arrived at, but the girl at work should find the parts of the newspaper which are her special concern and should not give much time to the rest of the paper. She should learn to distinguish facts from rumours and opinions. The girl who is learning discrimination in buying will find some of the advertisements useful reading.
Magazines are more like books than newspapers. Sometimes they are not so useful as newspapers. But they are often entertaining, and good entertainment is a fine thing. There are magazines which make a special feature of publishing articles on what is new in art, science, music, politics, etc. A number of good magazines are devoted especially to the interests ofwomen. The girl should not attempt to buy many magazines. A great many of them are alike. She should find one that meets her needs, and sometimes she should vary her choice.
It is important that she should see some of the best publications which have to do with her own line of work. If the girl is working at home she should read about home questions. Admirable new publications are being issued on all kinds of household matters. If a girl is a saleswoman or stenographer, she should see what is being written on these subjects. It is a mistake for any worker not to make herself familiar with what other workers in her own occupation are doing.
Besides reading for our work, we have minds and souls to keep and cultivate. Reading of the right kind is a great help in encouraging the growth of mind and soul. Books, when they are good of their kind, and when read in the right way, teach us; give us rest, change and variety; entertain and amuse us; and are a refuge and consolation.
We can learn a great deal from a good book of fiction. One writer has said that she obtained the greater part of her education from reading novels. Stories explain to us the endless varieties of human nature. We learn to know people from reading good novels, and after a while we are able to criticize the characters in the stories from the people we know ourselves. Then we can tell whether the novel is true to nature, or whether it is only a poor mistaken interpretation of life. Many novels have to do with famous places as well as famous people. It would be a great loss if we had to give up all the good novels in the world. The best novels help us to understand how wonderfully important life is.
Other realms of knowledge and delight are found in biography and history. Scarcely too much can be said in praise of good biography. The girl should ask at home or in a library for an interesting life of some famous person. Perhaps she is specially attracted to a hero or heroine of history, to some famous writer, artist or musician. In any case, she may ask the librarian to advise her which biography to read first. While reading famous histories, such as Greene's Short History of England, she should not fail to read the history connected with her own neighbourhood. World history and the history of countries other than our own are also important.
Besides fiction, biography and history, the girl is likely to find herself longing to read some of the great poetry of the world. Here again she may ask the advice of the librarian. We can hardly know the full beauty of God's world until we have read some of the writings of the great poets. The girl who is really fond of reading will enjoy essays and the letters of famous people. Girls who love art and music will find good books on such subjects. Almost anything one can imagine has been written about in a book.
While she should read well and wisely, the girl should not turn into a bookworm. Unless our reading fits us for better thought and better action, we should examine into what we are reading and change it for something better. Reading should never be a hindrance to work, but a help. Nor should we put reading in the place of people. It is a poor plan for any girl to prefer books habitually to intercourse with her friends.
A number of fine books deal with social and economic questions. These subjects appear also in many novels. The girl who wants to see conditions improved for the sick, the poor, and the unfortunate may again ask advice from the librarian. The biography of a woman like Miss Nightingale, or such a book as Ruskin's "Sesame and Lilies," will interest girls of this class.
A few rules will help us in our reading. Whatever book we read should be a good book of its class. Suppose we want to read a light and entertaining book for amusement and relaxation, then it should be good entertainment, well written, well planned, delightfully easy and gay in style. Do not read books which make you wish that you had not read them. Shun books which make one feel that life is not worth living. We can always judge the character of a book by the importance it gives to life. A book that has a great vision of life is a great book. In the same way we should not read books that make us think poorly of people. The finer the book the more clearly it shows how worth while every individual is. Any book that separates us, or turns us away, from the highest, happiest things is not worth the time which we might spend in reading it. There is something wrong with a book which leaves us indolent and listless. Books that we should choose, therefore, are those which make us feel that life is worth living, that people are worth while, and which keep us in love with the highest things in life.
There is a question which everyone should ask herself about her work: "Is the work that I am doing adding anything to the wealth and well-being of the world? Is it necessary work—that is, is any one single person dependent to any extent for his or her existence on what I do?"
Necessary work has to do with providing the necessaries of life. These are food, clothing, shelter, light, heat and every other service or commodity which helps to keep us alive and adds to our efficiency as human beings.
Anyone, therefore, who is producing food or preparing it is a necessary worker. So are the great armies of workers who are engaged in producing materials out of which all kinds of necessary clothing are made, and other workers who make necessary clothing from wool, cotton, linen, etc.
Such workers occupy an honourable place because our lives actually depend on them. Their daily work adds to the wealth of the world and makes it possible to improve the standard of living for everyone. We could spend much time naming the occupations of necessary workers, such as fishermen, sailors, railway men, farmers, miners, and many others. Sailors and railway men are not directly engaged in creating new wealth as the farmer is, but food would not do us much good if there were no one to bring it to market, so all transportation workers are necessary workers.
Mothers of children add infinitely to the wealth and well-being of the world. Every girl or woman whose work it is to prepare food and make a home is a necessary worker of honourable rank. The paid house worker is a necessary worker and has this honourable rank.
Whether or not we are engaged in necessary work makes a great difference to the steadiness of our employment. If we are doing necessary work, we are much more certain of steady employment than we can be if our work is connected with providing luxuries or other commodities which are not essential to the maintenance of life.
About twice in every ten years, the world, or part of the world, experiences what is known as a financial depression. Perhaps crops have failed in many countries, or unwise people have been speculating madly, or a great amount of money has been invested in utilities which will not become productive for a number of years. Whatever the reason is, the world passes through a time of business depression. Every worker, young and old, should remember that these times of depression will recur. In good times when we are earning good wages we must prepare for these bad times when wages may be lower, or we may be out of work altogether and have no wages for some months. If we are not primary producers, such as the people in the classes named above, then it is wise for us to learn how to do some necessary work so that when a business depression comes, if we lose our usual employment, we may turn to this other vocation which we have learned.
Some girls earn wages by curling feathers. Now feathers are a luxury. No one needs to wear a feather in her hat in order to keep alive. But we know that we must eat, be clothed and have shelter in order to live. In times of great business depression people stop spending money, as far as possible. They cease buying feathers and other luxuries. In this way, girls who earn their living by doing work connected with luxuries are likely to lose their employment during times of financial depression. But if the girl who has earned her living curling feathers is a good cook, she is reasonably sure of employment even in bad times. Workers such as artists of all kinds, musicians, writers, actors, painters, sculptors, handicraft workers, architects and so on are likely to experience difficulties during times of financial depression. Many workers in these classes agree that it is advisable for them to have other work of a different character which they may use as occasion requires.
The girl who is a musician may add to her profession a knowledge of poultry farming or rose growing. Roses may be called a luxury, it is true, but the world will never consent to live without roses. Or the girl who is an artist may make and sell blouses. The girl who is a writer may find productive work of the same character as the musician, or she may turn to fruit farming or become a paid housekeeper. Every worker should make an effort to understand the connection between the character of her work and the likelihood of her obtaining steady employment.
WHAT ONE GIRL CAN DO FOR ANOTHER
"No work will have as much happiness as it ought to have, or will be as well done as it should be, until fellow-workers exchange experiences and advice with one another."
Every girl can learn something about her work from others in the same occupation. To learn from a friendly fellow-worker is pleasant and easy compared with the difficulty that we find in learning from people who are not specially interested in showing us how to work. Some of the happiest groups of workers are those who have organized to promote friendship and good feeling amongst girls and women who are in the same occupation.
This is what the girls of one such group say of the benefit of belonging to a friendly social organization of which the members are fellow-workers: "It improves our work, because we know how the others do theirs and we want to do as well as they do. We talk over problems in our work, and hearing the various ideas and solutions that others have thought out helps us in solving our problems. We do not meet to discuss our work primarily; as a rule our gatherings are for enjoyment and recreation. But work every now and then comes into general conversation and in this way we learn. It is a help to have for a friend one of the best workers in your occupation. You try your best to keep up with her. If any of the girls needs a new position, or is in difficulty about her work, she may talk it over with one of the older workers. In the same way we advise one another about wages. We can find out what is the average wage and the best wage paid in the occupation and what are the average hours of employment. Many girls in the club have found new positions and have been able to ask for and get higher wages through the advice and help of other club members."
Every girl knows what a help it is to work with others when sewing, mending, dressmaking and trimming hats. The girl in paid employment finds this work more trying than the girl who remains at home, because the girl at home generally has spare hours during the day when she may do work of this character. A mending circle meeting once a week could plan some entertainment to accompany work. One of the circle might read aloud, or all the members might take turns in telling a story and adding in some way to the evening's entertainment. Girls in such a circle could all help in blouse making or in millinery. One or more of the members might have a special gift in cutting and fitting. Others might be more skilful in sewing. One or more of the girls might have a special gift in buying. The possibilities of co-operative work of this kind for girls in the twentieth century are very great indeed.
There was a time in the history of the world when work of this kind was all done in private homes. Women and girls worked together at home, spinning, weaving, sewing and dressmaking. A great part of such work is now done in factories. But girls know that they still have mending, sewing, dressmaking and millinery to do. People are seldom well advised if they do work of this kind in isolation. The work is often not so well done and the worker is lonely and apt to be discouraged. It is part of the duty of the twentieth century girl to restore happiness and companionship in all this women's work, a great part of which is still done by hand. The happy circle of girl workers is often the best solution to the problem of how this work of making, trimming and mending should be done.
One such group of girls, in this case, a group of stenographers, who, as it happens, have all come from farm homes, have made a success of co-operative housekeeping. There are eight girls in the group. The city in which they work is by a lake and during the summer months these girls rent a cottage on the lake shore outside the city. They have the cottage for four months. Two girls undertake the housekeeping for a month at a time, which means that each girl has one month of housekeeping responsibility and three months when she helps only with tidying and cleaning. Their individual expenses for rent and housekeeping amount to $4.50 per week. This is an excellent example of the good to be obtained from co-operative effort.
Other girls find companionship, recreation and improvement in reading circles, study clubs, and clubs for walking, snowshoeing, skating and other outdoor enjoyment. Clubs formed to promote play and exercise are among the best of these organizations. Some circles are for dancing; others are dramatic clubs. Practically every group of this kind undertakes some benevolent work, and should do so in order to share happiness and good times with others. Such clubs entertain the inmates of hospitals, children's and old people's homes, give Christmas trees to children, send gifts to the needy, or work for benevolent organizations.
The club for outdoor play is one of the most important of group organizations. It has a wonderful effect on the health of its members. Tennis, basket ball, cricket, hockey and croquet are played by groups of girls who often challenge boys' clubs and are able to enter such contests with skill and ability. The gardening club is one of the many ways in which a club of girls can raise money to help in benevolent and other objects.
To form a group of this kind successfully the girl members require to have kindly impulses and enthusiasm, a willingness to work and play together, and the wish to be useful and to do something worth doing. Other requisites are a few simple rules, loyally lived up to, and one or two girls who have organizing ability. Leaders should train others to lead also, and each girl should take her turn in leading and in following.
The ideal group is not made up of girls exclusively, but should take its pattern as much as possible from family life. The girls of the group play together and work together. But the fathers and mothers of some of the girls will be glad to be honorary members and should share at times both in work and in play. A boys' club may be a friendly rival in games and may co-operate in benevolent work and entertainment.
CIVIC DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Learning to be a good neighbour is an active enjoyment which lasts us all our lives. Our civic duties and responsibilities may be summed up by saying that they are the duties and opportunities of a good neighbour. We should study our civic duties and responsibilities carefully so that we may know how to vote rightly and wisely when we are given an opportunity to vote on public questions.
The privilege of voting as a citizen is of the highest importance. But it is not by any means the only duty or opportunity of a good neighbour. Women have exercised the right to vote only of recent years, and still in a number of countries women do not yet vote. They can and do give service in many other ways. Every man and woman who has the franchise should record an honest and intelligent vote. But those who vote should give other service as well. Those who are too young to vote have other opportunities to work for the community and for the nation.
The right to vote in Canadian elections for the Dominion House of Commons was given to a limited number of women for the first time in 1917. By an Act of Parliament which became law in 1918 all women in Canada have the right to vote in Dominion elections under the same conditions as men. Women of twenty-one and over have the right to vote in the Provincial elections of Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Nova Scotia.
What is the meaning of learning to be a good neighbour?
Let us take the cases of three Canadian girls. One lives in a country neighbourhood, one belongs to a village, and the third is a city girl. Each of them lives in a house on a road or street. Other houses in which neighbours live are not far away. The city girl's next door neighbour is close by; there is more space in the village; and where the country girl lives everyone owns a farm so that there is abundance of room between one neighbour and another.
The community in which she lives gives each of these girls certain good things. It gives her the school where she is educated. The roads that lead to different places where she needs to go are provided by the community.
When a great many people live close together, the community has to provide other necessary things. The girl in the country neighbourhood, unlike the city girl, needs no special playground because she has many beautiful, safe places where she can play; also her father can provide his house with pure water with comparative ease, whereas in a city or town, the council, which is the government of the local community, provides water and playgrounds. The city girl is used to having these things provided for her by the community, and the girl in the country often does not stop to think of the space, light, air and water which are hers so freely and abundantly.
What we call the community is all the people who live in one district, which has boundaries to mark it off from other communities. Certain utilities, such as roads, schools, courts, water, lighting, parks, playgrounds, and many other things, are kept up by taxes, which are paid by the people of the community.
Sometimes taxes are objected to as burdens. But it is honourable to pay taxes for the upkeep of a good community. Money raised by taxes should be spent wisely, honestly, and not extravagantly. It is the people's money, and proper value should be received for what the community spends. We should all see as far as possible that the money from taxes is spent properly.
Every girl, boy, man and woman, is a citizen of some community and nation, and has a duty to see that the community and nation are well managed and well governed.
There is a beautiful word, common, which is sometimes misused in one of its meanings. One of the meanings of the word "common" is "belonging to all." Common property means property belonging to a certain number of people. A "common" is a piece of public property. A common duty is a duty which belongs to all. There is no common or public property in your neighbourhood, and there is no common duty in your neighbourhood, which is not yours.
To be a good neighbour has both a public and a private meaning. You are a good neighbour to the people who live near you if you help to take care of them when they are sick, do everything you can to keep them healthy when they are well, and are kind when they are in trouble. A good neighbour is a quiet, peaceful, law-abiding citizen, pleasant and useful in the neighbourhood. What you do as a good neighbour for the people who live next door, you do as far as you are able for the community in which you live. The best rule ever given to the world for being a good neighbour is contained in the story of the Good Samaritan. The more we study that story, the better we will understand our duties to our neighbours and the community.
Women and girls should be specially interested in such questions as education and the training of children, in public health and safety and public justice, in markets and everything having to do with the food supply, and in the proper treatment of immigrants. The nation cannot do its best unless girls and women help by being good neighbours and citizens in all these and other matters.
Perhaps the most valuable possession that any girl has is her character. The honest, kind, likeable girl, who keeps her word and is a good friend, is valued by everyone who knows her. The character of a nation is not unlike the character of the individual. We love our country. We would give her the best service. The best we can do for her is to make her national character honest, kind, strong, helpful and lovable. Every individual in a nation has a civic duty and responsibility to make that nation a good neighbour.
A Canadian woman of seventy years said once to a younger woman who was a professional worker, "My dear, tell me about the hospital where you are working. I have heard that conditions are not all they should be. I want to know, because if I know I may be able to help in making what is wrong right." She was a quiet, gentle woman, charming in manner, and somewhat shy and reserved. She never talked about disagreeable things. On this occasion she believed it was her duty to make sure whether there was a wrong, and if there was to try to put it right. No one ever heard anything said about this matter in public, but after some time the management of one public institution was greatly improved. Age, experience and wisdom can help in these wonderful ways. Girls may learn from such women.
We learn best to be good citizens in our own homes. Study public affairs and community questions with your father and mother, brothers and sisters.
Those who read Queen Victoria's Letters, which have been published, notice that in her girlhood she was a simple, gentle, innocent girl, not specially clever, but eager to learn, resolved that everything in the government of her country should be explained to her so that she might understand it. It was her duty to know the details of that great government, and she was determined, no matter what it cost her in work and study, to know and understand her duty. In her later letters she appears as an old, very wise woman, one of the first statesmen of her age. Queen Victoria had great responsibilities. Ours are smaller. But no girl, whether she works at home or in paid employment, can reach her highest development in the twentieth century without living up to her civic and national responsibilities.
THE BEST KIND OF WORK
Summing up what we have been able to learn, and what the world has learned, about employment, it is generally agreed that hard work is best. By hard work is meant work which requires from us the putting forth of all our energies and which calls for all our gifts. Work is very beneficial. As a man has said, "It takes the nonsense out of people," not the fun out of life, but the nonsense out of people, foolish, wrong, mistaken ideas which make people disagreeable to work with or play with or live with. It is not until our work, and methods of doing work, make use of all our ability and capacity that we know how fine work can be. You remember the story in the Bible which tells how Jacob wrestled with an unseen adversary until the breaking of the day. Then when Jacob was asked what he would have, he answered, "I will not let thee go except thou bless me." So work when we do our best with it blesses us.
Musicians speak of "technic" in playing and artists of "technic" in painting. Technic is skill, but it is more than skill. It is skill and individuality joined together. There is technic of a certain kind which we all may acquire in our work. Perhaps a story will explain best what this technic is. A beautiful girl who had all the gifts of a great actress but was untrained once made an extraordinary success in one of Shakespeare's plays. Later she failed utterly. She had not had that patient unceasing practice which makes every performance a high level of acting. When she felt inspired, she could act; but when she was dull or tired or out of sorts, her inspiration failed her, and she had no technic or skill in acting to fall back upon.
The good cook practically never fails in what she makes. She may not feel like cooking her best every day, but she knows how, and all her good work in the past stands by her skilful hands and makes her cooking a success every day. In the same way, the practised writer can rely on a certain technic or skill in writing even when he is dull and jaded and yet there is work which must be done.
In your work, no matter what it is, do your best every day as far as you are able, and by and by this skill in work will stand beside you like a friend and will help your hands and mind.
Have you ever noticed how a mother who has brought up five or six children of her own, takes a baby up in her hands? Such skill in handling an infant is one of the most beautiful things in the world. The mother can do it well, because she has done it often, with all her heart.
We often hear of success and failure in work. Good work is made up of both failure and success. One failure may spur us on to do better work than we have ever done before. A failure may teach us a great deal if we will learn from it. Do not be cast down because of failure. Find out what its lesson is. Do not be too much uplifted over a success. It may turn out a hindrance if we grow conceited over it. Both success and failure are temporary phases of good work.
We should learn not to try too hard, or be over anxious about work. Once an old gentleman who had taken up golf late in life said that his caddy had taught him a great lesson. "You are too anxious." the little boy said. "Just do as well as you can and don't be so anxious. You would play a better game that way."
We do not always believe when we are learning that work will be enjoyable. We have to learn how to work before we can get the full enjoyment from our occupation. You had to learn how to skate and how to dance before you enjoyed skating and dancing. Trying to skate and trying to dance and being awkward, and not knowing how, does not give one the full enjoyment of skating and dancing. But when we do know how and have become skilful, how delightful these recreations are! When we know how to work, work also is full of enjoyment.
It is well to remember that work is a permanent part of our lives. Do not think of it, therefore, as a harsh or unfriendly part of life, but realize the meaning of employment as one of our greatest possessions. It is a means by which we can enter into the full enjoyment of our own faculties and which helps us to understand the importance of life. The comradeship of work is very real and lasting. The girl who goes forward, therefore, into her life's work with a determination to do her best, while she will often meet hard problems, is certain to find usefulness and happiness in her employment.
LIST OF OCCUPATIONS
Accompanying, see music.
Business managing and owning.
Buying, see store employment.
Care of children.
Children's clothes making.
Composition, see music.
Concert singing and playing.
Designing fabrics, wall papers, etc.
Domestic science: Cook, special cooking, dietitian, manager of clubs, hotels, restaurants, tea rooms and cafeterias, lecturer, teacher, writer.
Domestic service, see house employment.
Dressmaking: Designing, sewing, buying, machine operating, managing and owning.
Expert in flour testing.
Factory employment: Machine operators, designers, forewomen, stenographers, bookkeepers, nurses, dietitians, welfare workers, travellers, managers and owners.
Farm work for women: Farm managing, bee-keeping, plant growing, flower growing, poultry and eggs, butter, milk and cheese, vegetables, fruit growing.
Handicrafts: Basketry, book binding, china decorating, embroidery, enameling, jewelry making, leather work, metal work, pottery, stencilling, weaving, wood carving.
Hostess, in hotels, clubs, etc.
House employment: Cook, laundress, housemaid, children's nurse, seamstress, ladies' maid, companion, mother's help, housekeeper, household manager and organizer.
Instructor in wireless telegraphy.
Investigating, see social work.
Millinery: Making, designing, selling, managing, owning.
Music: Accompanying, composition, concert playing and singing, teaching.
Nursing: Institutional, private, military, public health, schools, superintendents of hospitals and training schools, managing and owning private hospitals.
Office employment: Stenographer, typist, bookkeeper, confidential clerk, secretary, billing clerk, cheque clerk, fyling clerk, dictaphone operator, comptometer operator, librarian, manager.
Real estate: Agents, rent collectors.
Sewing by the day, see seamstress.
Social work: Secretaries, statisticians, visitors, lecturers, dietitians, doctors, nurses, field workers, investigators, parole officers, officers of institutions, superintendents.
Store employment: Messenger girls, parcel girls, markers, assistants, stenographers, shoppers, house furnishers, assistant managers, managers, assistant buyers, buyers, advertisers, nurses, dietitians, welfare workers, employment experts, owners.
Teaching: Public schools, high schools, colleges, private schools, music, dramatic, domestic science, kindergarten, arts and handicrafts, lecturing, teaching handicapped children, manual training, sewing, millinery, dressmaking, physical training, gardening, commercial subjects, governess, tutor, secretary, supervising.
Telegraphy: Morse operating, automatic machines.
Telephone employment: Operating, supervising, private switchboard operating.
Work for the girl at home: Blouse making, children's clothes, candy making, sewing, dressmaking, millinery, bread making, cake and jam making, pickles, marmalade, catering, shopping, embroidery, laundry work, mending, making underclothes, canning, raising fruit and flowers, poultry and eggs, vegetable growing, managing a lending library, teaching, mother's help, house work for neighbours, doctors' and dentists' secretary, visiting bookkeeper, visiting housekeeper.
Art of Right Living, The, by Ellen H. Richards: Whitcomb & Barrows, Boston (1904).
Business of Being a Woman, The, by Ida M. Tarbell: Macmillan, New York, 1916.
Careers: Women's Employment Publishing Company, London, 1916.
Classified List of Vocations for Trained Women, by E. P. Hirth: The Intercollegiate Bureau of Occupations, New York, 1917.
Commercial Work and Training for Girls, by Jeannette Eaton and Bertha M. Stevens: Macmillan, New York, 1915.
Cost of Cleanness, The, by Ellen H. Richards: Wiley & Sons, New York (1908).
Cost of Food, The, by Ellen H. Richards: Wiley & Sons, New York (1901).
Cost of Living, The, by Ellen H. Richards: Wiley & Sons, New York (1899, 1905).
Cost of Shelter, The, by Ellen H. Richards: Wiley & Sons, New York (1905).
Democracy and Education, by John Dewey: Macmillan, New York (1916).
Domestic Needs of Farm Women. Report No. 104: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, 1915.
Domestic Service, by C. V. Butler: G. Bell & Sons, London, 1916.
Economic Needs of Farm Women. Report No. 106: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, 1915.
Economic Position of Women. Vol. I, No. 1. Proceedings of Academy of Political Science: Columbia University, New York, 1910.
Educational Needs of Farm Women. Report No. 105: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, 1915.
Fatigue and Efficiency, by Josephine Goldmark: Charities Publication Committee, New York, 1912.
Food and Household Management, by Helen Kinne and Anna M. Cooley: Macmillan, New York, 1915.
Home and the Family, The, by Helen Kinne and Anna M. Cooley: Macmillan, New York, 1917.
Household Administration, edited by Alice Ravenhill and Catherine J. Schiff: Grant Richards, London, 1910.
Increasing Home Efficiency, by Martha Bensley Bruere and Robert W. Bruere: Macmillan, New York, 1913.
Industrial Democracy, by Sidney and Beatrice Webb: Longmans, Green, London, 1897.
Intercollegiate Bureau of Occupations, New York. Reports. 1911-1913, 1914-1915.
Life and Labour of the People of London, Vol. 4. Women's Work, by Charles Booth: Macmillan, London, 1902.
Life of Ellen H. Richards, by Caroline L. Hunt: Whitcomb & Barrows, Boston, 1916.
Living Wage of Women Workers, The, by L. M. Bosworth: Longmans, Green, New York, 1911.
Long Day, The: The Century Company, New York, 1905.
Making Both Ends Meet, by S. A. Clark and Edith Wyatt: Macmillan, New York, 1911.
Minimum Cost of Living, The, by Winifrid Stuart Gibbs: Macmillan, New York, 1917.
Minority Report of the Poor Law Commission, Part 2. The Unemployed.
New Era in Canada, The, edited by J. O. Miller: J. M. Dent & Son, London and Toronto, 1917.
Profitable Vocations for Girls, by E. W. Weaver: A. S. Barnes Company, New York, 1913.
Report of The Ontario Commission on Unemployment, 1916.
Road to Trained Service in the Household, The, by Henrietta Roelofs: National Board Young Women's Christian Associations, New York, 1915.
Saleswomen in Mercantile Stores, by E. B. Butler: Charities Publication Committee, New York, 1909.
Shelter and Clothing, by Helen Kinne and Anna M. Cooley: Macmillan, New York, 1915.
Social and Labour Needs of Farm Women, Report No. 103, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, 1915.
Survey of Occupations Open to the Girl of Fourteen to Sixteen, by H.H. Dodge: Girls' Trade Education League, Boston, 1912.
Trade Union Woman, The, by Alice Henry: D. Appleton, New York, 1915.
Vocational Mathematics for Girls, by Wm. H. Dooley: D.C. Heath, Boston, 1917.
Vocations for Boston Girls. Bulletins. Telephone operating. Bookbinding. Stenography and typewriting. Nursery maid. Dressmaking. Millinery. Straw hat making. Manicuring and hairdressing. Nursing. Salesmanship. Clothing machine operating. Paper box making. Confectionery manufacture. Knit Goods manufacture: Girls' Trade Education League, Boston, 1911, 1912.
Vocations for Girls, by Mary A. Laselle and Katherine E. Wiley: Houghton, Mifflin Company, Boston, 1913.
Vocations for the Trained Woman, Vol. 1, Pts. 1 and 2. Women's Educational and Industrial Union, Boston: Longmans, Green, New York, 1910, 1914.
Wage-Earning Women, by Annie Marion Maclean: Macmillan, New York, 1910.
Ways of Woman, The, by Ida M. Tarbell: Macmillan, New York, 1915.
Welfare Work, by Dorothea Proud: G. Bell & Sons, London, 1916.
Woman and Labour, by Olive Schreiner: T. Fisher Unwin, London, 1911.
Woman—Bless Her, The, by Marjory MacMurchy: S. B. Gundy, Toronto, 1916.
Women and the Trades, by E. B. Butler: Charities Publication Committee, New York, 1909.
Women and Work, by Helen M. Bennett: D. Appleton & Company, New York, 1917.
Women in Modern Industry, by B. L. Hutchins: G. Bell & Sons, London, 1915.
Women's Educational and Industrial Union, Boston. Reports, 1913, 1914.
Work-a-day Girl, The, by Clara E. Laughlin: Fleming H. Revell Company, New York, 1913.
Youth, School and Vocation, by Meyer Bloomfield: Houghton, Mifflin Company, Boston, 1915.
Bank account 114
Best kind of work 138
Blouse making 78
Boarding house management 104
Bookkeeping 19, 80
Book reviewing 89
Business college 15
Buying a house and garden 114
Canadian Government Annuities 115
Candy making 78
Capital 65, 69
Care of children 84
Catering business 101, 104
Changing about 8
Chemical industry 96
Children's librarian 74
Children's nurse 44
Circulation librarian 74
City girl as neighbour 134
City, town and country wages and expenses 108
Civic duties and responsibilities 133
Civil service 19, 97
Commercial traveller 105
Comptometer operating 19
Concert singing and playing 92
Conductor of foreign tours 105
Consulting a dentist 119
Consulting a physician 119
Co-operation as applied to work of home 85
Co-operative housekeeping by girls 131
Co-operative principles 86
Country girl as a neighbour 134
Country walks 120
Custom dressmaking 48
Departments of Domestic Science 32
Designing costumes 45
Dictaphone operator 19
Difference between home and work 20
Difference between school and home 20
Division of family income 113
Domestic Science 28
Dressmaking, qualifications for employment, 46 training, 46 wages 48
Dressmaking as a business 48
Dressmaking as a factory trade 48
Employment department 9, 105
Employment expert 105
Entertaining 105, 119
Estimate of yearly income 109
Factory employment, qualifications for, 6 training, 4 wages 6
Fair wage 109
Farm work for women 65
Farm managers 65
"Field" work 98
Financial adviser 105
Flower growing 66
Food demonstrator 102
Fresh air 119
Fruit growing 79
Getting on with fellow workers 21
Girl who really wants work 23
Girl's accounts, The 113
Girl's reading, The 121
Girls' Clubs 131
Girls with intellectual gifts 94
Going into business for one's self 99
Good Samaritan, The 135
Good thoughts 120
Good times 26, 119
Government employment bureau 2
Hairdressing and manicuring, qualifications for employment, 61 training, 61 wages 62
Hairdressing and manicuring as a business 62
Hard work 138
Headings for girl's account book 113
Headings for private account book of business woman 112
Health as an aid to good employment 116
Health and beauty 117
Health exercise expert 104
Helpers in finding work 2
High character of teaching as a profession 36, 38
Home employments 82
Home gardens 85
Home girl's advantages 77
Home girl's allowance 77
Home maker 84
Home maker a necessary worker 127
Hotel manager, hostess, chaperone 104
House decorating 91
House employment, qualifications for, 30 training, 29 wages 29
House furnishing 91
House worker 28
Household accounting 83
Household expert 102
How to choose place of employment 5
Humanizing work (preface) iv
Improving one's work 106
Incomes of professional women 97
Increasing one's wages 111
Institutional nursing 44
Interests outside work 13
Investing in an education 115
Jewelry, handwrought 90
Keeping other people well 82
Knowing how to keep well 24, 82
Knowledge of nursing required by average girl 26, 83
Landscape gardening 91
Laundry work 104
Law and social work 95
Learning after the position is found 20
Learning from others 22
Learning how to be a good neighbour 133
Learning how to work 140
Library work, qualifications for employment, 71 training, 72 salaries 74
Life insurance 115
Limited hours for house worker 30
Living expenses 107
Living wage 107
Making one's own clothes 53
Management of clubs, hotels, tea-rooms, etc. 32
Managing a tea-room business 100
Managing money 25, 83
Maxwell, Sara 38
Millinery, qualifications for employment, 50 training, 50 wages 51
Millinery a seasonal trade 52
Millinery business 51
Money and wages 107
Music teaching 92
National character 136
Nature of a home based on right human relations 84
Necessaries of life 126
Necessary work 126
New employments in food, clothing, and home-making 102
New work 102
Nursing, qualifications for employment, 42 training, 39 salaries 43
Nurses' registries 43
Nurses' training schools 41
Office building management 105
Office employment, qualifications for, 16 training, 15 wages 17
Organization for comradeship 129
Other occupations for milliners 52
Outdoor clubs 131
Pageant mistress 105
Piece work 7
Plan for spending 112
Poultry farming 69
Preserving and canning 79
Private hospital 99
Private nursing 43
Privilege of voting 133
Producer of plays 105
Proof reading 90
Proper division of family income 113
Provincial and national franchise for women in Canada 133
Public health nurses 44
Public marketing expert 104
Public stenographer 18
Publicity writer 105
Qualifications for the successful home maker 83
Qualifications that help to ensure steady employment 23
Qualities of the successful business woman 99
Questions the girl should ask herself 2
Reading circles 131
Reading on one's work 122
Real estate agents 105
Real wages 107
Recreation 26, 131
Red Cross nurses 42
Reference librarian 73
Remunerative work for the girl at home 76
Rent collecting 105
Research work 96
Rest 26, 118
Richards, Mrs. 113
Righting a wrong 136
Routine work 71
Rules for reading 124
Safeguarding employment 127
St. John Ambulance 42
School nurses 44
School of salesmanship 10
Second employment 128
Self-support 20, 109
Sewing by the day 48
Shopping expert 104
Skilled work 4
Social and economic questions 124
Social engagements have no claim on working hours 23
Social work 105
Special care of children 104
Special cooking 32
Standards of living in different employments 108
Store employment, qualifications for, 9 training, 10 wages 11
Success and failure in work 139
Superintendents of training schools and hospitals 44
Taking stock of one's position 106
Teachers of special subjects 37
Teaching, characteristics of girl who should become a teacher, 35 training, 34 salaries 36
Telegraphy, qualifications for employment, 59 training, 59 wages 60
Telephone employment, qualifications for, 56 training, 56 wages 57
Telephone girl 56
Telephone school 56
To read well 121
Town girl as a neighbour 134
Trained nurse 39
Training for home making 83
Understanding each other's work 129
Vocational adviser 105
Voting by women 133
Wages, explanation of figures quoted 3
Wages for skilled workers 107
Waitress, qualifications for employment, 64 training, 63 wages 64
Welfare work 98
What every girl needs to know 24
What is harmful to health and happiness 120
What one girl can do for another 129
What the home maker needs to know 84
What wages should give 107
Woman's page 89
Wood carving 90
Work necessary to health and happiness 3
Young Women's Christian Associations 2, 11, 42, 70