ELEVATION 227 ihe senses in his life which makes him observe in this way the things around him like the sounds of the human voice. There is no need to illustrate objects for him; the only need is to refrain from stifling the instinct of observation which nature has given him. If we want to help him we must place ourselves on a higher level. We must give him more than he could obtain by his unaided efforts. May I be permitted to make a strong assertion that we ought to give him the philosophy of things? Let us begin with abstraction. Abstract ideas are synthetic conceptions of the mind which, detached from actual objects, abstract from them some qualities held in common which do not exist of themselves but exist in the actual things. For example, weight is an abstraction; it does not exist by itself; only heavy objects exist. In the same way one considers form and colour. These words stand for abstractions which are synthetic in themselves because they mass together in one single idea in an abstract manner, a quality scattered in various ways over an infinite number of real things. The children who love to stroke things materially rather than just to look at them appear to have minds which are less •bpen to abstract ideas. But here comes in a fine distinction. Is it the absence of the object which makes the abstractions inaccessible to the child, or is it real mental incapacity for grasp- ing that synthesis of many things which is an abstract idea of quality? If we succeed in materializing the idea, presenting it in a form adapted to the child, that of tangible objects, will his mind be capable of grasping it, of interesting himself deeply in it? The sense material may certainly be considered from this point of view as materialized abstraction. It presents colour, dimension, form, odour, sound, in a tangible and distinct manner -and arranged in grades which permit of the classification and analysis >of qualities. '