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The Industrial Revolution - the Four Philosophies of Education

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Erica Kimara Harvey

Dr. Mildred E. Berry

Teaching Science in Elementary School

January 31, 2011

The Four Philosophies of Education

The four philosophies of education are perennialism, progressivism, social reconstructionist, and, essentialism. These fundamentals ,or set of related beliefs, governs the way an educator ,or school teaches, manages and, assess. As a pre-service teacher, I recognize the importance of knowing the historical philosophies of education ,and being aware that varying school systems and educators may employ varying philosophical principles; so I , as a future teacher must remain adaptable to meet the needs of students and school officials. In the next few paragraphs, I will briefly discuss the four philosophies of education.

First, perennialism of education, is a way of thinking and instructing that brings focus to universal truths. Followers of perennialism believe that "education is not an imitation of life but a preparation for it. In addition, the philosophy of perennialism also urges that students be taught certain "basic subjects" that will acquaint the student with permanencies of the world. Lastly , a major theme of perennialism is the belief that "regardless of differencing environments, human nature remains the same so education should be the same for all"(Introduction to philosophy of Education,George F. Kneller) .

Secondly, is the philosophy of progressivism; this doctrine believes that "education should be life itself, not a preparation for living" . Followers of this belief believe students should learn through problem solving and that learning should be related to students' interest. Furthermore, progressivism in education calls for teachers to be advisers in childrens' education not directors. Progressivism views also focus on the transition of students into independent thinkers as adults. The progressivism philosophy of education, believes that it is the duty of schools to prepare American citizens for active civic participation in the democratic system.



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