s/o WTM educational philosopies, educational movements, educational methods, curriculum, and textbooks.
For the first time during my homeschooling adventure I have felt the need to explain a few terms. Just as I have seen people throw a hissy fit over the difference between a scientific theory and a theory in everyday life; this is my hissy fit over philosophy, movement, method, curriculum, and textbook.
Educational philosophies are ways in which people think about education. It is truly when a person talks about what an education SHOULD be or should be comprised of. There are many ways of thinking about education and determining your educational philosophy. Typically the educational philosophies can be broken down to:
essentialism, perennialism, progressivism, social reconstructionism, critical theory, and existentialism
There are philosophers who have already thought about their own educational philosophy and have done us the courtesy of writing them down for us. This is a good list of educational philosophers:
- 3.1 Socrates (c. 469 BC – 399 BC)
- 3.2 Plato (424/423 BC - 348/347 BC)
- 3.3 Aristotle (384 BC - 322 BC)
- 3.4 Avicenna (980 - 1037)
- 3.5 Ibn Tufail (c. 1105 - 1185)
- 3.6 John Locke (1632-1704)
- 3.7 Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778)
- 3.8 Étienne Bonnot de Condillac (1715 – 1780)
- 3.9 Johann Friedrich Herbart (1776 – 1841)
- 3.10 Charlotte Mason (1842-1923)
- 3.11 John Dewey (1859-1952)
- 3.12 Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925)
- 3.13 Maria Montessori(1870-1952)
- 3.14 William Heard Kilpatrick (1871-1965)
- 3.15 A. S. Neill (1883-1973)
- 3.16 Martin Heidegger (1889-1976)
- 3.17 Jean Piaget (1896-1980)
- 3.18 Jerome Bruner (1915- )
- 3.19 Paulo Freire (1921-1997)
- 3.20 Nel Noddings (1929– )
- 3.21 John Holt (1923-1985)
Some of these philosophers and some people not on this list have begun movements (in either the public school system, the homeschool group, or more than likely in the history of education around the world). They typically discuss their philosophy of education and sometimes even use the 4 methods of education to explain their movement.
The main few movements of education are (in order of their respective ages):
There are 4 methods of education. Yep. Just 4. They are: 1) Explaining (by guiding, by lecture, or by writing a book). 2) Demonstrating (whether it is in person or on video) 3) Collaborating (allowing the students to come up with a solution on their own and only demonstrating and explaining when necessary) and finally 4) Learning by Teaching (where a student explains and demonstrates the knowledge they have acquired in order to teach others.)
Philosophers of education and even movements of education typically do not list the Methods they use to teach!
Finally when you are speaking to a public school teacher and you say that you purchase a curriculum, it is a bad thing. Here is why:
A textbook is a group of materials including a student textbook, a teacher's manual, a workbook or 2, and a few visual aides.
A curriculum (to a public school teacher) is a giant binder that they have filled with the items they have used in and outside of the textbooks, the items they have used from the provided supplements, a list of objectives, a list of methods they have used to achieve those objectives, a list of ways they have evaluated the implementation of those objectives, and any testing material or self-created supplements they have prepared in order to meet or evaluate their objectives.
Typically, I have never seen a homeschooling curriculum that meets the kind of minutae that a public school teacher is thinking when they hear "curriculum."
Sorry. Rant over.