Essay on Philosophy Statement

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Philosophy Statement The concept of progressivism was introduced as early as 1875, but it was not until the 1920’s that this movement became more widely known. Credit for the success of progressivism is given to John Dewey, founder of the Laboratory School at the University of Chicago. Dewey began this educational movement of encouraging schools to abandon the essentialist curriculum of the traditional disciplines, and, instead navigate toward a curriculum centered on the experiences, interests, and abilities of the student. The foundation of progressivism lies within the concept of individuality; students are encouraged to be creative, articulate their own ideas, value individual differences, and develop…show more content…
While testing his educational ideas at the Laboratory School, Dewey developed a five step method for solving problems: (1) become aware of the problem, (2) define it, (3) propose various hypotheses to solve it, (4) examine the consequences of each hypotheses in the light of previous experience, and (5) test the most likely solution. The teacher’s responsibility is to guide or direct the students when engaged in this process. Progressivist educators feel that teachers should always focus their instructional methods on the why’s and why not’s, as opposed to striving to achieve basic rote learning. Teachers are not restricted to focusing on only one discipline at a time and expose students to social, scientific, and technological developments. “They must be creative in finding integrated learning activities that can be presented as meaningful to students.” A progressivist educator’s goal is to guide students that will become intelligent problem solvers who are capable of surpassing rote memorization in order to solve complex problems, including those similar to ones they will encounter in society. As adults and active social citizens, they will take an interest in their community and in their country while using prior knowledge and experiences to methodically solve new problems. Related to progressivism is the constructivist view of learning which also emphasizes the learner’s contribution to meaning and
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