Education and the Role of Philosophy

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Education and, the Role of Philosophy

In The Journey through American Education

“Curriculum as a field of study has been characterized as elusive, fragmentary and confusing” (Ornstein and Hunkins, 2009, p. 1). According to Wikipedia, education is any act or experience that has a formative effect on the mind, character, or physical ability of an individual and is the process by which society deliberately transmits its accumulated knowledge, skills and values from one generation to another. This report will journey through the history of education, its philosophies and the philosophers that helped shape and design it.

Originally American schools were defined by religion. The foundation of education was based on religious study. The schools meaning in 1620 was to build a republic of God-fearing citizens. Women taught children to read the bible and to write the scriptures while the men and older boys were out in the fields working. With the women as nurturers teaching themselves to read and write and then assuming that responsibility to nurture their children’s moral through the teachings of the scriptures led to the establishment of women as the backbone of American education which appears to still be the case of present times (History of American Education Primer, p. 27).

In the Massachusetts Bay Colony, Protestant ideological managers sought to create a moral and God-fearing society and their goals were: 1. Honor, fear, and obey God, 2. Honor, fear, and obey the father in the home and 3. Honor, fear, and obey the government. This philosophy of the Protestants was called Calvinism which is the belief that humans are born in sin and must purge this sin as children grow into adults (p. 10).

The Massachusetts Law of 1642 which called for all parents to find someone to teach their children how to read the bible, write out scriptures, follow Protestant theology, and obey the laws of the land along with The Old Deluder Satan Law of...
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