Throughout history, many individuals have contributed to early childhood education. Through these contributions, teachers today have been able to establish their own philosophies of teaching. In order for a person to become successful in the classroom, one must truly connect with one's students and be able to establish student-teacher relationships. One must also develop a positive attitude towards teaching. One individual who has had a remarkable impact on early childhood education is Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi. His educational philosophy has been a stepping-stone in the philosophy of many teachers after his time. Pestalozzi was able to improve many of the school systems of his time and his ideas are still being used to this day. Biography
Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi was born in Zurich, Switzerland on January 12, 1746. He was the son of a surgeon and oculist of some standing in the community that he was living in. When Johann was five years old, his father passed away and his mother then raised him along with his other three brothers and sisters. Since his father had passed away, the family's economic stature was extremely meager. Though they were poor, Johann was raised with much love and affection. He was a very weak and delicate boy since the day he was born. Pestalozzi was also a very shy and awkward young boy. He showed difficulties in school for the fact that he had an emotional temperament, he was absent-minded and in attentive. Pestalozzi began in elementary school and moved on to grammar school. In 1754, he entered a seven-year preparatory school and he studied there until 1757. He then attended The Collegium Carolinum School (Downs, 1903, p.18-19). Pestalozzi studied theology at the University of Zurich in Switzerland but was forced to abandon his career because of his political activity on behalf of the Helvetic Society, a reformist Swiss political organization. From 1769 to 1798 he lived at his farm,...
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