Schooling the Poor: A Social Inquiry into the American Educational Experience

By Stanley William Rothstein | Go to book overview

5
The Birth of Modern Schools

The ideas and pedagogic practices of John Dewey and his activity school are well-known to students of education. Their purpose, perhaps, was to recall a golden age when scholars and teachers worked together to establish a child-centered, activity-based, scientifically validated schooling experience for students.

Behind these cooperative efforts, there was a determined attempt to answer important questions about the learning process and the role that manual work, personal experiences, and activities played in the educational development of children. If the spirit of inquiry was to be encouraged in this elite, private university school, it was necessary to link the child's experiences to the forces that were operating in his or her everyday life outside school.


THE ACTIVITY SCHOOL: JOHN DEWEY AND EDWARD THORNDIKE

This experimental educational institution was an integral part of the University of Chicago from 1896 to 1904, opening its first session with 16 students and two instructors. It was not visions of the mass public school that it suggested but, rather, an informal learning center. It was a place where carpentry, cooking, sewing, and weaving were used to introduce students to the science and geography underlying these forms

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Schooling the Poor: A Social Inquiry into the American Educational Experience
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Critical Studies in Education and Culture Series ii
  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Series Foreword ix
  • Preface xiii
  • 1 - Pauper Schools 1
  • Notes 24
  • 2 - Houses of Confinement 27
  • Notes 42
  • 3 - Schooling the Poor 45
  • 4 - Organizational Perspectives 61
  • Notes 76
  • 5 - The Birth of Modern Schools 79
  • Notes 95
  • 6 - New Divisions: The Emergence of the High School 97
  • Notes 115
  • 7 - Agents of the State: Ambivalence in the Teacher's Position 117
  • Notes 139
  • 8 - The Other Side of Segregation: Ethnographic Glimpses of an Inner City Junior High School 143
  • Notes 166
  • 9 - Language and Pedagogy 169
  • Notes 183
  • Selected Bibliography 185
  • Index 187
  • About the Author 191
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