Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Before MI Theory

Educationalists who have inspired the teaching of young children.

You have been asking for information about the  theory of multiple intelligences, but before we look into this let's look at some earlier theories. Gardner's multiple intelligences theory came about in the 1980s but there were many other theories before and other educationalists have built on these since then. Today let us look at two educationalists whose infuence has particularly been on the teaching and learning of younger children; Friedrich Froebel and Marie Montessori.

Friedrich Wilhelm Froebel 1782 - 1852

When we train to be a teacher the training we receive is based on a philosophy of education of one sort or another.

My own teacher training was at the Froebel Educational Institute in London. My teaching methods are underpinned by this training whilst I have adopted, adapted and included into my practice many other styles and methods found to be successful over the years. We need to find the best in all the philosphies and make them our own.

Friedrich Froebel was born in Oberweissbach, Thuringia. In 1826, he published The Education of Man, a difficult book to understand, in which he discusses his educational philosophy. The first Froebel school was opened in 1828 and another in 1837.

Froebel believed that a child, similar to a plant, should be cultivated following nature’s law. In naming his schools kindergarten he reflected this belief. Froebel introduced the notion of continuity in human development, which originated in his observation of the growth of trees (Froebel's own naturalistic intelligence). He saw the stage of a new bud as continuing in the whole development of a tree. In the same way, the full development of childhood continued into adulthood. If one prior stage was not fully completed, then the next stage could not be fully developed. However, Froebel saw early childhood and later childhood as stages that were significant in the whole development of an individual, not simply preparation for adulthood.

Click here to read more.

Another educationalist that is popular today is Marie Montessori (1870 – 1952)

I am often asked about Montessori methods and schools by parents of a first child, keen to find the best education for their offspring. Only they can decide whether this is right for their child, but I hope the following will give some background information to help them to make a choice and to inform discussions when they visit schools.

Maria Montessori lived during the first half of the last century and has influenced education in the US, the UK and other countries in many ways. She was an unusual teenager who chose, unlike others of her gender, to train as an engineer (Montessori's own scientific intelligence). However, one at college, her interest in the mechanical was diverted to the study of the workings not of machines but the human body, and she qualified in medicine in 1886. She was the first woman to do so in Italy.

Through her medical work she came in contact with ‘idiot children’ in asylums and this led her on to an interest in education and the way these children had been taught. She began to believe that mental deficiency was a pedagogical problem. She read works of many previous educationalists, including Froebel, drew up her own theories, and was eventually made director of a medical-pedagogical institute.

Montessori emphasised the importance of the environment in children’s education. ‘Put children in the wrong environment and their development will be abnormal; they will become the deviated adults we now know. Create the right environment for them and their characters will develop normally.’ (Might this be pointing towards developing their interpersonal intelligence?)

Click here to read the complete article.

With kind regards,


Margaret Warner
Dip. S.M.S., A.C.P., M.A. Ed.

International Education Consultant

Lesson plan templates http://www.discover-multiple-intelligences.com/mawbookletlp.htm

MAW Education http://www.maweducation.co.uk
MAW Publicationshttp://www.discover-multiple-intelligences.com

No comments:

Post a Comment