Progressive education

Length: 15 Pages 3800 Words

To meet the needs of an increasing industrialized Canadian society in the late 1930’s, the elementary curriculum was revised. This essay will explore the changes BC curriculum endured as a result of the progressive movement within the Greater Victoria area by way of the Greater Victoria Survey of Schools of 1937-38 and the Curriculum Guide: The New Programme of Studies 1936-7. The new system is commonly known as progressive education or the “new education”. Jean Barman describes new education as “… embodying a commitment to a child-centered, relatively unstructured curriculum allowing considerable freedom of choice to pupil and teacher alike, the expression of humane, egalitarian, democratic philosophy of education”. The modern curriculum was an attempt to move away from the emphasis of memorization, facts, formalism and unrelated or irrelevant material within the classroom. John Dewey, an educational philosopher, can be held accountable for the radical outlook on education in the early 1900’s. Dewey believed there was a theoretical gap between child-centered and subject centered curriculum. This gap was a failure to recognize interaction between child and curriculum. Individual difference, child reaction a Continue...


This lack of experience created difficulties integrating new methods of teaching demanded by educators. While hands on work was difficult to incorporate into the new reading curriculum, it was the sole responsibility of the teacher to take advantage of the activity interaction method of teaching, introduced by progressivism, to ensure adequate individual differences were being fulfilled. Before browsing through the heart of the new curriculum, it is important to familiarize oneself in the parturition of progressive education before an appreciation for the impact the revisions had within the education system. htm"Some Notes on John Dewey (1859-1952). Manualtechnical training, domestic sciencehome economics agricultural education activities varied between schools but the theories and aims remain constant throughout. A 10,000-vocabulary list had been eliminated and replaced with a 4,000 list. Students were originally required to "articulate words far beyond his understanding", hence more appropriate words were chosen that were related to the child"tms everyday experiences. A permanent feature of the new program was the implementation of scientific testing. Material of this kind could be found in a wide variety of sources: books, text books, reference books, and supplementary readers for all subject were to be made available for students to benefit from through the Free Text Book Branch established in 1929. Significant emphasis was lifted from written work and transferred to visuals through charts, pictures, and objects.