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Education. A short history of education. Content. S1 ----------- S2. Medium /Method. Purpose. Education Process. Informal Beginnings. The earliest educational processes were informal sharings of information at home. gathering food providing shelter making weapons and other tools

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A short history of education



S1 ----------- S2

Medium /Method


Education Process

Informal beginnings
Informal Beginnings

The earliest educational

processes were informal

sharings of information

at home.

gathering food

providing shelter

making weapons and other tools

learning language

acquiring the values, behavior,

and religious rites or practices of

a given culture.

Formal education begins here
Formal Education Begins Here

  • The priests, witch doctors or shamans were perhaps the earliest formal teachers, sharing their secrets with chosen ones. Almost all the teaching was oral.


  • content fixed, sequenced, etc

  • Specific time, place

  • Evaluation

Knowledge is power
Knowledge is Power

  • Teach a few to retain power and status

  • Witchdoctors, sharmans, priests, Brahmins

    traditionally held power and influence over kings and leaders


With the development of writing and mathematical

symbols, the priests in ancient Egypt (3000 BC),

priests taught not only religion but also the principles

of writing, the sciences, mathematics, and


But to a select few.



Formal education in China temple.

dates to about 2000 BC,

though it thrived

particularly during the

Eastern Zhou Dynasty,

from 770 to 300 BC.

The curriculum stressed

philosophy, poetry, and

Ethics of Confucius, Laozi

(Lao-tzu), and

other philosophers.


Partnership in Education temple.

Jewish religious leaders, known as rabbis, advised parents to teach their children religious beliefs, law, ethical practices, and vocational skills. Both boys and girls were introduced to religion by studying the Torah, the most sacred document of Judaism. Rabbis taught in schools within synagogues, places of worship and religious study.


The State takes an Interest temple.

Athens (500BC)

In Greece, the state began to take in interest in the development of the young through education. The Athenians believed a free man should have a liberal education in order to perform his civic duties and for his own personal development.

The Greeks focused on both the training of the mind and the body.

But the emphasis depended on the particular city state.

Dance Drama Music Literature Sports Philosophy Rhetoric

Lofty ideals

Plato: temple. established a school in Athens called the Academy regarded as the first school.

The objective of education was to seek the truth.

Essential for good leadership.

Lofty Ideals

Socrates (philosopher and Teacher) forced his students to think deeply about the meaning of life, truth, and justice from a non-religious perspective.

From religious to secular values
From Religious to Secular Values temple.

  • Greek Drama, Music and Dance were tied to religion.

  • Rhetoric, Logic and Argument was taught in order to mold good citizens and good leaders.

Superstition logic or science
Superstition, Logic or Science? temple.

  • Hippocrates is generally credited with turning away from divine notions of medicine and using observation of the body as a basis for medical knowledge.

  • changes in diet, beneficial drugs, and keeping the body "in balance" were the key.

Was it universal
Was it Universal? temple.

  • Boys: grammar, rhetoric, dialectic - these were meant to help students communicate effectively, and included a study of literature and language - arithmetic, music, geometry and astronomy. And Sports

  • Girls: weaving and other household chores, dancing, music, and physical education sometime in schools but often at home by males.

  • Girls intended to be *hetaerae (companions) were educated in schools where they also learned grammar, rhetoric, and dialectic.

  • Slaves were not educated. *he ti ri

A less lofty ideal education for military defence
A Less Lofty Ideal? temple. Education for Military Defence

  • In Sparta education was for the State and its survival.

  • Children selected for different roles.

  • Those physically stronger were trained soldiers.

  • Removed from family and family bonds.

  • Very harsh training.

Under one roof the library at alexandria egypt
Under One Roof temple. The Library at Alexandria (Egypt)

Undertaking by Alexander the Great (350 BC)

  • Collected all works by Egyptian, Jewish, Greek thinkers and teachers (more than 2000 years of knowledge).

  • Oldest University administered by the Greeks and Egyptians

  • Greek, Egyptian, Jewish and later

    Christian scholars studied here.

Greek education the model
Greek Education the Model temple.

The Romans instituted State education

Non-religious based on Greek Model

  • Rules of argument

  • grammar, rhetoric, logic, mathematics

  • ethics, military science, natural science, geography, history, and law.

  • Purpose: Good citizens and good leaders

A shift in focus
A Shift in Focus temple.

  • Quintilian, an influential Roman educator who lived in the 1st century AD, wrote that education should be based on the stages of individual development from childhood to adulthood.

  • specific lessons for each stage.

  • suited to the student’s readiness and ability to learn new material.

  • make learning interesting and attractive

Re merging of the secular and religious
Re-Merging of the Secular and Religious temple.

  • Early Christian Era. Very interested in all kinds of knowledge. Vast collections of materials held in Monasteries .

  • Also at Alexandria


If it isn’t in the Bible… temple.

Middle Ages, 5th to the 15th century, Western society and education were heavily shaped by Christianity,

The Church schools - elementary level.

Monasteries and cathedrals - secondary education.

Much of the teaching in these and universities directed at learning religious content in Latin.

Limited opportunities for women.

Schools were attended primarily by persons

planning to enter religious life such as priests,

monks, or nuns as well as children of

important people.

It is not the truth
….it is not the truth temple.

  • This was not a time of broad-based scientific or a varied curriculum.

  • Scientific ideas inconsistent with biblical teaching was discouraged.

  • But literacy -- in Latin and local languages spread as a result of the study of the scriptures.

  • Many unofficial translations of the Bible.

The arabs
The Arabs temple.

  • Knowledge from the ancient Egyptians and Greeks infiltrated into European Universities via Arab scholars who had translated and preserved many of the Greek manuscripts on mathematics, natural science, medicine, and philosophy.

  • The Arabic number system was especially important, and became the foundation of Western arithmetic.

    (xvii + vi + ix = )

AL-BIRUNI973 - 1048Arab Scholar



Re birth of knowledge
Re-birth of Knowledge ignore knowledge in the sciences and mathematics developed

  • Partly due to the declining influence of religion.

  • Great interest in Art, Architecture, Poetry, Literature of the Romans and Greeks.

  • Education restricted to male children of Aristocrats – future leaders

  • Patronage system for the gifted poor.


Education for All? ignore knowledge in the sciences and mathematics developed The Age of Enlightenment in the 18th century produced important changes in education and educational theory. During the Enlightenment, educators believed all people could improve their lives and society by using their reason, their powers of critical thinking.


New Ideas, Theories and Practices ignore knowledge in the sciences and mathematics developed

(Education becomes a discipline)

Jean Jacques Rousseau(1712-1778)

  • developed an educational method based on the natural world and the senses.

    (1) concrete (sight, sound, touch) before abstract

    (2) immediate t before remote;

    (3) easy exercises before complex ones;

    (4) always proceed gradually, cumulatively, and slowly.


  • German educator ignore knowledge in the sciences and mathematics developed Friedrich Froebel (1782-1852) created the earliest kindergarten, a form of preschool education that literally means “child’s garden” in German


  • Herbert Spencer ignore knowledge in the sciences and mathematics developed strongly influenced education in the mid-19th century with social theories based on the theory of evolution developed by British naturalist Charles Darwin.

  • Promoted competition to counter mediocrity.

  • Spencer believed that people in industrialized society neededscientific rather than classical education.

5 areas of the curriculum
5 Areas of the Curriculum ignore knowledge in the sciences and mathematics developed

  • Emphasizing education in practical skills, he advocated a curriculum featuring lessons in five areas:

  • Health education

  • Life and vocational skills (3 R’s + Science)

  • Parenting skills

  • Civics and politics; and

  • Leisure and recreation.

    Spencer’s ideas on education

    were eagerly accepted in

    the United States.

Jean piaget 1896 1980
Jean Piaget ignore knowledge in the sciences and mathematics developed (1896-1980 )

  • recognized for his studies of the mental development of children. The most influential educationist in modern times.

Father of Cognitive Psychology


Formal ignore knowledge in the sciences and mathematics developed

Specified Period

Structured curriculum







Religion / Church






Flexible in time and


What do we train or educate?




For What / Whom?



Family / Culture








Ignite a passion for






One to One




Group work

References ignore knowledge in the sciences and mathematics developed

  • Internet encyclopedia of philosophy

  • MSN Encarta – A History of Education

  • A Short History of Education


  • The Library of Alexandria in northern Egypt became, from the 3rd century BC, the outstanding center of Greek culture. It also soon attracted a large Jewish population, making it the largest center for Jewish scholarship in the ancient world.

  • In addition, it later became a major focal point for the development of Christian thought.

  • The Museum, or Shrine to the Muses, which included the library and school, was founded by Ptolemy I. The institution was from the beginning intended as a great international school and library.

  • The library, eventually containing more than a half million volumes, was mostly in Greek.

  • It served as a repository for every Greek work of the classical period that could be found. Had the library lasted, it would have presented to modern scholars nearly every ancient book for study.


  • Rousseau 3rd century BC, the outstanding center of Greek culture. It also soon attracted a large Jewish population, making it the largest center for Jewish scholarship in the ancient world.

  • Piaget

  • Dewey

  • Knowledge / Truth / Beauty

  • Information / How to / Apprentices and Guilds

  • Processing – thinking

  • Education for citizenship