Education: Pedagogical Peace?

Progressive education was enjoying a boost last week from the ranks of its professional enemies—the Essentialists. Widely known are the aims of the Progressives: informal learning through active experience; the development of initiative, responsibility and the mastery of basic subjects by encouraging pupils as individuals, with teachers acting more as guides than as formal instructors. Less familiar is Essentialism, although hosts of U.S. citizens lean toward the Essentialists. This educational wing would give pupils systematic training in traditional subjects; discipline is stressed and informal learning strictly subordinated.

But now the Essentialist chairman was talking strongly out of school. Wrote Fred Alden Shaw,...

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