History of the Education and Caretaking of Children


Ancient Greece and Rome

400 B.C. - 200 A.D.

Middle Ages

500 - 1450

Church ruled during this time. Monks and Nuns taught children who were called oblate s. Some of these children became teachers and were kinder and gentler to their students. They transcribed works and documents

Renaissance and the Reformation

1300 - 1600

Printing Press was developed. Sir Thomas More and Desiderius Erasmus encouraged parents and teachers to avoid using severe physical punishments as a way to motivate children

John Locke

1632 - 1704

Children have a blank slate and knowledge is received through senses. Children should be free to move and explore their bodies. Did not like corporal punishment and though that there were better forms of discipline.

The Age of Enlightenment

1700 - 1800

Movement away from religion

Jean Jacques Rousseau

1712 - 1778

Disagreed with Locke's belief that one should always reason with children. Children were not born evil. Education should begin at birth and go through adulthood. Direct experience and exploration of the environment is how children learn (learn from play).

Johann Pestalozzi

1746 - 1827

Laid the foundation for 19th century education. Believed that all children had the right to education and could benefit from it. First year is the most important for development. Did not think that all children should be taught using memorization but should be learned through self discovery.

Robert Owen

1771 - 1858

Against child labor and worked to abolish it at his mills. First infant school in England for children 3-10. Taught Sensory learning, stories, singing, dance, nature study, and physical exercise. His ideas of education are still found in early childhood programs.

Friedrich Wilhelm Froebel

1782 - 1852

Established the first kindergarten. Guided play by the teacher who went over three forms of knowledge: forms of life, forms of mathematics, forms of beauty. This became the base for learning and publicly supported programs.

John Dewey

1859 - 1952

Influential spokesperson for the progressive movement. Against learning by drill and recitation. Started schools to help children grow physically, intellectually, and socially. Wanted them to think independently. Mainly focused on the children's interest and not the adult

Margaret and Rachel McMillan

1859 - 1931

Started a nursery school to work with poor children. This was for their education and well being.Worked to train teachers and work with the whole child-social, emotional, and physical development.

Plato 428-348

Believed that children had essential knowledge born within them. Girls should be educated. He was against corporal punishment.

Aristotle 384-322 B.C.

Thought children developed good habits early in life. Interested in the world visible to the senses and the logical organization of thought

Quintilian 35-95 A.D.

Encouraged parents to allow young kids to play. Believed in imitation rather than intimidation.

Martin Luther 1483-1546

Believed that girls should be taught. Wanted children to learn to read so they could read the bible.

John Amos Comenius 1592-1670

The father of Early Childhood Education. Wrote about education and how to teach. Believed in a progressive school system where children would learn at different levels. Realized that children learned the most from 0-6 years of age. Created the first picture book.