Progressive Education: Revisioning and Reframing Ontario's Public Schools, 1919-1942

By Theodore Michael Christou

© 2012

Over the course of the twentieth century, North American public school curricula moved away from the classics and the humanities, and towards ‘progressive’ subjects such as health and social studies. This book delves into how progressivist thinking transformed the rhetoric and the structure of schooling during the first half of the twentieth century, with echoes that reverberate strongly today, and investigates historical meanings of progressive education.

Theodore Michael Christou closely examines the case of interwar Ontario, where the entire landscape of public education, including curricula and avenues to post-secondary study, were radically transformed over just twenty years. Christou contextualizes this reformist thinking in light of a social, political, and economic climate of change, which seemed to demand schools that could actively relate learning to the real world. Through its examination of educational journals published throughout the interwar period and previously unexplored archival sources, this book illuminates how the present structure of curricula and schooling were achieved.

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Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 256 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.3in x 0.8in x 9.3in
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SKU# SP003473

  • PUBLISHED SEP 2012

    From: $50.25

    Regular Price: $67.00

    ISBN 9781442645424
  • PUBLISHED SEP 2012

    From: $50.25

    Regular Price: $67.00

Quick Overview

Through its examination of educational journals published throughout the interwar period and previously unexplored archival sources, this book illuminates how the present structure of curricula and schooling were achieved.

Progressive Education: Revisioning and Reframing Ontario's Public Schools, 1919-1942

By Theodore Michael Christou

© 2012

Over the course of the twentieth century, North American public school curricula moved away from the classics and the humanities, and towards ‘progressive’ subjects such as health and social studies. This book delves into how progressivist thinking transformed the rhetoric and the structure of schooling during the first half of the twentieth century, with echoes that reverberate strongly today, and investigates historical meanings of progressive education.

Theodore Michael Christou closely examines the case of interwar Ontario, where the entire landscape of public education, including curricula and avenues to post-secondary study, were radically transformed over just twenty years. Christou contextualizes this reformist thinking in light of a social, political, and economic climate of change, which seemed to demand schools that could actively relate learning to the real world. Through its examination of educational journals published throughout the interwar period and previously unexplored archival sources, this book illuminates how the present structure of curricula and schooling were achieved.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 256 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.3in x 0.8in x 9.3in
  • Reviews

    ‘Christou has given us a deep insight into the progressive thinking of Ontario Educators and lay persons during the inter war years.’
    Robert M. Stamp
    Historical Studies in Education; vol 25:02:2013

    ‘A superb study on education in Ontario in the interwar period, Progressive Education has indeed become required reading for any student of educational history.’
    Anthony Di Mascio
    Histoire sociale / Social History vol 47:92:2014

    ‘Christou’s work is an essential study of progressive educational thought and a useful addition to the field of Canadian education history. It will be of significant help to Canada’s future teachers.’
    George Buri
    Labour/Le Travail, vol 73 2014
  • Author Information

    Theodore Michael Christou is an assistant professor in the Faculty of Education at Queen’s University.

  • Table of contents

    Preface

    Acknowledgments

    Introduction: What Was Progressive Education?

    1 Ontario’s Educational Context in the Interwar Period

    2 Approaching Progressive Education

    3 Progressive as Active Learning: Critiques of Rote Scholarship in School

    • Child Study and Developmental Psychology
    • Social Efficiency and Adjustment to Industry
    • Social Meliorism and Engagement with Social Ills

    4 Progressive as Individualized Instruction: Critiques of Content-Driven Learning

    • Child Study and Developmental Psychology
    • Social Efficiency and Adjustment to Industry
    • Social Meliorism and Engagement with Social Ills

    5 Progressive as Contemporary: Critiques of Learning Correlating Schools and Society

    • Child Study and Developmental Psychology
    • Social Efficiency and Adjustment to Industry
    • Social Meliorism and Engagement with Social Ills

    6 Humanists as the Foil to Progressivists: Resistance to Progressivist Reforms in Ontario

    7 Continuities and Change: Reforming the Curriculum and the War’s Impact on Progressivist Rhetoric, 1937–1942

    Conclusion: Progressive in a Parallel Way

    Appendices

    Appendix A. Public School Enrolments in Ontario

    Appendix B. Composition of the Department of Education

    Appendix C. Circulation Statistics for Source Journals

    Notes

    References

    Index

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