This is a short post to give a little break from the different philosophies. Next time read about some prevalent philosophies in the Western educational world today.
John Dewey, in the preface on his essay “Experience & Education“, stated that “any movement that thinks and acts in terms of an ‘ism becomes so involved in reaction against other ‘isms that it is unwittingly controlled by them.” Perhaps he has a good point.
In the last post I gave some examples of teacher- and child-centered philosophies. Each of these were presented as ‘isms’. There are many more of these, ranging from Perennialism to Humanism, Idealism to Behaviorism, and others. The question in this post is: Are the ‘isms necessary when we talk about a homeschooling philosophy?
In general, the answer is no. A lot of homeschoolers will not have aligned their homeschooling philosophy consciously with one of these terms. If you say that your homeschooling philosophy is one of Progressivism, you most likely will get a blank look or an inquiry to tell them more. Instead they usually associate more with a method, such as Eclectic, Classical, Traditional, etc.
There are some homeschoolers who will say their philosophy is Christian. This does not happen often but it seems to be increasing in my searches. I will direct you to two examples: BJU Christian Philosophy of Education and a random Christian school’s Philosophy of Christian Education.
Or others will state their philosophy is Secular.
Either way, these ‘philosophies’ are really aligned with those mentioned in the earlier posts. Not all Christians believe that students learn the same way. They do not all place their focus on the same aspects, therefore their philosophies are not the same and cannot accurately be lumped under “Christian philosophy”. The same is true of Secularists.
I am personally fascinated by the different philosophies as they pertain to education. By using one of the terms, or ‘isms, of philosophy it could help others to come to understand your homeschooling philosophy. But only if you know, and they know, what those ‘isms mean.
What do you think about using these terms when defining your homeschooling philosophy?
For today perhaps, as tomorrow is Thanksgiving, we can settle on being thankful we can homeschool- whatever our philosophy!
*Disclaimer: Links that go to outside websites/pages do not mean that I am in agreement with these pages, nor are they an endorsement on the part of The Homeschool Post.