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Philosophies in Education Teacher-centered and student-centered are two categories philosophies of education can be broken into Teacher-centered philosophies emphasize transferring knowledge and skills from one generation to another Student-centered philosophies focus on individual needs and prepare students for their future Together teachers and students work on what and how the students will learn There are two main teacher-centered philosophies essentialism and perennialism Essentialism and perennialism are similar in their methods of teaching Both are back to the basic approaches toward school that teaches students through traditional academic courses They teach students mandatory classes such as math science literature and foreign language Essentialists and perennialists allow few elective courses The only elective option for a perennialist student is foreign language When elective courses are offered in essentialist classrooms they focus on creativity and basic techniques Only students who master all the required material will move on to a higher level Essentialism and perennialism are similar in that the both have strict curriculum requirements and both aim to sharpen students intellect and morals While in the essentialists classroom they study from textbooks the perennialists classrooms have few textbooks in their room Perennialists organize their school around books and factual information In a perennialists classroom they read Great Books by Darwin Shakespeare and Homer Perennial means everlasting which is why perennialists focus on lessons and questions of the ages Student-centered philosophies are less concerned with curriculum and concentrate more on how to improve society Progressivism Social Reconstruction and Existentialism are the three main student-centered philosophies Progressivism organizes school around concerns curiosity and real life experiences They build curriculum with the experiences interests and ability of the students Students work in small groups moving and talking freely while the teacher walks around asking questions and making suggestions Social Reconstructionism encourages students teachers and schools to focus studies on social inequities and reconstructing society Social changes such as racism pollution poverty drug abuse AIDS and violence provide curriculum and
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