2 STUDENT REPLIES
DISCUSSION BOARD FORUM
Replies: Read chapters 10-13 of Gutek and reply to other 2 students post. Compare the content in the other students’ posts to the ideas and/or actions of one or more of the follow: Rousseau, Pestalozzi, Jefferson, or Wollstonecraft.
How are their ideas similar or different? In light of how worldview articles and Blackboard videos present a biblical worldview, how would you analyze the theory and practice of Rousseau, Pestalozzi, Jefferson, or Wollstonecraft with those mentioned in the other student’s initial post?
In your 2 replies of at least 160 words each, cite at least one of the following sources: Gutek textbook, worldview articles, and at least one Blackboard video presentation from this course.
Student #1 Post:
The end of the Medieval Era is characterized as a transitional period when political, social and religious philosophies shifted from Roman Catholic authoritative control to more humanistic and secular nation-states. Two educational thinkers, Desiderius Erasmus and John Calvin, were alive during a similar timeframe and shared a worldview where God was at the center, however their worldviews, philosophies and societal impacts were very different.
An individual’s worldview is uniquely shaped by education, culture, family and many other influences (Wayne, n.d.). As such, Erasmus and Calvin had different perspectives on religion, education and politics. Erasmus was an illegitimate son of a priest, hid his identity and was educated as an elite with a focus on classical Greek, Roman and Latin texts and Roman Catholic theology (Gutek, 2011). Calvin was a product of the emerging middle class, was educated via sponsorship by a family friend and studied to be a lawyer (Gutek, 2011). Both men had the goal of societal unification by educating children with literacy skills and knowledge of the Bible in an effort to build a citizenry based on morality and positive utility in society. They both believed in a worldview that man was “made in the image of God but acted like animals” (Colson Center for Christian Worldview, 2011). Reason, knowledge of the Bible and a unifying society would temper these impulses. However, their differing worldviews impacted how the Bible, education and politics would be interpreted and integrated into society.
As described by Gutek (2011), Erasmus was participatory in the elitist philosophical and theological communities that were critical of the authoritative nature of the Roman Catholic church. Yet, he limited his protesting because he acknowledged the unifying nature of the church. The purpose of education was to teach morality and foster well-rounded citizens rich with a classical liberal arts background. Calvin was not a member of the same socioeconomic group as Erasmus and his experiences as a student and child of a middle-class family provided different values. Calvin, who was a promoter of the Protestant Revolution, sought a more nonauthoritative universal church that was not based on hierarchical norms or man-made traditions. He believed that education be more inclusive for all populations and designed to develop a middle-class workforce with Christian values and freedom.
Over time, as nationalism increased throughout Europe, a greater divide between Roman Catholic and Protestant communities was created. Under Calvin’s influence, the role of education shifted with less attention to classical texts and more to memorization and indoctrination of local political and religious values. At the same time, the Roman Catholic church made efforts to maintain control. Eventually, the effort to unify and provide more freedom to man through education, created conflict and despair.
Colson Center for Christian Worldview [thepointblog]. (2011, February 25). John Stonestreet on Image of God [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch? time_continue=2&v=s1Q7ZoKLCYA
Gutek, G. L. (2011). Historical and Philosophical Foundations of Education: A biographical Introduction. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson.
Wayne, I. (n.d.). What is a Christian worldview? [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://christianworldview.net
Student #2 Post
The medieval thinkers Aquinas and Comenius presented views of learning through and about religion. Religion was the center of politics during their lifetimes, and faith was the pathway to knowledge. Education was clearly important to defend religion, but how a student learned, and what a student learned differed within their philosophies.
Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) viewed life on earth as preparatory to life after death, and education was a pathway to accomplishing the end goal of the “beatific vision of God” (Gutek, 2011, p. 89). Aquinas organized his instructional belief into a hierarchy. Though religion was at the top, language studies and the sciences helped learners reach this goal. Aquinas believed reason needed faith to find truths (Gutek, 2011, p. 88). In his worldview, teachers serve students and are models of virtue (Gutek, 2011, p. 90). This aligns with Tacket’s (2006) characteristic of a biblical worldview that our purpose is to serve God, and by serving students and guiding them morally, is serving God. Aquinas also believed instruction should include both spiritual and physical elements because both contributed to the “salvation of the soul” (Gutek, 2011, p. 89).
Many years after Aquinas’s death, Johann Amos Comenius (1592-1670) believed in a philosophy that was ahead of his time in regard to how children learn. Though both believed the bible as the primary source of instruction, Comenius’s theory began to focus more on the student. Comenius structured school according to a child’s readiness, but also placed importance on the home as a learning environment up until the child reaches age 6 (Gutek, 2011). As he saw much war and political upheaval over religion, Comenius held a worldview of peace. Comenius practiced teaching with a biblical worldview through showing that science explains religion. He upheld a biblical moral code. Gutek (2011) explained “Comenius regarded the Bible as an unerring guide to human conduct and believed that human knowledge, refined in a structured and orderly way in the various sciences, also came from God” (p. 133). Gaining an understanding of the teachings of the Bible would bring about peace in the land.
Gutek, G.L. (2011). Historical and philosophical foundations of education: A biographical introduction. Chicago, IL: Pearson.
Pope, E. (2000). Developing a Biblical Worldview. Retrieved August 27, 2019, from http://www.foundationsforliving.org/articles/foundation/worldview1.html
Tacket, D (2006) What’s a Christian worldview? Retrieved August 27, 2019, from https://www.focusonthefamily.com/faith/whats-a-christian-worldview/