Play, Work and Education: Situating a Froebelian Debate Juego, trabajo y educación: situando un debate froebelianoReport as inadecuate

Play, Work and Education: Situating a Froebelian Debate Juego, trabajo y educación: situando un debate froebeliano - Download this document for free, or read online. Document in PDF available to download.

Online Submission, Bordón v65 n1 p59-77 2013

Currently, the place of play in schooling and education is controversial. Even in pre-school, where play is most likely to be found, its status is often precarious. This article notes that in many ancient religious traditions, play is sometimes viewed as sinful, whereas work, its antithesis, is seen as virtuous. The German educationist, Friedrich Froebel, departed radically from these evaluations and devised a system of educative play based on toys and games to be used in his institution for the education of young children, the kindergarten. Nevertheless, while at the same time as being a prominent advocate of the notion that play was a worthwhile and necessary part of an early childhood curriculum, Froebel thought it subordinate in value to what it was intended to lead to, work of a manual nature. The reading of Froebel and the Froebel Movement presented here situates his conceptions of play and work within the intellectual context of German Romanticism and Idealist philosophy. The main contours of thought on play and work are traced in the writings of Kant, Schiller, Hegel and Marx, through a consideration of work as both emancipatory and alienating. This theme is pursued in the thought of leading English Romantics and various figures within the Marxist tradition, including some attached to Soviet ideology. It is argued that the Froebel revisionists, like Schrader Breymann and many Froebelians inspired by G. Stanley Hall and John Dewey, tended to abandon the view of work embraced by Froebel and focused more on play, aided by the interests and findings of the developing field of psychology and the lengthening of compulsory schooling.

Descriptors: Play, Employment, Kindergarten, Romanticism, Philosophy, Humanism, Playgrounds, Creativity, Vocational Education, Educational History, Foreign Countries

Author: Brehony, Kevin J.


Related documents