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Lecture 15

EDPS 210 Lecture 15: Dewey - education as growth

Education Policy Studies
Course Code
EDPS 210

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Dewey: Education as growth
The Conditions of Growth
Primary condition of growth is immaturity
Terms capacity and potentiality have a double meaning
o One can be negative and the other positive
o Capacity can mean receptivity or ability/power
o Potentiality can mean dormant state or force
Immaturity means the possibility of growth and the ability to develop
Measure adulthood as a fixed standard
o Attention is on what the child is not and will not have until he
becomes a man
The fulfillment of growing is meant to be an accomplished growth
o Ungrowth is no longer growing
Immaturity designates a positive force or ability the power to grow
Positive and constructive aspect of possibility gives the key to understanding
two main traits of immaturity
o Dependence
If helplessness were all there were in dependence, there would
never be any development
Accompanied in growth of ability suggests it is something
o Plasticity
The specific adaptability of an immature creature for growth
Not the capacity to take on change of form because of external
Ability to learn from experience
Develop dispositions power to modify actions on the basis of
the results of prior experiences
Importance of human life of the two facts of dependence and variable control
summed up in the significance of prolonged pregnancy
o The presence of dependent and learning beings is a stimulus to
nurture and affection
Habits as expressions of growth
Salient features of habits
Habit: an ability to use natural conditions as a means to ends
o Active control of the environment through control of the organs of
Education is an essential phase of growth
o Essential that adjustment be understood in its active sense of control
of means of achieving ends
Habit as habituation is something relatively passive
Significance of habit is not exhausted in its executive and motor phase
Means formation of intellectual and emotional disposition and an increase in
ease, economy, and efficiency of action
Habit marks inclination
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