Schools of Philosophy (B.Ed First year note)

Schools of Philosophy with reference to Philosophical premises, Objectives, Educational process, Curriculum, Role of teacher and Role of Students in the context of school education

6.4.1 Idealism

6.4.2 Naturalism

6.4.3 Realism

6.4.4 Pragmatism

6.4.1   Idealism

Idealism is the oldest school of philosophical thought. Idealism believes in the existence of spiritual world apart from the physical world. Plato is considered as the chief propagator of idealism.

According to Plato, ideas are the eternal truth. This eternal truth can be achieved by attainment of three spiritual values: truth, beauty and goodness.

According to this philosophy, this material universe is only an incomplete expression of reality, a mere copy or caricature of idea. It argues that the beauty of things are perishable but the idea of beauty persists (continues) forever.

6.4.1.1  Philosophical premises/Features/ Fundamental Principles of  Idealism

The features or fundamental principles of idealisms are as follow:

  1. The whole universe is made of ideas.
  2. The ultimate reality is spiritual rather than material.
  3. The physical world is not a reality. It is changeable. The world of ideas is reality because it is everlasting or eternal.
  4. The physical world is only an illusion.
  5. Soul is the source of the world of ideas.
  6. A person is a spiritual organism.
  7. The ultimate aim of life is self-realization.
  8. Self-realization can only be attained by the proper guidance of a teacher who himself/herself has attained self-realization.
  9. It focuses on mental aspects than natural one.
  10. It regards evil as negative value.
  11. People should follow three moral values to get ultimate reality. These moral values are ‘truth’, ‘goodness’ and ‘beauty’.
  12. Moral values can be attained through four good conducts of self-control, patience, knowledge and justice.

6.4.1.2  Idealism and Aims/Objectives of Education

The main aim of objectives of idealisms are as follow:

  1. Attainment of moral values
  2. Character development
  3. Physical development
  4. Development of intellect and consciousness
  5. Preparation of efficient citizen
  6. Development of individual according to their ability
  7. Workers or common people
  8. Warriors
  9. Guardians or rulers
  10. Preservation of culture
  11. Control over emotion or instinct
  12. Focus on universal education

6.4.1.3 Educational Process of Idealistic Education

Idealistic education emphasizes the following process to apply in teaching learning activities;

  1. Discipline based educative process
  2. Initiation for interest
  3. Learning through imitation
  4. Learning through reading and lecturing
  5. Achievement of higher goal
  6. Teacher-centered education process
  7. Focusing on self-activity and creativity.

6.4.1.4  Idealism and Curriculum

The curriculum of idealism is prepared to the attainment of the moral values of truth, goodness and beauty which are essential for the attainment of self-realization.

It believes that eternal truth can be acquired through only the attainment of self-realization. Idealism stresses on such curriculum which brings all perfection to learners. It believes that it is curriculum which constructs ideal personality of a learner.

Curriculum must be based on idealistic thought, values, principles and experience which are able to bring spiritual change in human personality.

Curriculum must activate/develop human mind and foster learners’ creativity. The moral values of truth, goodness and beauty can be achieved through the following three types of activities;

  1. Intellectual activities
  2. Moral activities
  3. Aesthetic activities         

1. Intellectual activities

An individual needs intellectual activities for the attainment of the moral value ‘truth’. An intellectual person can differentiate between truth and untruth.

Only intellectual person can achieve ultimate reality. Plato has suggested inclusion of language, literature, history, geography, mathematics and physical education in curriculum for the development of intellectual activities.

2. Moral activities

An individual should be moral to attain the moral value of ‘goodness’. Only a moral individual can differentiate between good and bad.

Plato has suggested the inclusion of religion, ethics and spiritual education in curriculum for the development of moral activities in an individual.

3. Aesthetic activities

Aesthetic activities are needed for the attainment of the moral value of ‘beauty’. Aesthetic activities enable an individual to differentiate between beautiful and not beautiful.

Plato has suggested the inclusion of art and music in curriculum for the development of aesthetic activities.

6.4.1.5 Idealism and Role of Teacher

Idealism focuses on self-realization for the attainment of eternal truth. It believes that only a self-realized teacher can help the learner in this process. Idealism has determined the following roles of a teacher;

  1. A person who has attained self-realization
  2. Creator of learning environment
  3. Leader of educative process
  4. Helping learner in the attainment of supreme soul
  5. An ideal role model
  6. A gardener

6.4.1.5 Idealism and Role of Students

Idealism has determined the following roles of the students;

  1. An organism having soul
  2. A disciplined person
  3. A curious person
  4. A moral and good character person

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