What Are The Contributions Of Plato To The Philosophy Of Education?


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Robin Burden answered
Plato made several contributions to the field of education.

In my opinion, our modern concept of schooling and education can be largely attributed to this Ancient Greek philosopher.

Plato's contributions to education
Plato didn't invent the idea of educating children, as this existed long before he came along. However, he managed to single-handedly influence the way we educate children for centuries to come.

Before Plato, education was seen as a privilege that only the sons of noble citizens could enjoy - and those children who were lucky enough to receive an education often spent their time being tutored by a relative or parent.

Plato was one of the first people to suggest that all children (boys and girls) should receive an education. He believed that the state should take an interest in the educational development of children, essentially giving birth to the idea of free public (or state) education.

What was Plato's philosophy of education?
According to Plato's philosophy, education was the key to a functional society. He outlined this in his 380BC dialogue entitled Republic.
Plato also believed that talent wasn't genetic or in-born, and that the state should be responsible for seeking out and developing the intellect of children, regardless of their socio-economic backgrounds.

He also stressed the importance of learning different subjects and believed that all children should learn maths and physics, appreciate music, and participate in gymnastics or sports.

Plato also contributed to the idea of structured stages of education (for example, having an elementary school, and then a higher school). He also considered different teaching methods and questioned what should be included in a curriculum.

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