Dewey and European Education

pp 133-140

John Dewey’s Teaching Methods in the Discussion on German-Language Kindergartens — A Case of Non-Perception?

  • Barbara Sörensen CriblezAffiliated withAarhaldenstraße 26

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At the beginning of the 20th century, German-language kindergartens were completely overshadowed by Friedrich Froebel’s tradition. The search for new forms of teaching started mainly by taking over the body of thinking developed by teaching reformers. John Dewey’s work was only accorded marginal examination. The person who got to grips most intensively with John Dewey and the American tradition of kindergarten teaching during the first half of the 20th century is Emmy Walser, one of the leading personalities in the kindergarten movement in Switzerland. As a result, the “free working method” developed in Switzerland as the new method. Dewey’s educational philosophy was reduced to the methodology of the free working method which had the effect of giving new life to Froebel’s ideas.