John Dewey’s Theories on Education and Learning: An Introduction to His Life and Work

John Dewey wrote extensively about philosophy, psychology, education, political science, and the arts. In his very full 92 years of life (1859-1952), he not only wrote about the breadth of life, he participated in it as a teacher, social critic, political activist and involved family man. This fully produced video introduces students to his philosophy and his critical studies of education, the arts and the implications of democracy for the lives of individuals and their communities.

Dewey lived in a different era of history than we do, but many of his concerns are very relevant to life today. Maintaining a democracy in the face of diverse ethnic values, educating the young to participate fully in the life of their community, and expanding individual perceptions through participation in the arts were among the issues he examined.

Contemporary examples of the influence of his work include film sequences of noted educator Deborah Meier’s Mission Hill School in Roxbury, Massachusetts; commentary by literature authority Louise Rosenblatt on Dewey’s theories of democratic behavior and philosopher Larry Hickman’s comments on the ways technology changes our experiencing of the world. (Dr. Hickman is also the director of the Center for Dewey Studies in Illinois.) Terminology and the historical context necessary for understanding Dewey’s work are provided by historical materials, newly shot visuals and clever graphics.

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