Jan Amos Comenius, a 17th century protestant educator and pastor, has been called the “father of modern education,” and for good reason. For one thing, he wrote the first picture book with which to teach children.
Paul Heidebrecht lists nine principles that “Comenius observed in nature applicable to education.” I find these quite interesting and useful. If you are familiar with Gregory’s Seven Laws, you might want to compare them to this list, which looks from a different angle at the same activities.
- Nature observes a suitable time
- Nature prepares the material, before she begins to give it form.
- Nature chooses a fit subject to act upon, or first submits one to a suitable treatment in order to make it fit.
- Nature is not confused in its operations, but in its forward progress advances distinctly from one point to another.
- In all the operations of nature, development is from within.
- Nature, in its formative processes, begins with the universal and ends with the particular.
- Nature makes no leaps, but proceeds step by step.
- If nature commences anything, it does not leave off until the operation is completed.
- Nature carefully avoids obstacles and things likely to cause hurt.
Can you use these nine principles to exam your experience as a student and/or teacher?