Envisioning a Thoreauvian School

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Hockley, Clair
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Education
Linking theory and practice stands as a foundational and recurring theme in educational discourse. This study contributes to the discussion through an examination of the ideas of Henry David Thoreau. Thoreau’s ideas on education are elaborated through a chronological examination of his works, themes are drawn, and implications for schooling deduced. From this distillation, a reification of Thoreau’s ideas finds articulation within the context provided by a major international report: Learning: the Treasure Within Report to UNESCO of the International Commission on Education for the Twenty-first Century. Commonly referred to as the Delores Report, the document offers an heuristic umbrella for a detailed explication of a school congruent with Thoreau’s ideas within four broad ‘pillars’ of learning: Learning to Know, Learning to Do, Learning to Live Together, and Learning to Be. The quest for fidelity between the writings of Thoreau and this study’s extrapolations from those writings to envision a Thoreauvian school concludes with an empathetic narrative. The final details of this envisioning are presented in the words and the voice Thoreau himself may have used.
Henry David Thoreau , education methodology , experimental education , education philosophy , Delores Report , learning methodologies