Bringing up Children Defines Origin of Education

Educate as a verb originated in the late Middle English and stems from the Latin verb ‘educare’, to bring up children, according to the Dictionary of Word Histories.  A related word ‘educere’ developed into educe—meaning to develop talents or something not yet recognized—and from this the noun education and the verb educate came into being.

Today education has traveled a long road from then to now, but the process, whatever the labeling, has been going on since the beginning of time. In times past parents were the only ones to educate their children but authorities saw that many were not able to do the job properly and the public took over the job at some early age.

History of education

 “In the beginning, for hundreds of thousands of years, children educated themselves through self-directed play and exploration,” Peter Gray wrote in to Learn, a Psychology Today article August 20, 2008. And that’s quite an interesting observation from the author: Children left to their own devices and feeling free to explore and to let their own inner blueprint, their DNA direct them learned earlier of the stuff of which they were made. That’s a view of perfect childhood but as history shows that seldom worked and in fact was seldom used. Most children in the earlier years were farm hands and weren’t looked upon as future explorers and discoverers. Class distinctions and parental guidance made the difference but still education was a haphazard affair in most societies.

The author went on to explain during the hunter-gatherer stage of life children were more free to explore and to educate themselves and to learn while ‘playing’ what they needed to learn to see them through their more simple existences. Yet, surely some of them were keenly observant of what was growing and what was good for food and like entrepreneurs today, decided to help along nature and consequently the first agriculturists changed the course of history as well as the course of education.

 History of public education in America

April 23, 1635 in Boston, Massachusetts, the first public school in America was started. Reverend John Cotton was the first schoolmaster. In starting this new school he looked back to the Free Grammar School in Boston, England for inspiration. Latin and Greek were taught and that’s why the first public school in the New World was called Boston Latin School. It was free although the need for the school couldn’t wait for a room of its room but was held in the school master’s home. Records show that five of the fifty signers of the U.S. Constitution: John Hancock, Samuel Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Robert Treat Paine and William Hooper had been students at this this school.

History of public education in Europe

Apprenticeships played a large role in educating youth for jobs In both Europe and in America. Those with businesses needed assistance and probably could afford little other than helping younger workers learn a trade. It seemed a likely way to educate youngsters and in some form it’s still practiced today but under more lucrative conditions and labeling. Internships after college are, in essence, a form of an apprenticeship.

Education, in some form, goes on and is at presence undergoing a great deal of inspection. Questions being asked: Is it doing what it sets out to do; is formal education too costly; is college for everyone and especially in the US this question is being asked: Should the states coordinate their instructions? Whatever the answers, learning more about the origin of education will show humans need for knowledge never change; only methods and sources change with time.