Characteristics of Child Centered Education
As child is the Centre of Education, development of mind, body and spirit of the child should be reflected in the programme and planning of education.
Rousseau advocates that child should be allowed to learn from nature in his natural way without any interference from the adult, that nothing should be taught to him until he is capable of understanding it, that his individuality should be respected, that his natural interests like play and curiosity should form the basis of his education, and that books should be avoided particularly at the early stage and more emphasis should be given to the child sensory and natural development.
The stress laid by Rousseau on the individuality of the child means that the child should be respected, as he is with all his abilities, and drawbacks, that in educating him these should be given due consideration and that all children cannot therefore be treated alike. So child should be treated as the centre of education.
The following points need be considered for promoting child-centered education.
Pestalozzi added a new dimension to educational thought and practice by insisting that education was not the privilege of any single class but the right of every child belonging to different classes.
Freedom was granted to the child to discover things than getting second hand information through books. Emphasis was as they like given on the freedom of children to learn and create.
Froebel developed plays, games and songs and occupations, designed especially to stimulate the child’s self-activity. He laid great stress on self development of the child and child’s activity should stem from his own interests.
(iii) Process of spontaneous development:
The child progresses at ids own speed in a subject. The role of the teacher is to understand the child. The child’s freedom and individuality have found expression spontaneously in the lap of nature.
(iv) Development of interest and needs:
The education of child depends on his interest and needs. The physical, social, moral and spiritual development of the child is “the main objective of the child-centered Education.
(v) Education-based on experience:
The main objective of child centered Education is to enable the child to learn through experience which is permanent. The course and subjects should be experience- oriented to meet the need of the child.
Child is the centre of the whole education process. The great philosophers at different times emphasized on it. The role of teacher is like a guide and observer to provide complete freedom to the child to grow naturally. Child-centered Education is the ideal system to manifest the latent talent of the child. In this process education is not an extra venous imposition but natural stimulation for development of the child.