An Essay Concerning Human Understanding (1689) and Letters
Concerning Toleration are examples of Locke’s writings that illustrate his belief in natural law and the fulfillment of the divine purpose for humanity. In John Locke’s writings, An Essay Concerning Human Understanding the philosopher and physician implemented a theoretical and philosophical perspective with enquiries on two questions of thought or critical reasoning, “What is the origin of our ideas?” and “What is the basis of our knowledge?”
Locke’s main work on education – Some Thoughts Concerning Education – originated from letters to a friend. Although the writings are reflections and critical thoughts on the education of a specific child (his friend’s child) in a specific social situation, Locke’s writings are also concerned with education in general.
According to the philosophical writings entitled, Some Thoughts Concerning Education, critical thoughts on the education of the child include: (1) The act of learning is just a part of education. The act of learning is the result of experiences of the child (experiential learning as it is known in our modern and postmodern ethos). Locke’s educational theory often denounced scholasticism and advocated the experimental methods adopted during observations of a friend’s child “the individual education of a gentleman’s son, not the formation of a school system…No man’s knowledge here can go beyond his experience… Learning is not innate. It is often based on the formulation and analysis of ideas and knowledge” (Locke, 1909-1914, § Introductory Note).
(2) Vital to education and learning is the development of character. This includes of wisdom, virtue and ‘good breeding’. Locke held that man’s manners and abilities are an outcome of thinking and education of the child’s mind. “If I have said in the beginning of this discourse… that the difference to be found in the manners ...Show more