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The History of Childhood Paradigm Shifts in Western Childhood Adapted from:

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1 The History of Childhood Paradigm Shifts in Western Childhood Adapted from:

2 Children in the Middle Ages: (Europe) Infancy is the only period of “childhood.” Once a child is able to eat, sleep, dress, and act independently, they are expected to enter adult society. Lower class children worked on the family property. Upper class children were apprentices/courtiers.

3 Children in the Middle Ages: (Europe) Young people take on the work of an adult as they are able. Children are acculturated, not educated. Children dressed and acted as adults.

4 Children in the Renaissance: (Europe) Infancy is “childhood.” More and more noble children are tutored before they become courtiers. Children’s “games” are preparation for adulthood with serious consequences. Children are “workers” in all classes.

5 Lower classes work at home. Upper class children are sent off. Children dressed and acted as adults with few exceptions. Apprenticeship Leagues begin. Children in the Renaissance: (Europe)

6 Children in the Reformation (Europe) Infancy is “childhood.” Age of Reason is established. Religious education is essential. Children are still seen as workers. Their role depends on their class.

7 The work ethic is established. Children are still seen as little adults. Grammar schools begin. Children in the Reformation (Europe) Catherine of Aragon Martin Luther

8 Children in the Enlightenment: (Europe) Children are seen as a blank slate (Locke 1690s). Children learn through experience. Proper experience equals education. Children still seen as workers in the lower class. Upper class children can still be apprenticed/courtiers.

9 Noble children are pretty toys. Children dressed and acted as adults. Beginning of children’s literature for entertainment (1740s Newbery). Children in the Enlightenment: (Europe)

10 Children in the Industrial Revolution: ( US) Children are seen as a blank slate. Upper class children stay with their families. Children learn through experience. Massive urbanization and colonization.

11 Children as laborers is essential to lower class families in farming and industry. National school systems begin. Growth of children’s literature occurs. Children in the Industrial Revolution: ( US)

12 Immigration increases. Children are “innocent” (Pastoral). Children’s toys and clothing boom. Children in the Industrial Revolution: ( US)

13 Children in the Gilded Age: (United States) Education is mandatory. First children’s room appears in a library (1890). New laws protect children. This is the Golden Era of children’s literature (1860s- 1930s).

14 The middle class grows. Child services grow. Children are seen as “innocent.” Massive immigration/assimilation occurs. Adolescence is a separate stage. Children in the Gilded Age: (United States)

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