The ideas and concepts of Plato have a resemblance to modern educational principles. Plato advocated “education for all” and did not believe that talent is genetic. Instead, he believed that talent can be found in any child. Therefore, he argued that gifted children should be trained by the state. His hope was that such training would prepare young people for the role of the ruling class.
Plato’s model of education
In Plato’s model of education, a child should begin formal education at age seven. Children should also learn moral education from their elders and play with children of the same gender. After they’ve reached this age, they should separate into genders and play only with their peers of the same gender. This way, children will get five years of education focused on physical, intellectual, and moral aspects. At the end of their education, the child will be a well-rounded human being, with a good attitude and good morals.
According to Plato, education is important to achieve a high level of individual achievement. In his Laws, education refers to the entire process of educating a person and developing the whole person. In addition, education is a vital part of Plato’s philosophy of society. While the Laws are his last work, they contain many of his ideas on education. If you want to learn more about Plato’s model of education, read on.
In Plato’s model, education should be universal. He believed that education could make people better people, and that the goal of education is to mold a person into a good citizen. The aim of education is to promote social welfare and help a person understand reality. However, his philosophy has a few flaws that should be addressed before implementing this model. A good example of this is the importance of communicating with others. Plato believed that education should be universal, and should be provided by the state, but he was never in favor of private education.
Plato believed that education should begin at age seven. In fact, he believed that children should stay with their mothers to learn moral lessons and play with the other genders. At this point, education is divided into two stages: elementary education and higher education. In the first stage, students study languages and basic education in religion. The second stage of education would be focused on gymnastics and music. By the end of the third stage, students should be prepared for military training and physical conditioning.
Whether a person is educated in the way that he or she should be depends on the individual. The latter requires knowledge of the good. Education must help a person develop his or her sense of ideas. In Plato’s model, education is designed to produce a competent adult, who can meet the needs of the state and the people in his society. Ultimately, the goal of education is to make a person a better person.
Plato also believed that ideas are in and of themselves and have substance. He described objects as shadows of an eternal pattern. And objects are merely imperfect copies of these patterns. The human race, he argued, is the eternal man-type. Hence, education should be based on this model. But there are a few fundamental differences between Plato’s model of education and that of a modern educational model.
Plato’s views on moral and ethical education
For example, in the Ethics, Plato describes the human soul as a complex machinery with the same ingredients and structure as the world soul. Because Plato is concerned with the order of the universe, he attributes to the human soul the concepts and ideas necessary to understand all things. But these concepts are limited to the formal conditions of the universe. In other words, the human soul has no intrinsic value in and of itself.
Despite this negative picture, Plato’s writings do contain suggestions that can mitigate the gloomy picture. The Symposium, for example, places the individual soul above the demands of society, whereas the Phaedrus places the community’s needs above the individual’s. Both of these works, though, are from his middle period and do not discuss moral education explicitly. Nonetheless, the philosophical themes of these works point to the importance of moral and ethical education.
While Plato’s stance on moral and ethical education remains unfavorable, the hedonist aspect of his philosophy in Philebus suggests that pleasure is a necessary ingredient of human life. While Plato does not define the concept of happiness, he introduces the idea in a vague way. For this reason, many scholars have argued that we should not pursue pleasure without pursuing virtue.
While Plato’s ethics and moral education are firmly grounded in the human realm, they have a metaphysical underpinning. Although the Socratic dialogues do not explicitly suggest that the search for virtue extends beyond the human realm, the dialogue setting of the Middle Dialogues indicates that Plato’s view of ethics is increasingly concerned with the metaphysical nature of reality. In the dialogues, he posits ‘Forms’ as the true nature of all things, and the Form of the Good as a transcendent principle.
For example, Plato says that the ideal order would be characterized by an upright society without social class divisions. In his Republic, a single class would be equal with a higher class, with the lower classes being slaves and the upper classes enjoying privileges. The ‘overseers’ of the laws are chosen from among the most upright citizens. They meet in secret in the same place as the other citizens.
While Socrates’ hypotheses are based on a simple hypothesis, it does not posit a universal or a single principle. Socrates claims that the virtues can be understood and measured in a different way. Socrates’ hypotheses, based on his conversations with various philosophers, do not have any definite definition. But the higher principles must be attained before a satisfactory starting point is reached.
As for virtues, Socrates emphasizes the importance of justice in life. In his earlier dialogues, he distinguishes between the virtues of courage and moderation. These virtues depend on the intellectual part of the soul. In this view, the intellectual part of the soul is a foundation for other virtues, such as justice. In contrast, dispositional virtues such as virtues are relegated to second place and are of lesser importance.
Plato’s views on gymnastic education
In The Laws, Plato combines music and gymnastics into a single program. Athenians believed that exercise was a powerful cure for disease. This is consistent with Socrates’ emphasis on the supremacy of the soul over the body. But even if Plato’s views on gymnastic education were to be followed today, they are not wholly dissimilar to those of the past. In this essay, I’ll examine Plato’s views on gymnastic education.
Plato advocated a general curriculum in Greece for the children of ruling and military classes. Although he did not mention an education for the industrial class, his teaching of music and gymnastics was still necessary for a harmonious soul. By providing these lessons and training, students are able to build good habits and values. In addition to improving the soul and body, this program instilled the virtues of courage, reason, and temperance.
Music and gymnastics also exercise the reason. In this way, gymnastic training enables children to exercise their reason and prepare it for its proper function as adults. At the same time, music and gymnastic training encourage the development of necessary appetites and eliminate unnecessary ones. Therefore, Plato emphasizes the importance of a well-rounded education in both arts. In addition to these benefits, music and gymnastics also develop the brain.
In addition, Socrates insists on the nature of philosophy and dialectics. Socrates stresses that the ideal student should love hard work. A philosopher-king must not be a selfish philosopher. Similarly, a good guardian must be educated in the arts and sciences, so that they can rule and enlighten others. But even so, philosopher-kings must be warriors.
In addition to his criticisms of the arts, Plato’s views on gymnastic education are also controversial. He argues for an educational approach that emphasizes the importance of aesthetics and morals. Plato emphasized the importance of education for the control of the guardians, but he also endorsed the value of free, public education. And he is a good precursor of Montessori and Froebel, who both promote the importance of education.
In his time, gymnasium sports included games and special exercises for public festivals. The training of amateur and professional gymnasts was not separated; they were mixed. The palaestras also housed prizefighters, but this was thought to be ungenteel for children. Instead, the juveniles favored the ball and the top. But the importance of physical education was far more widespread than today.