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Philosophy Of W.E.B. Du Bois Versus Booker T. Washington

1839 words - 7 pages

Women should not have the chance for an academic education. They should be trained to cook, clean, and take care of children. What better way would a woman help society? Would she help her neighbor more by teaching them mathematics they will never use or by helping their neighbor raise children? This is similar to what Booker T. Washington claimed about African Americans. He stated that the African Americans should attend vocational schools rather than receive an academic education so they could better further social change. W.E.B DuBois had a different approach to further social change by stating that some African Americans should go to academic schools, while others had trades, and some were considered fools who cannot learn. I believe that all children have the ability to learn whether they are black, brown, honeysuckle, or blue. Children all learn in different ways and in order to teach all children we must discover what way each child learns best. John and Evelyn Dewey demonstrate learn by doing and say that is the best approach to learning. I believe they are correct in some aspects. I will attempt to explain my philosophy on the best way to teach all children regardless of race or gender.

W.E.B. DuBois attempted to tell African Americans what they should learn throughout schooling. He thought academics were of the utmost importance in order for African Americans to exist socially in society. Through academic schooling, he thought that 10 percent of the African American society would succeed and move on to become doctors, lawyers, politicians, etc.; they were called “the talented ten.” The subject material that would advance their learning would consist of the “trivium” and the “quadrivium.” The trivium was the academic subjects such as reading, writing, and arithmetic. The quadrivium was subjects such as philosophy or ethics (DuBois, 83). However, there were two different views at this time, Washington completely disagreed and wanted the African Americans to go to vocational school and learn trades so they are better able to help one another. He stated that “it is better to know how to lay bricks to help a person in need rather than have the ability to speak Greek to them.” Though both men had the same goal, they wanted to accomplish it in extremely different ways. The way to accomplish any goal is by teaching students as much as we can. In this case, we can teach them academics and trades. We can do this by Dewey’s principle of learn by doing. For example, the students would be able to learn arithmetic by playing store and it would also be a vocational trade. This material would help the students in the future regardless of the path that they choose later in life. I will encourage all of my students to follow whatever they wish to achieve. We all have our place in this world.

Everyone has a contribution in this world to make, even African Americans. DuBois continually stressed this to his...

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