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Productive Labor and Occupations: From Dewey to Makarenko

Education through occupations is a system of teaching children using tasks that are analogous or similar to productive tasks in the workplace or the home. It can be distinguished from vocational education by the fact that its aims extend beyond the attainment of vocational skill to encompass civic education. Education through occupations is most closely connected to the work of the American educator and philosopher John Dewey (1859–1952), who made it the centerpiece of his educational program and gave the term a particular significance, but in its more general sense, the term can also encompass the work of other scholars, including the Soviet educational theorist Anton Makarenko (1888–1939). In what follows, the scope and aims of Deweyan education through occupations are outlined and contrasted with ...

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