Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi

Educator, born Zurich, Switzerland, 1746; died Brugg, 1827. Of Calvinist upbringing, he became a disciple of Rousseau and ever remained outside the pale of dogmatic Christianity. He studied law and took up farming, but was a poor business man, and, after a period of dire poverty, became a schoolmaster at Stanz, 1798, opening a school with normal school attached, at the Castle of Burgdorf, 1799, which he transferred successively to Münchenbuchsee and Yverdun. Although students flocked to him from many countries, dissension and his lack of organization led to the school's closing, 1825. In spite of numerous deficiencies, Pestalozzi originated the modern psychological tendency in education and the "object lesson" method, the core of his whole system. His ideas are embodied in the present school systems of many European states, as well as of England and America, where, in improved form, they are still in use. Pestalozzi never forgot that he was treated kindly by Catholics, and encouraged by the Capuchins when he was distrusted and ridiculed by others.

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