Samuel Wilderspin became a household name in his own lifetime. Befriended by Dickens, lampooned by Cruikshank, his achievements discussed in Parliament, he was one of the best known educators of the 1830s and 1840s. However, Wilderspin’s consistent opposition to denominational education combined with his liberal and advanced views made him unpopular with the Establishment.
Samuel Wilderspin’s fame declined after his retirement in 1847 but his reputation as an infant school educator has survived. Many of his ideas and practices have had a great influence on infant education. In this book, first published in 1982, Wilderspin’s own story is placed in the context of this growing movement led by Owen, Buchanan and Oberlin, and it goes a long way towards reinstating him as one of the prominent figures in the early education movement. This title will be of interest to students of history and education.
Table of Contents
Illustrations; Preface; Abbreviations; Introduction; 1. Early Influences: Nature and the New Church 2. Spitalfields Infant 3. The English Infant School: Buchanan and Owen 4. The English Infant School: Swedenborg and Pestalozzi 5. The Infant School Society 6. Educational Missionary: New Schools and Old 7. Wilderspin in Scotland 8. A National and International Reputation 9. Theory and Practice 10. The Infant School Movement in the 1830s: Crisis 11. The Infant School Movement: New Directions 12. The Liverpool Corporation Schools 1836-1837 13. National Education: Wilderspin versus the Evangelicals 14. The Dublin Model Schools 1837-1839 15. Years of Adversity 16. An Active Retirement; Appendices; Bibliography; Index