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Full text of "The Discovery Of The Child"

THE HISTORY OF METHODS                    27

a new affective education/' in Germany half a century later
Fechner and Wundt founded experimental psychology. The two
currents grew and developed separately in the schools. Academic
pedagogy continued to evolve on the old foundations, whilst side
by side mental tests were given to the students which, however,
did not affect education in the least.

The experiments of Itard on the contrary, carried out only
slightly earlier, were a real beginning of scientific education, capable
of modifying both educational methods and the pupils. As it
came into being among deficient children, however, it was not taken
into serious consideration in the educational world.

But the merit of having completed a real educational system
for defective children belongs to Edward Seguin, who was first
a teacher and then a doctor. Beginning with the experiments
of Itard, he applied them, modifying and completing the method,
during ten years of experience with children who had been taken
from the asylum and brought together in a little school in the rue
Pigalle in Paris. This method was published for the first time in
a volume of about six hundred pages, published in Paris with the
title, Traitement Moral, Hygiene et Education des Mots.

Later on, Seguin emigrated to the United States of America,
where there were founded many institutions for defectives, and
where Seguin, after twenty years more of experience, published a
second edition of his method which bore a different title,
Idiocy and its Treatment by the Physiological Method. This-
volume was published in New York in 1866. In it Seguin defined
clearly a method of education which he called a physiological
method. He no longer refers in the title to the education of
idiots almost as if it were special to them, but he speaks of
idiocy as being treated by a physiological method.

If we remember that pedagogy had always been based on
psychology and that Wundt postulated a physiological psychology,
one must be struck by the coincidence of these conceptions
led to suspect that the physiological method may ha\
connection with physiological psychology.