progres'sive educa'tion

any of various reformist educational philosophies and methodologies since the late 1800s, applied esp. to elementary schools, that reject the rote recitation and strict discipline of traditional, single-classroom teaching, favoring instead more stimulation of the individual pupil as well as group discussion, more informality in the classroom, a broader curriculum, and use of laboratories, gymnasiums, kitchens, etc., in the school. Also called progressivism.

Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.

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