John Dewey was an American philosopher, psychologist and educational reformer whose ideas have been influential in education and social reform. Dewey, along with Charles Sanders Peirce and William James, is recognized as one of the founders of the philosophy of pragmatism and of functional psychology.
Let this list of 38 quotations by the American philosopher John Dewey lead you to an inspirational day. Recharge yourself with motivational education, life, thinks sayings, and satisfy your hunger for a better life.
What are the best John Dewey quotes?
We've made this hand-picked collection of quotes to show you what is John Dewey truly willing to say and leave for generations. Whether an inspirational quote or a motivational message about giving your best, we can all benefit from the wisdom, captured within these words.
We only think when we are confronted with problems.
The self is not something ready-made, but something in continuous formation through choice of action.
The good man is the man who, no matter how morally unworthy he has been, is moving to become better.
Every great advance...has issued from a new audacity of imagination.
Without some goals and some efforts to reach it, no man can live.
Skepticism: the mark and even the pose of the educated mind.
To find out what one is fitted to do, and to secure an opportunity to do it, is the key to happiness.
Of all affairs, communication is the most wonderful.
Education is a social process. Education is growth. Education is, not a preparation for life; education is life itself.
To me faith means not worrying.
One lives with so many bad deeds on one's conscience and some good intentions in one's heart.
Luck, bad if not good, will always be with us.
But it has a way of favoring the intelligent and showing its back to the stupid.
Complete adaptation to environment means death.
The essential point in all response is the desire to control environment.
The aim of education should be to teach us rather how to think, than what to think -- rather to improve our minds, so as to enable us to think for ourselves, than to load the memory with the thoughts of other men.
Nature is the mother and the habitat of man, even if sometimes a stepmother and an unfriendly home.
The path of least resistance and least trouble is a mental rut already made.
It requires troublesome work to undertake the alternation of old beliefs. Self-conceit often regards it as a sign of weakness to admit that a belief to which we have once committed ourselves is wrong. We get so identified with an idea that it is literally a pet notion and we rise to its defense and stop our eyes and ears to anything different.
Old ideas give way slowly; for they are more than abstract logical forms and categories, they are habits, predispositions, deeply ingrained attitudes of diversion and preference.
Failure is instructive. The person who really thinks learns quite as much from his failures as from his successes.
No system has ever as yet existed which did not in some form involve the exploitation of some human beings for the advantage of others.
The bad man is the man who no matter how good he has been is beginning to deteriorate, to grow less good. The good man is the man who no matter how morally unworthy he has been is moving to become better. Such a conception makes one severe in judging himself and humane in judging others.
Education is a regulation of the process of coming to share in the social consciousness; and that the adjustment of individual activity on the basis of this social consciousness is the only sure method of social reconstruction.
I know that there are many persons to whom it seems derogatory to link a body of philosophic ideas to the social life and cultureof their epoch. They seem to accept a dogma of immaculate conception of philosophical systems.
To be interested is to be absorbed in, wrapped up in, carried away by, some object. To take an interest is to be on the alert, to care about, to be attentive.
A society which makes provision for participation in its good of all its members on equal terms and which secures flexible readjustment of its institutions through interaction of the different forms of associated life is in so far democratic. Such a society must have a type of education which gives individuals a personal interest in social relationships and control, and the habits of mind which secure social changes without introducing disorder.
Men have gone on to build up vast intellectual schemes, philosophies, and theologies, to prove that ideals are not real as ideals but as antecedently existing actualities. They have failed to see that in converting moral realities into matters of intellectual assent they have evinced lack of moral faith.
All direction is but re-direction; it shifts the activities already going on into another channel. Unless one is cognizant of the energies which are already in operation, one's attempts at direction will almost surely go amiss.
By doing his share in the associated activity, the individual appropriates the purpose which actuates it, becomes familiar with its methods and subject matters, acquires needed skill, and is saturated with its emotional spirit.
The most important factor in the training of good mental habits consists in acquiring the attitude of suspended conclusion, and in mastering the various methods of searching for new materials to corroborate or to refute the first suggestions that occur.
Not only does social life demand teaching and learning for its own permanence, but the very process of living together educates. It enlarges and enlightens experience; it stimulates and enriches imagination; it creates responsibility for accuracy and vividness of statement and thought.
We have three approaches at our disposal: the observation of nature, reflection, and experimentation. Observation serves to assemble the data, reflection to synthesise them and experimentation to test the results of the synthesis. The observation of nature must be assiduous, just as reflection must be profound, and experimentation accurate. These three approaches are rarely found together, which explains why creative geniuses are so rare.
Choice is the declaration by self that a certain ideal of self shall be realized.
What the best and wisest parent wants for his own child, that must the community want for all of its children.
Personality must be educated, and personality cannot be educated by confining its operations to technical and specialized things, or to the less important relationships of life. Full education comes only when there is a responsible share on the part of each person, in proportion to capacity, in shaping the aims and policies of the social groups to which he belongs.
Good manners come, as we say, from good breeding or rather are good breeding;
and breeding is acquired by habitual action, in response to habitual stimuli, not by conveying information.
In general it may be said that the things which we take for granted without inquiry or reflection are just the things which determine our conscious thinking and decide our conclusions. And these habitudes which lie below the level of reflection are just those which have been formed in the constant give and take of relationship with others.
There is more than a verbal tie between the words common, community, and communication. Try the experiment of communicating, with fullness and accuracy, some experience to another, especially if it be somewhat complicated, and you will find your own attitude toward your experience changing.
All learning begins when our comfortable ideas turn out to be inadequate.
Forty years spent in wandering in a wilderness like that of the present is not a sad fate - unless one attempts to make himself believe that the wilderness is after all itself the promised land.
If the eye is constantly greeted by harmonious objects, having elegance of form and color, a standard of taste naturally grows up.
Schools are, indeed, one important method of the transmission which forms the dispositions of the immature; but it is only one means, and, compared with other agencies, a relatively superficial means. Only as we have grasped the necessity of more fundamental and persistent modes of tuition can we make sure of placing the scholastic methods in their true context.
Give the pupils something to do, not something to learn;
and the doing is of such a nature as to demand thinking; learning naturally results.
The only way to abolish war is to make peace seem heroic.
The conception of education as a social process and function has no definite meaning until we define the kind of society we have in mind.
When "reality" is sought for at large, it is without intellectual import;
at most the term carries the connotation of an agreeableemotional state.
It has been petrified into a slavery of thought and sentiment, as intolerant superiority on the part of the few and an intolerable burden on the part of the many.
Every subject at some phase of its development should possess, what is for the individual concerned with it, an aesthetic quality.
The activity of the immature human being is simply played upon to secure habits which are useful. He is trained like an animal rather than educated like a human being. His instincts remain attached to their original objects of pain or pleasure. But to get happiness or to avoid the pain of failure he has to act in a way agreeable to others.
When others are not doing what we would like them to or are threatening disobedience, we are most conscious of the need of controlling them and of the influences by which they are controlled.
The reactionaries are in possession of force, in not only the army and police, but in the press and the schools
Thought is impossible without words.
Were all instructors to realize that the quality of mental process, not the production of correct answers, is the measure of educative growth something hardly less than a revolution in teaching would be worked.