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Developmental Appropriate Practices

Unique to Adventism is the belief that all academic subjects can and should be taught from a Biblical perspective (White, 1903/1952, Ed., p. 123, ¶2), using the natural world to exemplify the lessons taught (White, 1903/1952, Ed., p. 11, ¶2). This education is to begin when the child is still in infancy and continue through maturity (White, 1954/2002, CG, p. 26, ¶3 & 4 & p. 193, ¶3). The young child can learn about the plan of salvation and what it means to be injured, healed and restored as demonstrated throughout all nature (White, 1903/1952, Ed., p. 113, ¶1). Abstract concepts such as faith, death and wisdom as well as service and love can be made tangible when working in nature and the young will grow in their knowledge of truth and grace (White, 1903/1952, Ed., pp. 102-112; p. 106 ¶3; p. 107, ¶2). Principles of science and health, business and recreation, history, music and prose are all found within the pages of Holy Script, hymns, Psalms and spiritual songs (White, 1903/1952, Ed., p. 123, ¶2; Colossians 3:16).

“True education is not the forcing of instruction on an unready and unreceptive mind” (White, 1903/2002, Ed., p. 41, ¶2). When teaching young children, White recommended the use of methods such as:

  • Attention to individual development and personal interests (White, 1903/2002, Ed., p. 232, ¶2)
  • Memory work and independent thought (White, 1954/2002, CG, p. 511, ¶4; White, 1903/2002, Ed., p. 230, ¶2)
  • Physical, practical work and hands-on activities (White, 1903/2002, Ed., p. 220, ¶2 & pp. 207-209 & 212-213)
  • Thorough, multi-disciplinary, well-rounded training (White, 1903/2002, Ed. p. 232, ¶4)
  • Hymns and Scripture songs (White, 1954/2002, CG, pp. 523-524)
  • Bible and mission stories (White, 1954/2002, CG, pp. 514-515)
  • Prayer and reflection (White, 1954/2002, CG, p. 254)
  • Nature object lessons (White, 1954/2002, CG, pp. 46-59 & pp.534-536; White, 1954/2002, CG, p. 515, ¶1)
  • Simplicity and effectiveness (White, 1903/2002, Ed., p. 107, ¶2 and p. 233, ¶1)
  • Illustration (White, 1954/2002, CG, p. 514, ¶3; White, 1903/2002, Ed., p. 233, ¶1)
  • Enthusiasm and dignity (White, 1903/2002, Ed., p. 233, ¶2 & 279, ¶1)
  • Well-planned lessons with a distinct goal (White, 1903/2002, Ed., p. 233, ¶4)
  • Mastery learning (White, 1903/2002, Ed., p. 234, ¶1)
  • Parental involvement (White, 1903/2002, Ed., pp. 283-286).


References

Holy Bible, The. King James Version

White, E. G. (1954/2002). Child Guidance [CG]. Hagerstown, MD: Review and Herald Publishing Association. ISBN: 0-8280-1168-0.

White, E. G. (1903/2002). Education [Ed]. Mountain View, CA: Pacific Press Publishing Association.