Plato and Aristotle: Thoughts About Education

Education is an important part of life and many philosophers had ideas about the best education. Plato is one philosopher who thought that early education is important and people must work for the benefit of the country. Aristotle, Plato’s student, had a more personal view on education and what role it plays in a person’s life. The common idea is that early education, in many topics and subjects, is very important for everyone. But there must be a balance between the education that a person themselves wants and the education that the country needs.

Plato’s thoughts about education focused on the search for talented people and then giving them the best education. Then, these people will be running the country because they are better skilled and educated. The state or government will be responsible for giving education to the children and so, the people will get the learning and training that the government and society must have for a well-balanced population. Arts, music and moral development were key points in Plato’s understanding of the learning process (Lodge 21). It is true that early education is important but children should be educated by parents and teachers because it is more personal. Children and parents will have freedom to choose what they want to do or be in life. When people will have their own individual rights to do what they want to do, they will become professional in that skill and in result, benefit the society because workers will be doing their favorite thing and not something that someone made them do.

Aristotle was also a great philosopher and there are some traces in his thinking of his teacher—Plato. Aristotle thought that good education must start early and have many subjects. A person must learn things by doing and repeating actions many times. Aristotle also thought that everyone must have theoretical and practical knowledge (Kristjansson 35). Aristotle has taken Plato’s thinking further and has shown that personal development is as important, as social. Every individual must have a chance to reach for their own dreams and goals. Arts must be studied because it helps a person think creatively and in an original way. Both Aristotle and Plato believed that people must be well educated for the state and benefit of society. Aristotle’s strategy in education is more structured and repetitive and it is a good thing because it makes a person used to the order. But human nature is a big part of learning process and a person must trust his or her own feelings and thoughts.

Both Plato and Aristotle agree that a person must know many different subjects and have physical and moral development. In modern times, education and learning have changed because of media, internet and social networks. In Plato and Aristotle time, the primary teachers were in schools and higher institutions. Parents were the earliest educators. And today’s society views education differently. People are free to choose their profession without government’s requirements. Every person must receive best possible education. It should start in the early age and be carefully guided by professionals. The more information and understanding a person has, the better they can understand life and how to act in different situations. People must not forget about the greater good and the society. A well-educated community will lead to more people getting education and higher quality life.

Works Cited

Kristjansson, Kristjan. Aristotle, Emotions, and Education, Burlington, United States: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2007. Print.

Lodge, Rupert. Plato’s Theory of Education, London, Great Britain: Routledge, 2000. Print.