Caroline Pratt and the City and Country School

  • Mary E. Hauser


With this simple, direct statement, Caroline Pratt introduced her autobiography, I Learn from Children.1 However, the simplicity of the written statement masks the breadth and depth of her experience as a progressive educator and a radical social thinker. It is the purpose of this chapter to examine Caroline Pratt’s life work to understand the nature of this woman, who contributed so much to educational thought and practice. Her approach to progressive education has survived, with few changes, for almost a century at the school she founded in Greenwich Village, New York, the City and Country School. What kind of a woman was able to craft a philosophy that has provided such a solid foundation for children to learn? How was her personal and professional experience shaped by the radical-thinking, activist women who were part of her professional and social circles? What was the administrative style of this woman whose school was so much an extension of herself? How did the political and social climate of the times influence her views?


Manual Training Progressive Education Progressive Movement Radical Feminist Play School 


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  2. 2.
    See Robert Beck, “American Progressive Education 1875–1930” (Ph.D. diss., Yale University, 1942/1965), idem “Progressive Education and American Progressivism: Caroline Pratt.” Teachers College Record 60, no. 3, (1958): 129–137;Google Scholar
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Copyright information

© Alan R. Sadovnik, Susan F. Semel 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mary E. Hauser

There are no affiliations available

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