Discipline, reflects the philosophy of life, accepted at a particular time. It is mainly governed by the aim of education.
In ancient India when salvation was the chief aim of education, stress was laid on a strict type of discipline. The student was required to lead a life of austerity and self-denial.
In medieval ages when despotic system of government was established, a very harsh and strict discipline was advocated and practiced.
“Spare the rod and spoil the child” was the maxim for the guidance of teachers. In the present age of democracy, however, the concept of discipline is totally different.
Whereas in the past, perfect order and silence prevailed in the educational institutions, now we insist on self-government of students and free discipline.
Different schools of philosophy also differ in their concept of discipline. While the idealists are in favor of punishment for maintaining order in the class, the naturalists advocate perfect freedom to the child.
They believe in discipline by natural consequences. The pragmatists, on the other hand, emphasize social discipline, which is maintained by the proper direction of the pupil’s natural impulses through cooperative activities.
Philosophy and Teacher
Teacher is the back-bone of the entire process of education. It is, therefore, essential that the teacher’s philosophy of life should be in perfect consonance with the philosophy on which the educational system is based.
To be a successful teacher, he must know his subject, his pupil, the society and the philosophy of education. A teacher in a Basic school, who has no faith in and no regard for the Gandhian way of life, will never prove to be a successful teacher.
The naturalists insist that the teacher should never interfere with the free activities of children. He is simply to set the educational environment and that is all he is expected to do. Then his role is a negative one.
The idealists advocate that the teacher’s role should be that of the head of a family. Pupils should be inspired by his personality and develop full faith in him. According to pragmatists, the teacher is not to impose anything on the pupil. He is simply to provide opportunity to his pupils for activity and learning.