Kilpatrick : The Project Method

William Kilpatrick (1871 – 1965)

Kilpatrick an American pedagogue, is considered the mentor of the project methodology, through the proposal of developing works integrated with Projects. Dewey’s disciple in Columbia pursues and develops his work in the field of democratic education, marking the second half of the twentieth century through the proposed work integrated with Projects;

Its philosophy of education is based on the Project Method for Early Childhood Education, seen as a progressive pedagogy, which organizes classroom curriculum activities around a central theme or pedagogical objective.

In the project method the teacher is a “mediator” as opposed to the authoritarian figure of the traditional teacher. The project method seeks to ensure that each child creates their autonomy and develops their learning pathways through the experience of the various natural senses and the exploration of the world around them. The design method rejects memorization work and formatted educational spaces (especially with the arrangement of tables in ordered rows).

Kilpatrick developed his method through 4 project groups:

• the construction (how to write a part)
• the fun (like trying a concert),
• problematization (eg discussing a complex social problem such as poverty)
• learning specific skills (which requires personal commitment, whether in sports, music, or any other activity)