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Lyceum & Chautauqua Movements in Adult Education Introduction to Adult Education Dr Crosby.

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Lyceum & Chautauqua Movements in Adult Education Introduction to Adult Education Dr Crosby

Lyceum & Chautauqua Movements in Adult EducationIntroduction to Adult EducationDr Crosby

Lyceum Beginnings

335 BC – Aristotle in Athens

1800 - Scotland and Europe

Workforce education

A means to spread education to the masses

Topics: mechanics, chemistry, astronomy, electricity, French, etc.

Singers, dancers, circus performers

America: Social Context

1700s Cotton Mather’s discussion groups; Benjamin Franklin’s Junto groups

1820s: Missouri Compromise; Maine 23rd State; Antarctica discovered; Spain sells part of Florida to US; Key people in the Civil War were being born

Urbanization; Industrialization; Reform movements

Cities tripled and quadrupled in size

Working situations poor

Lyceums come to America

Mid to late 1820s Josiah Holbrook, Connecticut

Article: “Associations of adults for the purpose of mutual education”

No adult education in US outside of colleges & universities

Gathering of 40 people in Milbury, CT (1826)


“A Town Lyceum is a voluntary association of individuals disposed to improve each other in useful knowledge, and to advance the interests of their schools. To gain the first object, they hold weekly or other stated meetings, for reading, conversation, discussion, illustrating the sciences, or other exercises designed for their mutual benefit; and, as it is found convenient, they collect a cabinet, consisting of apparatus for illustrating the sciences, books, minerals, plants, or other natural or artificial productions.” (McNamara, para. 4)

Educate the community members of a broad variety of topics

Lyceum Growth

1826 one group

1828 (estimated) 100 Lyceum groups

Mid-1830s – over 3,000 Lyceums in US

January 27, 1837: Abraham Lincoln at age 28 gave address to a lyceum in Springfield, Mass. http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Life_and_Works_of_Abraham_Lincoln/Volume_3/The_Perpetuation_of_Our_Political_Institutions

Lyceum Purpose

Improvement of conversation

Directing amusements for children

Calling into use neglected libraries

Increasing the advantages, and raising he character of, district schools



Abolition of Slavery

Civil Disobedience (title of a lecture)

Physical Education





Impact of Lyceums

“it was the Lyceum which took its start then, that aroused the minds of our grandfathers, afforded them greater opportunities for study, and made their lives broader and better able to understand and appreciate the gifts of God and men” (Mathews, 1896, last paragraph).

One of the first to embrace relevant curriculum (“knowledge that was useful but not necessarily vocational” Natoli, 2010, p. 6) and workforce education

Resulted in a higher educated populace, which in turn lead to a higher demand for teachers.

Adult Education

“An effort was made to keep the audience from being mere sponges, to absorb all that they could; and in order to draw out the information received, a prize of ten dollars was offered to the one who should make best summaries of the lectures given during one winter” (Mathews, 1896, para. 20).

Set a foundation for the value of adult education; promoted the establishment of libraries, museums, and public schools.

The Ending

Civil War in 1860 caused the movement to cease.

But not the END….Only the beginning of something to come!!

NE Georgia 2014

NE Georgia 2015

Flashback! What is Chautauqua?

Chautauqua Movement

1874 – Methodist minister, John Heyl Vincent & Businessman, Lewis Miller

Training for Methodist Sunday School Teachers

A successor to the Lyceum Movement

Pillars: Religion


Cultural Arts



“They believed that if democracy was to succeed you had to have an educated electorate and they believed that the churches has some responsibility for that” www.pbs.org/wned/chautauqua-american-narrative/founding-history.php

People discovering that lifelong learning is one of the keys to living a happy, fulfilling life

Chautauqua Today

Summer Programs: http://ciweb.org/lecture-themes-2015#what-to-do (1 minute)

2014 & 2015 TopicsFeeding a Hungry Planet

The Ethics of Privacy

Emerging Citizenship: The Egyptian Experience

Brazil: Rising Superpower



Redefining Europe

Middle East Now and Next


Adult Education Theme

“Self-improvement through lifelong learning was at the heart of the impulse that motivated Americans and founded Chautauqua in 1874” (Chautauqua Institute. (2013). para. 1. Retrieved from http://www.ciweb.org/education)

Philosophies Represented:Humanistic


Some ResourcesElias, J. & Merriam, S. (1995). Philosophical foundations of adult education (2nd Ed.). Malabar, FL: Krieger Publishing.

 Mathews, G. E. (1896). The history of the Lyceum Movement in Brookline. Retrieved from http://www.brooklinehistoricalsociety.org/history/publications/seriesOne/lyceum/lyceum.html 

McNamara, R. (2014). The American Lyceum Movement. Retrieved http://history1800s.about.com/od/1800sglossary/g/American-Lyceum-Movement.htm

Natoli, B. (2010). The American Lyceum Movement: A Brief Overview. Retrieved from http://bnatoli.weebly.com/uploads/7/1/3/2/7132794/lyceummovementoverview.pdf

Websites (in addition to those already in ppt)http://www.lakesideohio.com/about/chautauqua-movement