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4 DOUBLE TAP TO ZOOM WITH PHONE OR TABLET | Giants in the Nursery Second, each has made a unique contribution to our conception of the child and to our understanding of experiential learning. To be sure, all learning is experien- tial in a broad sense. Yet, since the time of Francis Bacon (1561–1626), it has been tradition to distinguish book learning and deductive reasoning from experiential learning based on sensory observation, experiment, and inductive reasoning. Finally, they are all Giants inasmuch as they have all found a prominent and lasting place in the theory and practice of early childhood education. Coming from different backgrounds and living in different times and places, each Giant concep- tualized the child and experiential learning from his or her unique orientation. Each successive conception has added to our knowledge of the complexity and variety of child nature and of the ways in which young children learn. Thanks to these ideas, we have a more comprehensive picture of the young learner than stu- dents at any other age level. Ten individuals meet the criteria outlined above. John Amos Comenius, John Locke, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau contributed the philosophical foundations of experiential learning and modern education in general. Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi, Friedrich Froebel, Maria Montessori, and Rudolf Steiner carried out the experimental groundwork of early childhood education. Most recently, early child- hood education was scientifically rooted in the research and theory of Sigmund Freud, Jean Piaget, and Erik Erikson. I have also added a chapter on the Russian Lev Vygotsky, even though he was not a Giant in the sense described above. This seemed appropriate both because of his influence and because he might well have been a Giant had he lived long enough to fully articulate his theories and complete his research program. The Aims of This Book My aims in this book are threefold. First, as described above, one core problem in early childhood education is that most, if not all, historians of early education give accounts of the diversity and controversy in the field at the expense of a comprehensive picture of the discipline as a whole. From the perspective of DAP, however, early childhood education does have a historical and a conceptual con- tinuity and unity. All the Giants contributed significant ideas about the nature of the child and about learning and instruction that have been progressively assimi- lated into the principles of DAP. In detailing the lives and works of these Giants, I COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL