Introduction. All the methodologies developed by the Progressive Education movement followed a comparable process of reception and appropriation in Spain. This process began with visits abroad by “pedagogical explorers”, sponsored for the most part by the Junta para Ampliación de Estudios (Board for Advanced Studies) and concluded with the practical experiences performed by the Spanish schoolteachers in their schools. This paper explores how the Dalton Plan perfectly matches the model constructed for explaining other innovative methodologies, but also tries to understand the reasons of its little success amongst the teachers. Methodology. All the steps of the historical method have been followed: research and review of manuscript, bibliographical, hemerographical and iconographical sources, comparison between countries and critical analysis of the documentation that was used. Results. In this article we begin by showing the considerable impact that the Dalton Plan had countries such as Great Britain, that were in search of a good alternative for the homogeneous grouping of students, the so-called “class system”. This enthousiastic climate in those countries was experienced by several Spanish pedagogues that nevertheless could not understand it. We also analyse the translation to Spanish of several books and articles about the Dalton Plan, and how many of these translations transformed the meaning of the original works. The oeuvres of some Spanish pedagogues divulgated falses clichés about its possibilities of application in the Spanish schools. The direct consequence was that the Dalton Plan was far less known in Spain than other innovations of the Progressive Education movement, although we discuss some of the experiences done and never documented till now. Conclusions. The article attempts to explain the failure of the Dalton Plan within the Spanish pedagogical context, which still still favoured the class system; and, within the ideological context of the Second Republic, sympathized with more socialized methods, such as the Project Method.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Dalton Plan, Individualized teaching, Progressive Education, Spain, Theories of Reception
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.4438/1988-592X-RE-2017-377-355, hdl.handle.net/1765/108435
Journal Revista de Educacion
Citation
Del Pozo Andrés, M.M. (María del Mar), & Braster, J.F.A. (2017). The Dalton plan in Spain: Reception and appropriation (1920-1939) El Plan Dalton en España: Recepción y apropiación (1920-1939). Revista de Educacion, 2017(377), 113–134. doi:10.4438/1988-592X-RE-2017-377-355