Historical story

The teacher over time

By Rainer Sousa

The role of teaching predates the process of creating the first educational institutions in history. Even before writing was developed, orality, together with other communication processes, had the important function of passing on what was considered important. Instigated by simple imitation or oral report, man managed to produce and spread the most varied ways of relating to the world around him.

The need to put specific people to teach certain skills already happened in Ancient Egypt, when the function of scribe was preserved by the constitution of royal schools that prepared the individual to master this technique. In the West, educational institutions varied greatly according to the values ​​that prevailed in a certain culture.

Among the Spartans, education began at the age of seven and was concerned with improving one's physical abilities. The hard routine of physical training was maintained in order to make the men ready for war and the women fit to bear healthy children. In addition, each child was supported by a tutor who performed the role as a bond of friendship and without gaining anything in return.

In Athens, the service was done for a fee and each type of knowledge was delegated to a type of tutor or teacher. Concerned with the balance between body and mind, Athenian education had three basic types of teaching professionals:the paidotribes, who took care of intellectual development; the grammatistés, responsible for the transfer of writing and reading; and the Kitharistés, who took care of physical enhancement.

In Ancient Rome, the role of educating was played by the rhetoricians, who – like the Greek sophists – circulated through the cities teaching what they knew in exchange for some financial compensation. In addition, we can mention the presence of the lud magister, who played the role of teaching children who did not have a wealthier material condition.

In the medieval period, the world of knowledge came to have a clear control of Christian religious institutions. Initially, the knowledge present there was only restricted to the Church's own members and aspirants. In the Late Middle Ages, this situation changed with the establishment of the first universities. Until the 19th century, no course was designed to train teachers.

In Brazil, the clerical rule over educational institutions ended after the Marquis of Pombal expelled the Jesuits from the colony. After this measure, the Crown itself designated who could exercise pedagogical functions. The professionalization of the Brazilian educator began to be designed in 1835, when the first school for educators was created in the city of Niterói, in Rio de Janeiro. Even today, the qualification of professionals in the area of ​​education raises the concern of our authorities.