Origin of the work:
Worked up from Comenius’ effects after 1670
1896 Prague, Klasobraní didaktické, Czech translation by J. V. Novák
1902 Prague, J. Kvačala, Korrespondence J. A. Komenského II, pp303-328
This is a summary of Comenius’ thoughts on the fundamentals of didactics, compiled by Kristián Vladislav Nigrin from Comenius’ effects after the latter’s death. The work is divided into two parts. Under the title ‘Mathetika’ (i.e. the art of learning), the first begins by setting out Comenius’ metaphysical thoughts. It sets out a definition of cognition and the stages thereof. The aim is achieve cognition clearly, quickly and pleasantly through the media of the senses, reason and faith. Cognition may be achieved methodically, by means of analytical, synthetic and syncretic methods. There should be transition from the known to the unknown such that there is a movement from the senses to an understood thing, from the whole to its parts, from the commonplace to the peculiar, and from the simple to the complex. Since to know means to be familiar with something, to understand it and its uses, it follows that the most certain knowledge can be obtained on the basis of examples, rules and practical undertakings (exercises).
While the first section deals with the perceptive activity of the student, where the student accepts understanding, the second part, on didactics, concerns the work of the teacher in imparting knowledge. It sets out definitions of didactics and of education. The aim of education is to inculcate students with all the knowledge of the teacher, clearly, quickly and pleasantly with the use of examples, rules and analogies (practice) as the media.
For further study, see also:
J. V. Novák & J. Hendrich, Jan Amos Komenský, jeho život a spisy. Prague 1932, pp670-671
Jan Kumpera, Jan Amos Komenský, poutník na rozhraní věků. Prague & Ostrava 1992, pp299-300