Eliza R. Snow's contributions as an educator have gone largely unexamined yet are an important element of her lifework. An analysis of her writing, both poetic and instructional, as well as minutes and notes from her instructional meetings, supports the view that as an educator Eliza R. Snow had a definite philosophy that informed her educational practice and shaped teaching and learning in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Two articles, one on the educational philosophy of Eliza R. Snow and the other on her pedagogical practices, illuminate her contributions as an educational leader. Snow believed that God's children were eternal and divinely endowed with the capacity to learn; that they were agents, free to choose; that to achieve eternal life their minds must be expanded and refined, transformed and perfected; and that capacity, greatness and usefulness were developed through improving oneself and through serving others. Snow's pedagogical practices derived from her philosophy and bridged nineteenth-century didacticism with an advocacy for learners as agents. In a time when most learning consisted of rote memorization and drill, Snow granted her students ownership in their own learning processes and used techniques that inspired children with eternal perspective. Snow's pedagogical patterns included moralizing to underscore important points, encouraging application or present-day connection, describing events or concepts unfamiliar to her audience, and editorializing with personal insights or experiences.



College and Department

David O. McKay School of Education; Instructional Psychology and Technology



Date Submitted


Document Type





Eliza R. Snow, educational philosophy, pedagogy