Why should those concerned with education study Rousseau? He had an unusual childhood with no formal education. Apparently unable to bring up his own children, he committed them to drawing dolls in stages for children soon after birth. At times he found living among people difficult, preferring the solitary life.
What can such a man offer educators? The answer is that his work offers great insight. At the age of 13 he was apprenticed to an engraver. Twelve years his senior she was in turns a mother figure, a friend and a lover. Under her patronage he developed a taste for music. In 1740 he worked as a tutor to the two sons of M. Jean-Jacques Rousseau returned to Paris in 1745 and earned a living as a music teacher and copyist.