By Thomas E. Wartenberg
Written in a transparent and available type, this publication explains why it is very important let youngsters entry to philosophy in the course of primary-school educations.For additional info, stopover at www.teachingchildrenphilosophy.org
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Additional info for Big Ideas for Little Kids: Teaching Philosophy through Children's Literature
The Basic Fields of Philosophy Philosophical Field Basic Question Metaphysics Epistemology Philosophy of language Philosophy of mind Ethics Social and political philosophy Aesthetics What really exists? What can we know? How does language refer to reality? Is the mind distinct from the body? How should we act? How should society by organized? What is art? INTRODUCTION TO PHILOSOPHY COURSE 39 the bodies that we see surrounding us that behave much as we do, there are minds like our own? A field of philosophy that came into existence only in the twentieth century is the philosophy of language.
That’s what we have to teach them how to do. Because “all” that the teacher has to do is to assist the children in their philosophical discussion, it doesn’t require any special philosophical knowledge to teach elementary-school philosophy. All you need to know is how to facilitate a philosophical discussion among your students. It’s important to realize that there is a model of what teaching involves that makes it difficult to see how an elementary-school teacher could possibly teach her students philosophy, what I call the teachercentered model of learning.
In order to make sure that everyone is able to follow what we’re doing, we have learned to begin our discussion of the book with a chart. We use those large pads that populate elementary-school classrooms, so that all of the children can help us fill in the chart. The chart generally begins by displaying the central elements of the story that we will be discussing, but it moves on from there, as we ask the children to fill in information, as a first, gentle step in our philosophical discussion.