Evidence suggests that engaging in philosophical discussion enhances children's reasoning and critical skills. This course introduces strategies for encouraging elementary school children to think about their world in a serious and careful way, using stories, children's literature and children's everyday experiences, as well as materials developed at the Institute for the Advancement of Philosophy for Children. The course is designed for teachers wishing to integrate philosophical questions into their classes and parents who wish to play a more active role in the cognitive development of their children. Education students are encouraged to consider this training.
- Explore, through an investigation of writings in philosophy, education, and the humanities, the concepts of reasoning and learning.
- Understand the variation in understandings of these concepts as emerging in different historical and social contexts.
- Investigate the moral and social consequences of accepting these various understandings.
- Develop a beginning understanding of critical analysis of work in philosophy.
- Use these understandings as background against which to develop and assess strategies for encouraging elementary school children to think about the world in a serious and careful way, using stories, children's everyday experiences, and materials developed at the Institute for the Advancement of Philosophy for Children.
- Demonstrate awareness of the scope and variety of works in the arts and humanities.
- Understand those works as expressions of individual and human values within a historical and social context.
- Respond critically to works in the arts and humanities.
- Engage in the creative process or interpretive performance.
- Articulate an informed personal reaction to works in the arts and humanities.