Monthly Archives: October 2013

Cover art, Philosophy Park

Philosophy Park: A beginner’s guide to great philosophers and their ideas

Philip Cam (ACER Press 2013)

Philosophy Park introduces readers in the upper primary years to influential ideas of some of the world’s most famous philosophers—both ancient and modern—through conversations between a cast of colourful characters. Children first learn about each philosopher, and then read a story that unpacks a key philosophical debate, before reflecting, analysing and discussing the ideas in class.

Some of questions explored in Philosophy Park:
• What is it for something to be good?
• Is happiness the most important thing in life?
• How do we know what is real?
• Where do ideas come from?
• How can you be sure that you exist?

To assist in this process, an accompanying Teacher Resource provides carefully constructed topic questions, activities and exercises that are designed to extend student thinking and guide classroom discussion and debate. Working in this way will help children to develop the art of Critical and Creative Thinking — a core requirement and ‘general capability’ in the Australian Curriculum.

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Cover art, Philosophical and Ethical Inquiry for Students in the Middle Years and Beyond

Philosophical and Ethical Inquiry for the Middle Years and Beyond

Sarah Davey Chesters, Liz Fynes-Clinton, Lynne Hinton, Rosie Scholl (ACSA, 2013)

This book seeks to broaden teachers’ understanding of stimuli for philosophical inquiry, and suggests a variety of easily accessible stimulus materials appropriate across disciplines. Students and teachers are able to unleash their ability to question, to satisfy their thirst for meaning and understanding, to explore possibilities with others and to test their own thinking within a supportive community. Engaging in philosophy sessions enables teachers and students to explore the curriculum and life beyond the schoolyard in depth, through learning to think in a critical, creative and caring way. This form of learning will assist them to understand and make sense of their lives.

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The Socratic Classroom: Reflective Thinking Through Collaborative Inquiry

The Socratic Classroom: Reflective Thinking through Collaborative Inquiry

Sarah Davey Chesters (Sense Publishers, 2012)

This book provides a framework for a collaborative inquiry-based approach to teaching and learning suitable not only for formal educational settings such as the school classroom but for all educational settings. For teachers, educationalists, philosophers and philosophers of education, The Socratic Classroom presents a theoretical as well as practical exploration of how philosophy may be adopted in education. The Socratic Classroom captures a variety of philosophical approaches to classroom practice that could be broadly described as Socratic in form. There is an exploration of three distinct approaches that make significant contributions to classroom practice: Matthew Lipman’s Community of Inquiry, Leonard Nelson’s Socratic Dialogue, and David Bohm’s Dialogue. All three models influence what is termed in this book as ‘Socratic pedagogy’. Socratic pedagogy is multi-dimensional and is underpinned by ‘generative, evaluative, and connective thinking’. These terms describe the dispositions inherent in thinking through philosophical inquiry. This book highlights how philosophy as inquiry can contribute to educational theory and practice, while also demonstrating how it can be an effective way to approach teaching and learning. Audience This publication is suited to educators, teacher educators, philosophers of education and philosophers in general. It has a theoretical and practical focus, making it truly interdisciplinary.

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