|…philosophy involves converting the classroom into a community of cooperative inquiry, where all are democratically entitled to be heard, where each learns from the other, and where the spoken dialogue among the members of the class, when internalized and rendered an inner forum in the mind of each participant, is the basis of the process known as thinking. Matthew Lipman, Philosophy Goes to School|
Our approach to teaching philosophy in schools encourages the development of an inquiring classroom community. Such a learning community encourages the development of:
- an inquiring outlook
- the ability to articulate problems and issues
- imaginative and adventurous thinking
- the habit of exploring alternative possibilities and different points of view
- the capacity to critically examine issues and ideas
- good reasoning and independent judgment
Through emphasis on the classroom as a community, it also helps to develop good social habits and dispositions such as:
- actively listening to others
- exploring disagreements reasonably
- being generally cooperative and constructive
- being socially communicative and inclusive
- taking other people’s feelings and concerns into account.
Philosophy for Children was established by Matthew Lipman in 1972 when he left Columbia University to establish the Institute for the Advancement of Philosophy for Children at MontClair State College in the United States. It has a growing international presence, with centres in Latin America, Western and Eastern Europe, North America, North Asia (including China) and South East Asia, Africa and Australasia.