Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Teaching High School Philosophy

Two arguments for philosophy in high schools, and one article describing classrooms already engaged.

The better question would ask why not? Philosophy is routinely taught in Europe as a standard feature of the secondary school curriculum. Rigorous summer institutes, such as Johns Hopkins’ Center for Talented Youth and Northwestern University’s Center for Talent Development, have long enjoyed great success in exciting students about the discipline. In recent years, a growing number of high schools, public as well as private, have developed highly successful philosophy electives, as well as philosophy clubs and ethics bowl teams.
Teaching High School Philosophy

What should be surprising is not that a case should be made for philosophy in American
public education, but that philosophy has not become an integral part of its curriculum
already. The habits of mind instilled by philosophy constitute the essence of a liberal
education. Its ideals of freedom of thought and expression are at the heart of our political
traditions. It sources are wellsprings of Western culture. Its lesson is that truth never need
fear for itself.
A Case for Philosophy in the American High School Curriculum

The Pre-College Philosophy Committee of the American Philosophical Association (APA) is trying to address this issue by developing a new national organization, PLATO (Philosophy Learning and Teaching Organization), that will provide resource-sharing and support to K-12 philosophy teachers around the country.
Philosophy for Children

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