Research suggests that it is important that children and young people be given the opportunity to discuss and critically examine these issues in safe contexts with trusted facilitators and teachers, in order to foster critical thinking skills and the capacity for ethical imagination and to prioritise questions and concerns generated by the students themselves (Atran, 2015, Davies, 2008).
The training event will make use of the following methodological approaches:
- Philosophical Enquiry: Communities of philosophical enquiry with children and young people have been shown to be a powerful force in developing caring, collaborative, creative and critical thinking. They foreground children’s voice and ideas and build children’s capacity to generate and drive enquiry by mobilising a range of tasks, frameworks and exercises. This workshop will build on good practice from the field of philosophy with children, creating a community of philosophical enquiry amongst participants in order to experience and explore the methodology.
- Lived Values Methodologies: One of the pedagogical challenges in pluralistic societies is to foster liberal democratic values in the classroom whilst at the same time acknowledging students’ different religious beliefs, lives and experiences. This approach explores concepts like freedom, equality, generosity, tolerance, integrity, and responsibility in the context of ethical formation and offers a deeper understanding of democracy, religions and beliefs. The methodology involves case based pedagogical elaborations on ethics and values. The task is to make possible both the integration of the fostering task of education with that of teaching, turning liberal democratic values into objects of study.
- Arts-Based Methodologies: Conversation and discussion are important tools for enquiry within classrooms but thinking through both engaging with art, through making, and through mapping offer important methodologies for exploring the world, deepening understanding and extending the imagination. This approach builds on a project called ‘Art and Philosophy in the Classroom’ in order to explore questions through art and philosophy. Participants will learn about the possibilities of contemporary art practice for opening up questions and also for expressing ideas. This supports the inclusion of all children in the classroom, and provides a framework for expression of difficult ideas and experiences.