doing philosophy in the classroom as community activity: a cultural-historical approach


  • marina santi Università degli Studi di Padova


Lipman, Activity Model, Philosophizing


One of the most traditional ways to teach philosophy in secondary school is a historical approach”, which takes a historicist view of philosophy and uses teaching practice based on teacher-centred lessons and textbook study by students. Only recently a debate on different approaches to teach philosophy is developing, considering the discipline as practical and dialogical activity to be fostered in the classroom. What could mean “doing philosophy” in the classroom from an instructional perspective? What are the premises and constraints which allow the transformation of philosophy from a discipline to a community activity? In this paper a teaching model based on cultural-historical theory is proposed and discussed. The model is composed by three level of specification of the activity, from lower to higher, which correspond to three different analysis plans of the philosophical practice in an instructional context. Each level is composed by seven fundamental dimensions which highlight the meanings, the constraints, and the tools implied and developed in philosophizing as socio-cultural activity. Finally, if and how Philosophy for Children should be considered an activity respondent to the model and its educational aims is discussed.




How to Cite

santi, marina. (2015). doing philosophy in the classroom as community activity: a cultural-historical approach. Childhood & Philosophy, 10(20), 283–304. Retrieved from