uncovering the efficacy of philosophical inquiry with children

parmis aslanimehr


This paper offers a critical exploration of the Philosophy for Children (P4C) movement, which aims at the expansion of critical, creative and caring thinking skills in students through philosophical dialogue. It describe that such a practice can motivate children to take responsibility in recognizing their thinking and their actions which shape who one is becoming. The paper outlines the historical development of this dialogical framework followed by concentrating on some of the challenges and solutions with respect to the practice of philosophy with children. Some of the dominating concerns raised by the critics of philosophical practice are addressed, before surveying the evidence to the effectiveness of such an approach using philosophical, sociological and psychological arguments. The paper offers a systematic critical review of studies that have implemented philosophical inquiry with children in different educational settings to find that its practice enables children to participate in an open community through reason. The concluding argument states implications for philosophical practice in the fields of implementation in education and future directions in research. The paper makes a final claim that engaged philosophical inquiry is a crucial and necessary means for the emergence and further social and emotional advancement in pupils where children can attain a stable sense of personal well-being.


Philosophy for Children; Philosophical Inquiry; Community of Inquiry; P4C; criticism; Effects

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e-issn 1984-5987 | p-issn 2525-5061