the richness of questions in philosophy for children

magda costa-carvalho, dina mendonça


This paper argues that the various approaches within P4C (Philosophy for Children) should purposefully integrate the exploration of questioning instead of only presenting children with prepared questions as starting points for inquiry. This is particularly relevant since P4C is one of the few educational settings that offers a space for children to question and explore the variation of their questions’ impact. The purposeful integration of questions does justice to the inheritance of the philosophical tradition, and reinforces questions as a privileged way for human beings to relate to the world. More than simply a methodological step in designing a P4C session, questions are an educational resource and are a central part of thinking and inquiry in a philosophical session. The paper proposes a new way to leverage these tools, arguing that defining philosophy as an obsession to overcome opacity and aim for transparency (Caeiro, 2015) can help participants identify questions that may empower dialogue in a philosophical way.


community of inquiry; questions; opacity; transparency

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