Thinking challenges for courageous children
Publication date: 01/02/2018
Suitable for: Primary 2nd level (ages 8-10)
Rights sold to: Turkey, China Mainland, South Korea
How is the universe in which we live made? Is there something from which all things originate?
Starting from questions like these, Philosophical Riddles encourages children from 8 to 10 years to reflect on different themes related to natural phenomena, human beings, language, and reasoning.
The book proposes 15 problems inspired by the history of philosophy grouped into four main sections:
– Philosophy of nature
– Philosophy of humans
– Philosophy of language
– Changing perspectives
Children will have the chance to get involved in child-sized big challenges that will lead them to practice hypothetical-deductive thinking and enhance the key skills that are transferable to different school subjects.
Completing the experience is the game section Building Utopia – The Island of Utopia: children can plan and create a map of their ideal island, collaborating and comparing ideas with their companions.
A short excerpt of the book translated into English is available on request.
Ch. 1 – Children and Philosophy
Ch. 2 – Guide to the Book
Philosophy of Nature
Everything that is
Towards the infinitely small
Towards the infinitely big
That which moves and that which stays still
Philosophy of Humans
Minds that grow
A sense of justice
Forms of government
Imagining other worlds
Philosophy of Language
The mystery of the origins of language
The paradox of the heap and other paradoxes
The strange relationship between words and things
A strange cave
An unusual art gallery
The Island of Utopia (game rules)
“How is the universe in which we live made?” “Is there something from which all things originate?” “What is a human being?”
A book to accompany children’s thought process and philosophical reasoning starting in primary school. With the help of teachers, children between 8 and 10 years of age will have the opportunity to engage in child-sized big challenges that will lead them to practice hypothetical-deductive thinking and enhance key skills that are transferable to different school subjects.
STRUCTURE OF THE BOOK
“Philosophical Riddles” proposes 15 problems inspired by the history of philosophy, written in a child-friendly format, that are challenging and stimulate reflection in children from eight to ten years of age.
The problems are grouped into 4 sections, related to:
Philosophy of nature (Natural phenomena)
• Everything that is; • Towards the infinitely small; • Towards the infinitely big; • That which moves and that which stays still.
Philosphy of humans (Human beings)
• Minds that grow; • A sense of justice; • Forms of government; • Imagining other worlds.
Philosophy of language (Language and reasoning)
• The mystery of the origins of language; • The paradox of the heap and other paradoxes; • The strange relationship between words and things; • Logic traps.
Changing perspectives (Activities for changing perspectives )
• A strange cave; • Mr. Micromega; • An unusual art gallery.
Each philosophical question is presented in the following way:
A page dedicated to the formulation of philosophical questions
A section dedicated to the philosophers’ points of view on the topic in question
A section with children’s points of view on the topic in question
A section dedicated to ideas for continuation with suggested readings, observations and experiences for the teacher
Here is an example of a philosophical question presented in the book:
Game: The Island of Utopia
The book “Philosophical Riddles” concludes with a simulation game on utopia, conceived to stimulate reflection on the profound social and political dimensions related to the transformation of the land. Observing the effects of their own choices on the environment (the island) and following the rules of the game, which permit a distinction between “private” and “public” choices, the participants will watch some features of the utopian landscape develop before their very eyes: features that they will be able to imagine and agree on together.
DEVELOP USE OF CITIZENSHIP SKILLS WITH PHILOSOPHY
For some years, the importance of developing the use of key competences for all citizens and of planning school activities in terms of these skills has been emphasized. Philosophy can be very useful in this sense, considering above all the mutual skills which must be "trained" in relation to citizenship skills (learning to learn, plan, communicate, collaborate and participate, act autonomously and responsibly, solve problems, identify connections and relationships, acquire and interpret information). Since the skills can be conceived as a group of abilities, of knowledge and attitude implemented in a context, training these skills requires a preliminary creative effort to imagine situations which are favorable to their development. This is where philosophy can be of help, because it proposes problems that put concepts and experiences together in an unusual way, creating favorable conditions for reflecting on what is known and what is not yet known, on one’s own limits and on the different strategies that can be adopted individually and in group when grappling with difficult questions, while valuing the errors and provisional hypotheses made.