Big Ideas for Little Kids: Teaching Philosophy Through Children's Literature

Author(s): Thomas E. Wartenberg


Big Ideas for Little Kids includes everything a teacher, a parent, or a college student needs to teach philosophy to elementary school children from picture books. Written in a clear and accessible style, the book explains why it is important to allow young children access to philosophy during primary-school education. Wartenberg also gives advice on how to construct a "learner-centered" classroom, in which children discuss philosophical issues with one another as they respond to open-ended questions by saying whether they agree or disagree with what others have said.


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Thomas E. Wartenberg is professor of philosophy at Mount Holyoke College and has been working with teachers on teaching philosophy for children for over a decade. He is a member of the American Philosophical Association Committee on Precollege Instruction in Philosophy. Among his other books are Existentialism and Thinking on Screen.

List of Tables List of Figures Preface to the Second Edition Preface to the First Edition Part 1: Teaching Philosophy in Elementary Schools 1.Natural-Born Philosophers 2.How I Became a Children's Philosophy Teacher 3.Learner-Centered Teaching 4.The "Game" of Philosophy Part 2: Preparing to Teach 5.The Elementary-School Introduction to Philosophy Course 6.Preparing for a Philosophy Discussion: The Discussion Framework 7.Facilitating a Philosophical Discussion 8.Deepening and Extending the Discussion Part 3: The Stories 9."Dragons and Giants": Teaching Ethics 10.Frederick: Teaching Social and Political Philosophy 11.The Important Book: Teaching Metaphysics 12. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz: Teaching the Philosophy of Mind 13.The Giving Tree: Teaching Environmental Philosophy 14.Morris the Moose: Teaching Logic 15.Many Moons: Teaching Epistemology 16.Knuffle Bunny: Teaching the Philosophy of Language 17.Emily's Art: Teaching Aesthetics Part 4: Implications 18.A Sample Discussion of The Giving Tree 19.Conclusion Appendix References

General Fields

  • : 9781475804454
  • : Rowman & Littlefield Education
  • : Rowman & Littlefield Education
  • : March 2014
  • : 226mm X 154mm X 14mm
  • : United States
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Thomas E. Wartenberg
  • : Paperback
  • : 2nd Revised edition
  • : English
  • : 372.8
  • : 190