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Improving behaviour and reflective thinking

My Year 5 class have been lucky enough to participate in Philosophy sessions with Kath for the past 5 weeks. Many children in my class have trouble maintaining friendships and there are often arguments and unhealthy gossip. There are also

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Speaking and Listening, Alone with Others

Speaking and listening alone with others. The aim of this first of a series of short pedagogical papers is to explain and briefly explore some aspects of the relation between philosophy for children and educational development. The observations are based

Posted in Featured Post, Recent Thoughts, Thoughts & Praise

Alan Turing’s Intelligence

  In celebration of Alan Turing’s birthday this week, a reflection on Alan Turing’s Intelligence.  We all have a tendency to look into ourselves and behold the paradigm by which intelligence should be measured.  Descartes noted this is in the

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Blooming Minds in SE. London & N. Kent Schools

For the last few months, the Blooming Minds team have been piloting our Teacher’s Handbooks and accompanying Pupil’s Workbooks with Year 4, 5 and 6 children at schools in N Kent and SE London. With feedback from participating teachers and

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A warning from the founder of the first Academy

The focus of current systems of education, from primary school all the way to University, is on gaining success in academic performance. In secondary schools and higher education there is additionally an increasing demand that learning be geared towards employability

Posted in Thoughts & Praise

The Thinking Room

There are a number of techniques that have proven very effective in setting the appropriate mood for the start or end of a philosophy class. The most effective exercise, and the one preferred by most children is the Thinking Room.

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Posted in Explore, Mindfulness

Knowledge, Sources and Certainty

Where does our knowledge come from? Do we have some hard-wired or intuitive knowledge, or are we born like a blank slate, gaining all of what we know from our experiences in the world? In this introductory lesson we will

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Posted in Critical Reasoning, Explore, Knowledge, Thinking Together

Open and Closed Questions / Agree-Disagree Game

Open questions play crucial role in inquiry and debate, especially, but not exclusively in philosophy. In this session we will distinguish between open and closed questions and try to formulate good open questions for debate. We will also introduce the

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What is Philosophy?

WHAT IS PHILOSOPHY? The name ‘philosophy’ derives from two ancient Greek words ‘philos’ meaning love, and ‘sophia’ meaning wisdom. Why is wisdom so highly valued? How can it help us to live well? This lesson explores these questions and related

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Posted in Basics, Beginner Plans, Critical Reasoning, Explore, Knowledge

Experience Machine

Many people live their lives believing that having good experiences are what make for a good life. We spend much of our time seeking out and trying to attain these experiences. But is having good experiences the most important thing

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Posted in Creative Exploration, Ethics, Explore, Ontology
Recent Praise
  • The Blooming Minds Handbook is an invaluable resource and used by both Year 4 teachers as a ‘bible’ in running sessions. The lesson plans are really well designed and the breakdown into stages of the lesson is very helpful. [Year 4 class teacher]

     

    The Blooming Minds Handbook for Teachers
  • My Year 5 class have been lucky enough to participate in Philosophy sessions with Kath for the past 5 weeks. Many children in my class have trouble maintaining friendships and there are often arguments and unhealthy gossip. There are also several children who display particularly difficult behaviour. Since the children have taken part in the Philosophy sessions, there has been a visible improvement in their attitude and outlook on their own behaviour. The sessions have had a significant impact on the way the children think and I often have conversations with them during the week in which they reflect back to the session. I often hear the phrase, “That’s like in Philosophy when Kath said…” or “It’s like we learned in Philosophy, we shouldn’t let our emotions push us to make bad decisions”. The phrases “I agree” and “I disagree” are now used regularly in the classroom, and the children readily speak about making decisions and using justification. I cannot begin to explain how pleasing it is for me, as their class teacher, to hear them reflecting in this way and using what they have learnt in the session to think about and improve their own skills and behaviour. Simply wonderful. [Y5 class teacher]

    Improving behaviour and reflective thinking