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Teaching Philosophy

Volume 36, Issue 3, September 2013

Philosophy in High Schools

Robert Colter, Joseph Ulatowski
Pages 253-270
DOI: 10.5840/teachphil201336333

What's Wrong with This Picture?
Teaching Ethics through Film to Wyoming High School Students

We regularly teach for the Wyoming High School Institute (“HSI”), a three-week college experience for rising high school juniors. The purpose of HSI is to introduce pre-college students to subjects not regularly taught in the secondary school curriculum. In our course, we introduce moral philosophy through the use of feature films. More narrowly, we challenge the students to examine moral reasoning through analysis of the moral reasoning of characters in these films. Our pedagogical approach is based in the methods of Socrates and in the technique of “scaffolding.” We attempt to show how our approach can be incorporated into any pre-college philosophy classroom.