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The Proceedings of the Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy

Volume 3, 1999

Philosophy of Education

Matthew Lipman
Pages 21-26

What is Happening with P4C?

The aim of philosophy for children (P4C) is to stimulate children to think carefully, to develop better reasoning and judgments, and to engage in the analysis of some general but ill-defined concepts. A different sort of approach is exemplified by Gareth Matthews, who demonstrates how adults attuned to philosophy can engage children in conversations that disclose and enlarge upon the philosophical dimension of children’s thinking. There are still other approaches. In this essay, I outline many of the highlights in the development of philosophy for children of the last twenty years, and conclude with comments about a philosophy of childhood.

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