Philosophy for Children

SAPERE-silver-award-logo.jpg Randwick are excited to announce that we have been awarded the Silver accreditation for P4C.



“The unexamined life is not worth living.”

― Socrates




P4C is an approach to teaching and learning, in which children take part in philosophical enquiry. It enhances thinking and communication skills, boosts confidence and self-esteem, and improves behaviour and well-being.

We are working with Chalford Hill Primary and Anne Edwards Primary (in South Cerney) on a three-year journey, which started with our joint INSET day at the start of the 2021-2022 academic year, to achieve the gold standard, through SAPERE.

In P4C, a stimulus, such as a story, video clip or image, is shared with a group of children (usually the whole class). The children are encouraged by a trained facilitator, their teacher, to come up with the kind of big, engaging philosophical questions about the stimulus which are at the heart of P4C. These questions might be in response to something that has happened during the week, perhaps in school or in the news. They help us question how things are and enable children to consider together what it is to be a member of our diverse and rich society.

Philosophical questions are open to examination, further questioning and enquiry. They are contestable, central and common – that is, there is more than one valid point of view, the question is important in the lives of the children, and it is a shared issue or concern. Children might come up with philosophical questions such as:

Is it ever OK to lie?

What makes you you?

Do we have to respect everyone?

Can good people do bad things?

Do we all have the same rights?

Through a vote, the children then choose the question they would most like to discuss. The teacher gives the children time to think and reason individually about the question before facilitating the exchange of ideas and opinions as a group, or community of enquiry. Over time, the teacher supports the children to think more deeply and philosophically by encouraging the 4Cs of P4C – critical, creative, collaborative and caring thinking.

As questions grow more philosophical and imaginative, children learn to listen carefully to each other, to explore differences of opinion respectfully, and to value the ideas of others.

P4C is a whole school approach. It is used across the curriculum, in every subject, and with all ages and abilities. P4C is also taught as a discrete weekly session at Randwick so that the children develop their skills and understanding over time.

We also have a termly P4C question, linked to our school value. This question is explored as a whole school community in a termly P4C assembly and then discussed in each class for chikdren to have the opportunity to develop their thinking. 



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