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Becky Gates: Philosophy with Four Year Olds

Since 2017, P4C Texas has worked in collaboration with the Becky Gates Children Center (BGCC) to offer weekly “thinking time” sessions with the eldest two classes of preschoolers, those between 4-5 years of age. With a core team of Charles Carlson and David Anderson, new facilitators are rotated in and trained in facilitating strategies and in creating preschool P4C lesson plans. 

P4C with this age group is much the same as any other, we design lesson plans aimed to encourage inquiry and to introduce children to reflective and critical thinking by posing open ended Socratic questions. The controversial issues of preschoolers are not unique to that developmental stage, some of the topics that have drawn the most interest include what makes someone a friend, should we share and why, and why do we call things what we call them. We use a variety of activities including reading story books followed by discussions of the themes and questions raised in the books, doing exercises, and playing games that aim at helping children ask questions, listen to the answers of others, and provide reasons and explanations for their own proposed answers.