Israel Proposes Philosophy for Elementary Students

The Education Ministry of Israel has proposed to add philosophy to the country’s elementary school curriculum. The proposal would have students “be taught the works of the prominent philosophers, develop critical thinking and learn how to ask meaningful questions and answer them in a serious manner,” starting in the third grade, according to an article at Israel Hayom. The program would be optional at first, taken up by schools interested in offering philosophy.  From the article:

The subject matter will include texts, philosophical thinking, literature, poetry, journalism and more. The lessons will be interactive, with students encouraged to express their opinions on questions that arise in class and come up with defensible answers. The aim of the program is to develop critical thinking and logic skills as well as cultivating such characteristics as listening, caring, respect and appreciation for ideas.

The ministry will start training teachers in the curriculum this summer so that instruction can begin in the fall.

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