Philosophy for children? by Douglas Concha - MOSHI executive director

 Louise, 8 years old, MOSHI fan

Louise, 8 years old, MOSHI fan

"Philosophy for children?"

It's a typical question I get when describing MOSHI to people. The concern from adults isn't that children might not be capable of philosophizing, but that there will be no practical purpose for it. It is an age old question that even I was asked as I pursed my degrees in philosophy....

But why philosophy? What is the benefit for children? Philosophy, and a good education in general, doesn't indoctrinate a child, it doesn't tell her what she "should" know, like, imputing commands into a computer and having them spit them back out.

Rather, philosophy teaches us to think--creatively and critically--,and to not assume anything to be true until we have examined it for ourselves, and incorporated it into our very being, so that it transforms who we are and makes us better people. That is the mission of MOSHI: To make better children so that they grow up to become better citizens.

On a side note, I think we put too much emphasis on labels in education, but not enough emphasis on what works for children. I want people to really consider what is good for children and why is it good for children. If they do then I believe they will see the value that MOSHI creates in developing children that can think for themselves and express themselves in healthy ways.