Enquiring Minds

Socratic Dialogue in Education

Paperback / softback, 196 pages, 234 mm x 156 mm
1 May 2004
Trentham Books Ltd

Price: £19.99

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This book is the first in English to set out the theoretical underpinnings of modern Socratic Dialogue as a self-directed learning process. Central to the Socratic Method are the opportunities it gives educators and others to* learn about the Socratic Method as a new approach to their work* foster rational critical thinking skills* develop the learners autonomy * nurture emotional intelligence and qualities such as empathy As a process of philosophising in groups, Socratic Dialogue is attracting growing interest in the US, Mexico and Europe because of its potential contribution to developing learning. It will be relevant to courses in citizenship, personal and social education, health, social work and community issues.Inspired by the philosophy of Socrates, the German philosopher Leonard Nelson began to apply the Socratic Method to thinking and learning in the 1920s. By the 1950s Socratic Dialogue was being developed into a learning/teaching process, initially in Germany.Part 1 of the book deals with theoretical aspects of Socratic Dialogue and suggests possible applications, particularly in the school sector. Part 2 presents a range of Socratic Dialogue experiences in Britain and Germany and offers guidance about the organisation, rules and phases of the Socratic process. The foundation text by Leonard Nelson makes up Part 3. There is information about organizations involved with the promotion of Socratic Dialogue in Britain, Germany and the Netherlands and a survey of relevant literature.The work will be of interest to all those working in education, especially teachers of philosophy, ethics, religious studies and mathematics. It will provide an authoritative guide to educators who want learners to develop enquiring minds.

  • Rene Saran

  • Barbara Neisser

  • Dieter Birnbacher

  • Dieter Krohn

  • Tamsyn Imison

  • Ingrid Delgehausen

  • Mechthild Goldstein

  • Gisela Raupach-Strey

CONTENTS: Part 1 - The Socratic Method and education: 1. Introduction; 2. Socratic Dialogue and self-directed learning; 3. Theory and practice of Socratic Dialogue. Part 2 - Experience in schools: 4. The challenge of Socratic Dialogue in education; 5. Socratic Dialogue in teaching ethics and philosophy: organisational issues; 6. Experiences with Socratic Dialogue in primary schools; 7. Socratic Dialogue – my first experience; 8. Experiences with Socratic Dialogue in secondary schools; 9. 'We had to think for ourselves' – using Socratic Dialogue in mathematics lessons in a secondary school; 10. Socratic Dialogue in philosophy teaching in the sixth form. Part 3 – Theory in relation to practice: 11. The Socratic approach at school level: four models; 12. Six pedagogical measures and Socratic facilitation; 13. The Socratic Method. Appendix 1: Organisations offering Socratic activities. Appendix 2: Socratic Dialogue – procedures and rules. Appendix 3: Literature survey on Socratic Dialogue by Fernando Leal. Appendix 4. Original sources.

"Those who are familiar with Socratic Dialogue and those who have only recently discovered it as an approach to doing philosophy alike will find Enquiring Minds an informative text Analytical Teaching"