Many teachers and parents feel their children are behind in personal, emotional, and social development, as a result of the Covid restrictions. Trying to catch up isn’t easy on top of the critical learning gap that exists as well. As the new school year starts, it still remains a challenge to provide children with good quality opportunities to understand their emotions, practice social interaction, and train their use of language.
Children’s book author Judith Millecker is convinced that doing philosophy with children is a great way to tackle those issues jointly while keeping it fun. Her new book series “The PhilosoCats” combines a picture book story with a philosophical activity book for children from ages 4 to 9+. The first episode, “I thought we were friends!”, is a story about anger, trust, and forgiveness. These concepts are introduced in the story and will be further explored in the included activity book which contains 20 pages of varied and skillfully chosen activities, from philosophical questions and mindfulness exercises to games, creative activities, and brainteasers. This variety will inspire and challenge the mind and critical thinking of children as well as adults in multiple ways.
Lukasz Krzywon, who is an educator, author, and experienced Philosophy for Children practitioner from Creative Together in Ireland, says:
“The PhilosoCats “I thought we were friends” is a simple story exploring a rich terrain of anger, trust, and forgiveness. Resources supporting the story skillfully connect philosophical reflection with mindfulness exercises and embodiment. It will be useful for anyone wanting to explore these topics with children at home as well as in the classroom. A wonderful addition to the philosophy for children toolkit.”
Exploring and discussing philosophy has many benefits for children. It engages and trains:
- critical thinking & logical reasoning
- verbal expression & communication
- personal & emotional development
- social development
- creative thinking & imagination
- understanding of the world
- being aware of one’s place in the world & critical citizenship
The goal of the PhilosoCats series is to support adults and children in having meaningful conversations, connecting with one another, and spending quality time together. The activity book is supplemented by guidance and tips for adults on how to do philosophy with children and some background information about the lives of important philosophers.
The PhilosoCats series is suitable for any setting, be it in the classroom or living room, for bedtime, or during after-school club.
Here’s what the author, Judith Millecker, says about her inspiration for “The PhilosoCats”:
“When reading stories to my young nephews, I often felt there was something missing. Most books stop at “The End” without giving children a chance to reflect on the story and the message they take away. As a philosopher and storyteller, I wanted to change that. That’s why I set out to inspire children to reflect, think deeply, and gain a new perspective.”
The first PhilosoCats episode “I thought we were friends!” is available worldwide as a paperback and e-book on Amazon, which you can find here: https://amzn.eu/d/alXHL70. The 20 pages of the activity book are also available as a free pdf on the website www.philosoworld.org, where you will find more philosophical activity sheets on other popular books, such as The Gruffalo and Stickman.