The PATHS – A Philosophical Approach to THinking Skills project was born from the collaboration between INDIRE and the Directorate General for School Regulations and the National Education System of the Ministry of Education, in line with the ministerial document of 2017 Guidelines for the learning of Philosophy in the knowledge society.
The experimentation starts from the idea that the formative potential of philosophy, especially if put in dialogue with other disciplines, can help develop critical thinking in the student and a personal point of view capable of helping him/her to face the complexity of contemporary reality.
Philosophy can be a tool for an equitable and inclusive school and, even where it is not foreseen by the school systems, it can help to acquire tools that help the comparison with the thinking of others. Therefore, building on the debate on teaching philosophy in technical and professional institutes, INDIRE is working on a concrete proposal to introduce it even in schools where it is not part of the curriculum.
PATHS offers three main paths:
- Words: a didactic proposal that starts from the analysis of ordinary language (starting from the words that are more used by students, and which are therefore closest to their everyday life), then discussing the meaning assigned to commonly used terms. Currently on the platform there are about 60 words with over 400 texts that can be used as teaching material.
- Philosophers to think: a series of contributions by philosophers to deepen some of the words and concepts of philosophical thought to be made available to the school world, with a view to full collaboration between schools, universities and research. About 50 philosophers contributed addressing different topics and introducing words that were then also used for the preparation for the exam to obtain the School Leaving Certificate.
- The syllables: the course intends to favour the construction of philosophy syllables capable of developing philosophical and transversal skills.
More than 770 schools and over 1,100 teachers of all types and levels have already trained with this approach, which was also the protagonist on Rai Scuola last 9 February in the “School Laboratory” programme. In the episode Third spaces and third times in online work: the importance of personal motivation, the IIS Boselli of Turin talked about its experience with the PATHS – “Words”. The teachers of the Piedmontese institute had the opportunity to test the effectiveness of the approach, which was integrated into a civic education path: the students lived the project as an inclusive experience, which allowed them to enhance their strengths by confirming their interest in the themes of philosophy and critical thinking.
PATHS at Didacta Italy Fair
The PATHS didactic model – for Words for the teaching of philosophy will be presented in Florence at Didacta Fair in two different workshops: one aimed at training teachers interested in applying PATHS in primary schools (21/5 hours 12.30- 2.30), another aimed at secondary school teachers (20/5 at 9-11 am).
The meetings are both valid for the issuing of a certificate of attendance to the training activity.
Didacta Italy Fair (Florence, Fortezza da Basso, 20-22 May)
Registrations for the fifth edition of Fiera Didacta Italia, the most important national event dedicated to school innovation, are open. Over 250 events are part of the scientific programme, including conferences and seminars ranging from the technological area to the scientific and humanistic one. The event is aimed at all levels of education and training: infant, nursery, primary, lower and upper secondary schools, ITS, universities, scientific research and vocational training institutes, as well as companies and professionals of the sector. To participate in Didacta Italy Fair 2022, it is necessary to register online, consult the scientific programme and select the activities of interest, completing the procedure by purchasing the ticket directly on the portal, also using the teacher’s card (in this case the category to be selected to generate the voucher is “Exhibitions and cultural events”).