ERIC Number: EJ1080397
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Aug
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 48
Child's Voice, Child's Right: Is Philosophy for Children in Africa the Answer?
Ndofirepi, Amasa; Cross, Michael
Interchange: A Quarterly Review of Education, v46 n3 p225-238 Aug 2015
In this concept paper, we explore the notion of the child's right to be heard, starting in the classroom. The idea that children have unique needs has paved the way for the admission that children have a similar spectrum of rights as adults do. The notion that children are valued as citizens, and have significant contributions to make now and in the future is the foundation of the path to listening to children's voices. There has been mounting interest in the importance of listening to children's voices and their points of view. Notably, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child has informed conceptions of children as capable, competent and agentic. Giving the child a voice from early childhood is possible if opportunities and environments are availed them, particularly during their early school years. However, the majority of children around the world are yet to realise their right to be heard. We posit and defend the introduction of the Matthew Lipman-initiated Philosophy for Children (P4C) programme in schools as a fertile means of nurturing children's right to have their voices heard. P4C is a critical thinking skills programme designed to contribute to the development of rational, open-minded deliberation among young children, as befits a democratic society. Our argument is that P4C's community of philosophical inquiry as pedagogy is the best approach for the development of a critical, open-minded and right-bearing citizen, capable of living according to democratic principles in twenty first century Africa.
Descriptors: Foreign Countries, Childrens Rights, Philosophy, International Law, Treaties, Critical Thinking, Child Development, Inquiry, Democracy
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Africa
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child