Learning to Be Better Thinkers

(As printed in the Canberra Times 29 July 2009)

At Canberra High School gifted and talented students learn how to think, rather than learning what to think, through philosophy study groups. Once a week students involved in the schools extension program 'Inspire' meet to improve a broad range of skills through the study of philosophy. In the philosophy groups students learn about verbal and listening skills, how to formulate their own opinions, and how to defend their opinions against the objections of their peers.

The philosophy group coordinator Dr John Chisholm works with students on a weekly basis to solve both group and individual problems. "Studying philosophy improves critical, creative and rigorous thinking," he says. "Participants develop their higher order thinking skills and the attitudes necessary for good thinking and communication." Students involved in the extension program are encouraged to apply this 'thinking about thinking' approach to all subject areas with the intention of extending their academic abilities further.

Picture of the Pilosophy Study Group

Picture of the Pilosophy Study Group

Pictured Above: Dr John Chisholm and the year 7 Philosophy study group.