IOE - Faculty of Education and Society


From polite agreement to passionate uncertainty

12 October 2022, 5:30 pm–7:15 pm

Children playing together. Image: cottonbro via Pexels

In this seminar, Rupert Higham and a primary school teacher will look at ‘turning towards difference’ in primary Philosophy for Children (P4C) lessons.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to





Judith Suissa


Room C3.14 (Level 3)
20 Bedford Way

P4C develops thinking skills through dialogue, and is popular worldwide.

At the event we will question aspects of P4C’s theory and practice, and trial a modified approach.

We will also talk about our case study demonstrating children’s empathy and imagination alongside their reasoning, and turning towards difference rather than seeking to close it down.

Building on Chetty’s critique of reasonableness and reluctance to discuss race in P4C, and Margaret Sharp’s insightful, unexplored work, we advocate a strand of dialogic theory that values engaging with difference above seeking agreement, and tackling timely rather than timeless problems.

This event will be particularly useful for those interested in Philosophy for children.

PESGB seminar series

This event is part of the Philosophy of Education Society of Great Britain (PESGB) seminar series. PESGB is a learned society that promotes the study, teaching and application of philosophy of education. Its London Branch hosts seminars every Wednesday in conjunction with the Centre for Philosophy of Education. These seminars are led by national and international scholars in the field, covering a wide range of issues of educational and philosophical concern.

All are welcome to attend.

Related links

About the Speaker

Rupert Higham

Associate Professor at IOE

Rupert leads the IOE's Applied Educational Leadership Masters programme. He previously taught English in secondary schools, trained schools to use the Index for Inclusion, co-led a centenary conference on Dewey’s Democracy and Education, and co-founded of the Cambridge Educational Dialogue Research (CEDiR) group.

His work has 3 themes: values-led school improvement; improving the quality of educational dialogue; developing responsible leadership and democratic practice. Together these address his core question: "How do we challenge and support young people to act in accordance with their values 

More about Rupert Higham