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A Dog's Life

Philosophy Diogenes was a Cynic, a group of philosophers in Hellenistic times (c. 323-146 BCE) that dropped out of conventional society much like modern-day hippies. The origin of the word 'cynic' comes from the Greek (via Latin) for 'dog', and has the same root as the English word 'canine'. In this story we explore th...

Ages: Ages 11-14 (KS3), Ages 7-11 (KS2)

Subjects: Ethics

Themes: Responsibility, Independence, Happiness, Freedom, Ancient Greek

An Eye for an Eye

Stimulus There was a young man called Jerry, who lived with his mother. One day he decided it was time to move out and get a house of his own. He found a small piece of land to build his house on and ordered 500 bricks, which were delivered to that spot. The next morning Jerry went there with the builders but all the bricks were gon...

Ages: Ages 16-18 (KS5), Ages 14-16 (KS4), Ages 11-14 (KS3), Ages 7-11 (KS2), Ages 5-7 (KS1)

Subjects: Ethics

Bare Necessities

This session uses the song 'Bare Necessities' from The Jungle Book.  You may want to use the following clip as a stimulus: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ogQ0uge06o   First, show the clip (or play the song).  Then, sing the first verse with the class a couple of times:  'Bare necessities, Those simpl...

Ages: Ages 7-11 (KS2), Ages 5-7 (KS1)

Subjects: Language and Meaning, Ethics

Themes: Life, Existence, Difference, Conceptual analysis

Becky's Bright Idea Part 1

Stimulus This is a true story about a girl called Becky who had a very bright idea when she was 10 years old. Becky was just a normal girl and lived with a normal family in a normal town in America. One normal day after school Becky’s mum took her shopping. Her mum had to leave her in the car just for a few minutes while she pop...

Ages: Ages 11-14 (KS3), Ages 7-11 (KS2)

Subjects: Ethics

Themes: Responsibility, Happiness, Entrepreneurialism, Consequences, Choice

Becky's Bright Idea Part 2

Preparation Important: The resource must be downloaded for this session. Also, if you are doing this over a number of weeks, make sure to note which they chose along the way, especially the one you end the session on. This will be important later.   In this session, the class are cast as the Board of Directors of Becky’s comp...

Ages: Ages 14-16 (KS4), Ages 11-14 (KS3), Ages 7-11 (KS2)

Subjects: Ethics

Themes: Fairness, Consequences, Choice

Blue Penguin (book needed)

You are going to need the book 'Blue Penguin' by Petr Horacek for this session. Blue Penguin isn’t like all the other penguins. Surprisingly enough, he’s blue! But he can still do all the things that other penguins can do. So is he still a penguin? Will he be able to fit in with all the others? Task Questi...

Ages: Ages 3-5 (EYFS), Ages 5-7 (KS1)

Subjects: Ethics, Metaphysics

Themes: Difference, Fitting In, Friendship, Identity, Same

Boys and Girls

Simulus This session arose when I was given a ‘top’ English group to do some philosophy. It started when I overheard the following: Unidentified child: “There’s more girls in this group, so girls must be cleverer than boys”  Angry retort: “That’s sexist!” Use the above anecdote as yo...

Ages: Ages 11-14 (KS3), Ages 7-11 (KS2)

Subjects: Ethics

Themes: Free Speech, Diversity

Cheese belongs to you (book needed)

You are going to need the book 'Cheese belongs to you' by Alexis Deacon for this session.  According to rat law, if you found it, you own the cheese? But if someone bigger wants it, its theirs... but what if there’s a scarier rat who wants it? Who gets the cheese? Task Questions: Whose cheese is it? Is it fai...

Ages: Ages 5-7 (KS1)

Subjects: Ethics

Themes: Rights, Fairness


One of our specialists had an interesting session about competition. The children were talking about a football match: "I was gutted when my team lost". So the facilitator invited them to explain why... "because they were supposed to win" a few contributions later..."You are not supposed to win you are supposed to g...

Ages: Ages 11-14 (KS3), Ages 7-11 (KS2)

Subjects: Ethics


Project or print out and show the class 'Experiment on a Bird in the Air Pump' by Joseph Wright (easily google-able, and attached as a downloadable document below). Looking How many people are there in this picture? What are they looking at? Is anyone excited? Is anyone scared? Is anyone happy or sad? Are you surp...

Ages: Ages 16-18 (KS5), Ages 14-16 (KS4), Ages 11-14 (KS3)

Subjects: Ethics, Aesthetics

Themes: Behaviour, Art