1 University of Naples Federico II (ITALY)
2 University of Graz (AUSTRIA)
3 CFpN – Association Center of Philosophy for Children (SPAIN)
4 Topaz – Leading Social Innovation( (ISRAEL)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2013 Proceedings
Publication year: 2013
Pages: 359-363
ISBN: 978-84-616-3847-5
ISSN: 2340-1095
Conference name: 6th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 18-20 November, 2013
Location: Seville, Spain
The proposed paper focuses on the need of deploying new educational strategies to cope with the challenges raised by contemporary scenarios of increasing mobility and, consequently, to address the needs of children at risk of exclusion for the lack of intercultural dialogue as a precondition for social cohesion. In particular, the stress will be upon what can be innovative approaches in school contexts. Indeed, in the transition to the new schooling context, immigrant children and minority groups often experience educational disadvantages and require particular support to fulfill their potential. For example, the EU highlights that the school performance of pupils with migrant background is lower than those of native pupils and stresses the need to revamp educational models and institutions accordingly.

This requires to develop educational actions that can provide immigrant children and, more generally, children at risk of exclusion for the lack of intercultural dialogue (e.g. children belonging to cultural minorities) with cognitive and cultural tools which can support their learning and living and help them in achieving higher levels of inclusion and participation. On the other hand, these actions should provide resident children with dialogical and reflective competences that are the basis for the construction of a real cosmopolitan dialogue.

Against this backdrop, the proposed paper will present the PEACE project which aims at promoting cosmopolitanism and global citizenship in primary school age children. The chief innovation of PEACE consists in fostering, by creating specific materials, philosophical communities of enquiry composed of children with different cultural roots. The approach to cosmopolitanism and intercultural dialogue in PEACE happens less through a mere working and living together than through the involvement of children into a philosophical dialogue, which improves children’s ability of making sense of a “cosmopolitan reality” (Beck 2000; 2002). Philosophically making sense of the cosmopolitan reality is a way on the part of children of really growing up global (Sharp 2009) without remaining ensnared in children’s characteristic “arrogance” (Eadem), that is, blindness to other ways of life, and, on the part of teachers of realizing cosmopolitanism as education (Hansen 2011; Oliverio 2012).

The presentation is directed principally to teachers and academics and is deeply in tune with the main theme of the conference to the extent that it raises the issue of what education up to the reality of a global world should look like and it endeavours to provide one (possible) answer both at the theoretical and at the methodological level.
Cosmopolitan education, philosophical inquiry, inclusion.