Fostering Wisdom in the Classroom, Part 2: A Curriculum

Teaching Philosophy (forthcoming)
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Abstract

Advances in both the science and theory of wisdom have made it possible to create sound wisdom curricula and test them in the classroom. This article is a report of one such attempt. We developed a curriculum consistent with theories of wisdom that espouse the following five methods: challenge beliefs; prompt the articulation of values; encourage self-development; encourage self-reflection; and groom the moral emotions—facilitated by the reading of narrative or didactic texts and fostering a community of inquiry. The texts used in class were the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius, the Analects of Confucius, and the Dhammapada. The requirements were reading the texts, writing reflection journals, active participation in class, and a personal philosophy of life summary. In this article, we explain each of these requirements, relate our particular methods to the more general methods, and speculate about how these methods may develop specific wisdom capacities.

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Brian Bruya
Eastern Michigan University

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