Philosophical Chairs

With a similar format to that of a debate, Philosophical Chairs is less about competition and more about students providing their perspective on an issue and supporting it with successful rhetoric and articulation. This strategy—rich in inquiry—is built on a prompt to which contradictory positions exist. Participants address these positions through deep, academic discourse in a structured, formal process. The Philosophical Chairs process provides students with opportunities to improve their verbal capabilities and fluency, in addition to developing their use of precise academic and content language. Philosophical Chairs is also a form of team-building, during which a safe environment is formed that encourages students to take risks and share opinions with one another. Through exposure to varied perspectives, cultural worldviews, and personal experiences, students begin to appreciate the diverse nature of their classroom and see it as a source of strength and identity.