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Testimonials

We take great pride in what we do, and we always place huge value on feedback. Here's just a few comments from schools who have recently booked us:

"Never have I been on a whole day's training in which the hours actually fly by too quickly. I cannot recommend this p4c training highly enough!"

I really liked the fact that it was so interactive with constant practical examples - actually doing things and feeling what the activities feel like and what they bring out in terms of thinking. It was great fun too and very inspiring. In fact I couldn't believe how quickly the whole day went - it flew by because it was so interesting, fun and inspiring. I am a huge fan of P4C and I think your Philosophy Circles approach is not only beautifully simple but beautifully effective too.

Jason and Tom deliver a totally wonderful day's experience of Philosophy Circles and I say 'experience' because the course is packed full of practical activities - inspiring ideas which are shared and experimented with in an atmosphere of co-creative fun. Never have I been on a whole day's training in which the hours actually fly by too quickly - I am greedy for more! The Philosophy Circles approach makes the inclusion of a philosophical dimension into everyday teaching easy, flexible and totally possible without being a burden in terms of preparation, planning or time management of the curriculum. It can be incorporated into virtually any topic or subject, can be slotted in, take main stage or sit there waiting in the wings for those impromptu moments. Learning how to apply the Philosophy Circles approach is key. Mind-expanding and so much fun - Jason and Tom will give you the tools to put Philosophy Circles into action immediately. I cannot recommend this p4c training highly enough.

Rachel Hutchings

Advisory Teacher, Kent County Council

"When I first started my teaching I attended courses based on Philosophy for Children but after our recent training day with Tom, I feel many of the ideas and discussions really provoked new ideas for teaching and learning in my classroom."

As a New Head planning CPD for my staff my first thought was P4C. I have had experience of the training on previous occassions and had always left with a wealth of ideas and topics that I couldn't wait to explore in the classroom.  I wanted to inspire my whole staff to challenge the children and empower them to take the lead in learning. I feel that education is not always about getting the right answer but the answer that is right for you. Children need the opportunity to hear different opinions and perspectives and understand where they come from, this is how we create our citizens of the future.

"During the course of the training it was fabulous to watch my staff grow in confidence to allow the concept of a learning journey through a topic to develop. When in the classroom I never wanted to do the same thing twice, through P4C its very apparent that the same idea can go in very different directions if we listen to the children and their opinions of our world."

Lindsay Phelps, Headteacher

It was fantastic to have Tom share his knowledge and skills with the staff at St Gabriel's Catholic Voluntary Primary Academy. I personally found the training refreshing and inspiring. When I first started my teaching I attended courses based on Philosophy for Children but after our recent training day with Tom, I feel many of the ideas and discussions really provoked new ideas for teaching and learning in my classroom. The staff have used activities from the P4C training day in class this week, with the children. They have found these sessions fun, beneficial and creative. There has been a great impact on the engagement of all children in the classroom, with each child's voice being heard. A highly recommended day for the whole staff of a school. 

Laura Wordsworth, KS1 Leader and SENDCo

My knowledge of P4C was limited and I had not observed it in the classroom before. The day definitely exceeded expectations! It was engaging from the start and the involvement of staff as children brought the practical activities to life. Everyone has been discussing the session since and have applied it to the classroom(me included). I wouldn’t change anything for a first session as it gave a good overview, I would be interested to see a follow up session in the future.

Rob Wake, Teacher

"Staff not only enjoyed the day immensely but feel equipped to stretch and challenge the minds of our children and encourage them to think for themselves and speak out."

I wanted to thank you for your excellent training session yesterday. I have had very positive feedback from the staff; they not only enjoyed the day immensely but feel equipped to stretch and challenge the minds of our children and encourage them to think for themselves and speak out. I loved the emphasis on the children being in control of the situation with us as facilitators. I am taking my first two sessions today to here goes! I will undoubtedly be in touch over time and suggest that a recap at some stage in the next year. I really appreciated your input and for being so easy to have in school.

 

Mrs. Marianne Austin, Headmistress

Kew College, London

"All the positive testimonials provided by other schools was certainly a winning factor for us. The training and workshops were simply outstanding."

I inherited my role as P4C coordinator from my colleague who tasked me with planning a Philosophy Day. I had looked at several workshops and was pleased to stumble across The Philosophy Man website. All the positive testimonials provided by other schools was certainly a winning factor for us. The training and workshops were simply outstanding. 


All the staff had basic P4C training but did not know how to use it within their classrooms. This then acted as a CPD opportunity for all staff and this was furthered in the staff meeting. There was a buzz during the staff meeting, which for any member of staff attending a staff meeting at the end of a half term, knows this is a rare thing! All the staff said how enthused and excited they felt to get back into their classrooms and try out the methods they had been shown.

After the workshops, I interviewed some children about their experience. I deliberately picked children who really struggle with the academic side of school life. One child, who had a workshop on bargaining for his life against a Mayan tribe, said “I loved the P4C workshop. It was so much fun to think of reasons why my life was valuable and the best part was, we didn't have to do any work!”. The children saw the workshops as a chance to express themselves.

Thank you so much for inspiring us to continue with the exemplary training you provided and we look forward to working with you in the future!

Sarah Brown

Dulverton Primary School

"I have to admit, it was one of my favourite PD lessons and having used it with students properly in a lesson, I can now see more applications for it within my own teaching"

A colleague tried out the continuum that she wrote yesterday afternoon and reported back how powerful it was to promote discussion and to get the children thinking about the topic of consent.  She was really impressed with their level of maturity, questions and ideas and the way that the students opened up about some of the trickier topics that they had to discuss as result of the freedom that the task offered.
 
I tried out lots of things and we did some pointing at stuff, which the children loved, followed by a 3 question thingy 'which is better, cats or dogs', 'Love is different for boys and girls' and 'relationships are easy'.  We had some really powerful discussions and the students really enjoyed it.  We then continued with me pointing out to them that the biggest thing they had spoken about was trust, so we got out a blue giant lego block as a talking piece and debated 'trust is the most important thing in a relationship' - very cool indeed and the students easily filled an hour without even realising.  
 
I have to admit, it was one of my favourite PD lessons and having used it with students properly in a lesson, I can now see more applications for it within my own teaching.  I even thought of a tricky question to pose to my top set 'photosynthesis is more important than respiration'.  This could promote a very interesting discussion indeed, which would lead on to a 6-mark summary which compares the two equations and their differences.

Sarah Anson

Soham Village College

"Before the training, I didn't have any knowledge to the depths P4C could go with children's thinking."

Before the training, I wasn't familiar with the concept of the sessions and what each session could help the children achieve. I didn't have any knowledge to the depths P4C could go with children's thinking.

The training was brilliant. I really enjoyed taking part in the activities, as they gave you a good insight in the potential outcomes and focuses throughout a session. The training provided and explained a variety of stimuli and games, which fed into discussing the structure of a P4C session. The training allowed the adult to step into a child's shoes when taking part in an activity and this enabled us to gain a clear understanding and experience of how a child might feel and what they might be thinking in certain situations, especially if they are unfamiliar to inquiries. 

Our school have allocated slots during teacher's planning time, where we carry out P4C across the school (EY's-KS2). We use many of the resources that were provided on the training and resources sent via email to assist our teaching. We have generated displays and scrap books to display the children's work, discussions, stimuli and photos of the sessions. 

The continuous support through email is brilliant and is helping massively. 

Karla Fogarty

Holy Cross CEVA Primary School

"The day more than met our expectations – we were thrilled, and feedback was terrific"

I knew staff would be keen to learn something new, and the communication was excellent.

The day more than met our expectations – we were thrilled, and feedback was terrific. Even the staunchest and hardest colleague who really doesn’t like group participation was very impressed at the end, suggesting this would be really key for the launch of our new Bacc.

The half day worked perfectly for us, and I can see how it is readily adaptable for a whole-day too.

Staff were very engaged from my view, and have embraced more of it already. Some good feedback and photos of it in action during RS and PSCHE lessons this week already.

We plan to embed it firmly into PSCHE curriculum long-term , and to use the resources across RS, History, Geography as well as a stand-alone in form time at the very least.

 

James Hanson

Head, Aldro Prep School

"The resources are practical, effective and require very little preparation- which is great!"

After an inspiring and informative Inset Day, led by Tom, all staff were eager to try out P4C strategies and felt strongly about the principles P4C promoted.

P4C has enabled children to voice their opinions in a calm and controlled manner whilst having their views challenged. It has provided them with time to critically think about their own morals, beliefs and thoughts.

We invited Tom back for Interfaith Day! Through P4C, children naturally made comparisons and built upon their RE knowledge. Children thoroughly enjoyed the current and interactive assemblies, pitched appropriately for each Key Stage.

The weekly bulletins inspire and instigate current discussions with the children which can occur in many curriculum areas. The mini resource booklets are great too as they are concise and clear. The resources are practical, effective and require very little preparation- which is great!

Though we have separate P4C sessions, we have easily and seamlessly begun to use it in other curriculum areas.

Just fantastic!

Kayleigh Dell

Greenway Primary School

"I loved the idea of 'going into orbit'; I wasn't sure how it would go but yet again my pupils have proved me wrong and they were absolutely amazing!"

As a SEN school it can be quite frustrating to attend courses that only focus on mainstream schools. The wonderful thing about Jason and Tom's training was that I felt not only could I use all the ideas in my school but also that pupils with special educational needs have absolutely been considered in their approach. I have used a number of ideas and resources from The Philosophy Man website with our pupils and have been so impressed with the positive effect it has had on the communication skills of all but especially those on the autism spectrum. I highly recommend this training to any teaching professionals as I feel it provides a fantastic opportunity to support pupils' emotional, social and academic progress. Thanks again for a fantastic training session and for your brilliant website.

Immediately following the training I ran a communication group session based on the pirate thinkers game. I had a group of 15 pupils aged between 10 and 15 with a range of special needs but mostly on the autism spectrum. I explained to them that they we were pirates who had been shipwrecked and that myself and my TA had been swept away on a piece of driftwood so they had to decide who their new leader was. I loved the idea of 'going into orbit'; I wasn't sure how it would go but yet again my pupils have proved me wrong and they were absolutely amazing! Am definitely going to plan more sessions that allow for pupil independence. We have been doing philosophy in school for 2 years now and I was mindful of what Tom said about having to pump up a football before you play with it; this is so true of my pupils. We have worked with them to give them strategies for effective communication, debate and decision making so to watch them put those skills into action with no adult input was just amazing!

Alexandra Miller

Class Teacher, Fitzwaryn Special School, Wantage,

Once again, many thanks for an inspiring and encouraging workshop at Harmondsworth School. Personally, I found it useful to build on a shorter workshop ,which I experienced about 3 years ago, but also to see how it can be used in mainstream settings such as ours, as well as with higher achievers .

David Beeston

Teacher, Harmondsworth School

It was great to meet you and work with you today; I thoroughly enjoyed it; I found it engaging and thought provoking. It was super that we had so many opportunities to try out the activities/games etc. The 'hot off the press' booklets are such a good idea; I will certainly be reading through mine over the weekend as I intend to try out a game or two with my class next week

Ali Few

Deputy Headteacher, Broomfield School

'Very active, good clear explanations and stimulating! I'll use it with my child too, not just in class' 

Elena Rodolfi

'Clear examples of how the program should run. Very practical, hands-on, nice facilitator!'

Isabella Giraldi

'A great course for anyone needing a new approach to teaching and questioning. It really opens the mind to further possibilities' -

Jade Jones

'A thought provoking, worthwhile day!'

Maragret O'Connor

'Educational, eye-opener, practical and fun. It was practical so I had an opportunity to experience how children would benefit from this activity' Wema Mwendamseke

'A great workshop, interactive, filled discussions and stimulating' -

Siddique Miah 

'Well planned workshop, very interactive and fun. Can be applied to almost all age groups.'

Jane Sparrow

 

 

 

Teaching Staff

Morningside Primary School, Hackney

Engaging, pacy, well-presented and (Tom was) knowledgable. Lots of practical ideas and links to use in lessons. Great delivery, kept us engaged all day.

Adam Dlugoszewski, Whitehouse Primary School

Made enjoyable and memorable by actually taking part in the community tasks. Lots of participation which gives clear examples of how to deliver to children. Opportunities to think and plan for our own year groups. Tom delivered the course exceptionally well - clear and fun!

Delphine Gunn, Tickford Park Primary School

Confident, fluid and entertaining. A very interactive, hands-on and practical. I particularly liked planning sessions within the course.

Caroline Prudence, Two Mile Ash School

A good balance between presenting and lots of practical activities which enabled demonstrations of key concepts. I look forward to starting back in school!

Lucy Eldridge, Two Mile Ash School

 

Teachers

Milton Keynes Teaching School Alliance

Brilliant! Tom was gentle and inclusive and allowed us all to contribute. Just great! Come and deliver a session in school!

Cathy Kelly, St Thomas Aquinas School

Lots of practical ideas and activities that can be used easily in school. These can easily be adapted to the curriculum already being taught. Tom was very knowledgable and able to adapt ideas and direction of course to answer individual questions.

Karen Bridges, Deputy Headteacher, Green Park School

Tom was very engaging and had a good mix of practical and theory. A thoroughly engaging course with practical elements you can use in the classroom the next day.

Tom Ruffett, Two Mile Ash School

Fantastic training where all staff were highly engaged and are now ready to start the P4C strategies at school. Very well organised, fun for all and lots of ideas to use immediately.

Andrea Wadsworth

Crosslee Primary School, Manchester

‘An excellent way to develop critical thinking and confidence’

Jill Wright

‘An extremely useful session – children need to be critical thinkers’

Sarah Smith

‘Really thought provoking and interesting’

Hannah Thompson

‘A fabulous day that has inspired me to reflect upon everything;

Sophie Rigby

'Excellent day, very useful, really enjoyed this lesson’Carmaleta Henshaw

Carmaleta Henshaw

‘All very relevant and easy to relate to. A creative way to engage adults and encourage / inspire them to plan differently. Clear progression from Year 1-6’

Sophie Hadwin

‘Great examples given to enable children to become critical thinkers’

Claudia Cotton

Teachers at Whitefield Primary School

I just wanted to drop you a message to say thank you so much for such a fab session on Tuesday. I thought it was informative, relevant and full of very useable practical ideas which will definitely be used in my year two classroom. 

Thank you once again.

Sophie Vellacott

Year 2 Teacher, London

'This was a very active, informative session and has provoked a lot of ideas about how I can implement it in my classroom.'

'Outstanding presentation.'

'Great facilitator with lots of energy!'

'Fab! Lots of hints and tips and great interactive demonstrations. I now feel confident to have a go at implementing in a science lesson.'

'Absolutely excellent, thank you!''Really brilliant - has given me lots of ideas. Am excited anboit applying these in my classroom.'

Teachers

Lomdon Teachfirst Conference 2016

'Best INSET ever. Fantastically resourced, well paced and great learning.'

'Got us all thinking. Lots of brilliant ideas to use in the classroom. Really interactive.'

'I am going to take up Philosophy! Very thought provoking!'

'Activities are challenging to the thought process. I intend to use all of them in my teaching.'

'Excellent ideas to encourage children to think and debate. Also to question their opinions in a safe environment.'

'Great pace and presentation.'

Teaching Staff

Greenway Primary School

After the workshops, I interviewed some children about their experience. I deliberately picked children who really struggle with the academic side of school life. One child, who had a workshop on bargaining for his life against a Mayan tribe, said “I loved the P4C workshop. It was so much fun to think of reasons why my life was valuable and the best part was, we didn't have to do any work!”. The children saw the workshops as a chance to express themselves.

Sarah Brown

Dulverton Primary School

It made me think, ‘this is what I want my teaching to be’.  There wasn’t a single student who didn’t get involved and I also saw kids who’ve been quite de-motivated at times step into the ring looking like intellectual prize fighters! And it was so much fun.  Wonderful!

Sara Thorp

Teacher

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