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A Primer for Philosophy & Education Paperback – May 2, 2013
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About the Author
Samuel D. Rocha is an assistant professor in the educational foundations and research graduate program at the University of North Dakota and the president of the Society for the Philosophical Study of Education.
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Top customer reviews
1.) First hand Philosophy. Rocha commented how Philosophy in higher education is mainly second hand. I have always found it odd how I received my degree by virtually doing third hand work (commenting on commenters). Considering Rocha’s work is itself Philosophy, then what do colleges have to fear? Shouldn’t the practice of philosophy have everything to gain?
2.) School. Rocha distinguishes education and schooling. I could not agree more! As a teacher, I constantly encounter students who will sacrifice an original thought for a grade. Education, as Rocha defines it, is something pure that cannot be bought with a textbook. I only wish he would have gone one step further and given a paragraph on education as an aesthetic offering!
3.) Higher ideals. Rocha uses love and courage as starting points for education. These are convictions we can spend our entire lives fighting for. If we, as teachers and philosophers, were to be motivated by these values, then perhaps we might fight the tide of school. Government standards are arbitrary and fleeting; love and courage never go out of fashion.
4.) Down with Blooms! As a student of Philosophy who became a teacher, my “taxonomy” is knowledge and understanding. Period. Considering how most teachers swoon around Bloom’s Sacred Taxonomy, I found it refreshing to see the only two standards that matter. School could learn from this!
If you are a curious buyer, I wholeheartedly recommend this book. Do not take its simplicity lightly, for you can read straight through and miss the point. As a Primer, its value is defined by its return to first principles—to those standards which cannot be measured on any “test.” Philosophy and Education should work together in harmony. I fully plan on returning to this book for years and years to come.
This book goes far beyond being a primer for studying philosophy and education but a primer for living life.
I reluctantly give the book 1 star to alert other readers that this is NOT a book about the philosophy of education (or philosophy and education). Instead, it is only a PRIMER, as it says in the title and as Prof Rocha explains in the book. Prof Rocha intends this book to motivate his students to think deeply about their studies, which is clearly a laudable aim, and I think one that he achieves in this book. He intends his students to read this book before they read or study anything in the philosophy of education, so the book does not really contain anything about the philosophy of education, itself.
The book has a laudable aim, is clear about its aim, and achieves it. It deserves a high rating for that, but the book's aim is not relevant to me, so I give it a low rating relative to my personal interests and to flag the unique nature of the book to other readers looking for a book on the philosophy of education.
I would not have had this problem if Amazon had allowed a larger sample of the book on my kindle app. The sample did not give me enough (not even the first page of the first chapter) to properly understand what this book was really about.
That requires a willingness to live in the present, instead of brushing off questions with promises to answer them later. The reality is, I won't remember the question and neither will the kids. It requires a willingness to love my kids and to love knowledge. It requires a willingness to keep learning myself, not as a means to an end, but as an end in itself.
It's really easy to lose sight of that in the grueling, sticky abyss of mothering lots of young children. But these formative years are crucial if I want to instill a deep love of truth in my kids. Sam's Primer for Philosophy and Education has been a flashpoint for me, a reminder not only of what I'm supposed to be doing, but of how I'm supposed to be doing it.
I truly think this is a book that everyone should read, but it will especially hit home with mothers, whether you homeschool or conventional school or unschool. It's something I've turned back to several times already and will continue to keep handy. It's something my kids will be reading, probably multiple times. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.
-Calah Alexander (signed in under my husband's name, sorry!)