No 3
Philosothon Project Newsletter
Number 4 – June/July 2018
Welcome to the fourth Philosothon Project newsletter. 
An exciting recent development is the opportunity for students to participate in practice Philosothons. We are trialling this in 2018 and if it works we hope to provide other students with an opportunity to participate in practice Philosothons. These will happen in several locations including Melbourne, Adelaide and Canberra. Scotch College in Melbourne will host the first such event on 26th July and Australian Catholic University in Canberra will also host a practice Philosothon on the 27th July. Seymour College will host a practice Philosothon September 5th. The Melbourne and Adelaide practice Philosothons are already fully booked but there is still room in Canberra.
We are producing a video for people new to Philosothons and over the next few months filming for this will take place. Our intention is for the video to go on YouTube so it is accessible to all involved particularly students and teachers who have yet to participate in one.
The Sydney Philosothon was held a short while ago. Congratulations to all involved and particularly to Nth Sydney Girls HS which took out 1st place, Meriden was second. St Patricks College and St Andrews Cathedral School took out joint third. Thanks to St Andrews Cathedral College and particularly Dr Jonathan Hall and SACS for hosting this over the past three years. They are handing this on to Nth Sydeny Girls High School to host in 2019. All the best to those preparing for their Philosothons throughout Australasia at the moment.
Some 2018 Philosothon grants are still available e.g. travel grants and some training grants for Ph.D Philosophy students. Click on the links below if you are interested in these grants. Applications for 2019 will open in term three this year. 
Contents: 1. Practice Philosothons
                2. FAPSA Conference
                3. 2018 Australasian Philosothon Website
                4. Critical Thinking Seminars
                5. A list of 2018 Philosothons
                6. Revised Grant Recipients
                                                           Please note that there are still some grants available for 2018
Grant applications for 2019 close in November

The Council of ACT Education Associations, the Society of Philosophy for the Young (SOPHY) and Socratic Solutions Australasia are proud to present a critical thinking seminar for students. Critical thinking includes good communication, collaboration and even creativity and these can developed though students involvement in philosophical Communities of Inquiry. There is a great deal of evidence that suggests that students improve academically in science, literacy music and social interactions. This seminar will introduce students to basic critical thinking skills and give them some insight into how to use these skills at a Philosothon or in an Ethics Olympiad.

On Friday 27 July 2018 at 9:30am - 2.30pm

Australian Catholic University  Signadou Campus 223 Antill St Watson

Recommended Year Levels 9 &10 (flexible)
Click here to register a group of students from your school for the Canberra Session
Click here to find out more about the Melbourne Session (FULL)
Click here to find out more about the Adelaide Session (FULL)
Contact Details
Contact Event Organiser

9.30-10.15am Critical Thinking Skills- 
What does a good argument look like? Research suggests that  a more in-depth focus on enhancing critical thinking  skills in K-12 can add academic rigor and increase  the scores on standardized assessments. This  session will provide each participating students with  skills in how to analyze and evaluate arguments.

10.15-10.45am What is a Philosophical Community Inquiry and how can I participate applying best practice. By utilizing activities to 
enhance critical thinking, students are better able to understand why something has occurred as opposed to just understanding what has occurred.  This 
session will provide students with skills and insights into best practice in philosophical discourse.

Recess 10.45am -11am -Recess

11am-12.45pm Philosothons give students an ideal opportunity to participate in a philosophical Community of Inquiry - Collaborative philosophical 
inquiry is a pedagogy which—the research literature shows—brings improved reading, writing, maths, science and problem-solving skills. In addition, it 
brings important social benefits. Students will participate in a COI and have the opportunity to 
reflect on their experience with a view towards improving results.

12.45-1.30pm Lunch

Ethics Olympiads- The mention of Olympic rivalry probably conjures up images of battles on a ski run or on the athletics track.  But an Ethics Olympiad is a very different experience. It requires excellence in communication skills and ethical understanding rather than physical strength or co-ordination. It is a different sort of strength, a strength of character and a different sort of co-ordination involving collaboration and the forming of 
a well-reasoned arguments. It’s a unique opportunity for schools to engage their students in interesting ethical discussions with other students 
who come from different parts of the country and the world. In this session students will present their cases in a collaborative forum.


Fremantle WA

2. 2018 FAPSA Conference

Only two weeks to go till the "Future of Philosophy in Schools" Conference.

Registrations are still open- Click here
What was once called Philosophy for/with Children (P4C), now known as Philosophy in Schools incorporates philosophical inquiry in the classroom, reflective education and Socratic dialogue through the use of the Community of Inquiry (CoI) methodology.
The biennial FAPSA Conference will be held in beautiful, historic Fremantle, Western Australia at The University of Notre Dame Australia July 9 - 11, 2018.
The Conference theme asks: What is the Future of Philosophy in Schools?
Practitioner Expert Peter Worley CEO & Co-founder The Philosophy Foundation (UK) will demonstrate best practice alongside other facilitators of P4C for early childhood, primary and high school aged students. Peter will run a PD session with teachers at a one-day In Action Day held at Hale school on Monday 9 July 2018.
Professor Michael Hand is Professor of Philosophy of Education at the University of Birmingham (UK). He works in the areas of moral, political, religious and philosophical education. His books include A Theory of Moral Education (Routledge, 2017), Patriotism in Schools (Wiley, 2011), Philosophy in Schools (Bloomsbury, 2008) and Is Religious Education Possible? (Bloomsbury, 2006).
Professor Sandra Lynch is Director of the Institute for Ethics and Society and Professor of Philosophy at The University of Notre Dame Australia (Sydney Campus). Sandy is a moral philosopher, with expertise in applied and professional ethics, ethics and values education, the constitution of the self, friendship, critical thinking, and the intersection of philosophy and literature
Eamil enquiries:  Dr Laura D’Olimpio, conference convener, on  or got to the website:
Conference Registration Fees:
FULL      non-members:     $300 (Tues & Wed, UNDA Campus)
FULL              members:    $250
FULL students / unwaged: $150
One Day             waged:     $160 (Tues OR Wed, UNDA Campus)
            students / unwaged: $80
In Action Day           (Mon 9 July, 2018, Hale School, Wembley Downs)
One set fee (covers cost of refreshments and lunch): $25
Authors of accepted conference papers are invited to submit their completed papers for review to FAPSA’s official journal, the Journal of Philosophy in Schools (JPS) ISSN  2204-2482 which will publish a special conference issue: Vol 6 Issue 1 April/May 2019. The journal welcomes submissions which interrogate theoretical and conceptual understandings as well as those which draw on original empirical research within the field. Queries may be emailed to
3. 2018 F.A.P.S.A. Australasian Philosothon website
(Click on the image below to see this website)

St Peters College Adelaide
October 2nd (5pm) to the 4th (11 am) 2018
(Please note only qualifying teams are eligible)
Click here for 2018 Australasian Philosothon website
Contact:  Matthew Wills, Manager of Philosothon Project
 on to register your interest. 
We will then supply you with an information and registration form.
Phone: 0400029660
For more information about Philosothons contact Matthew Wills at

4. Critical Thinking in 2018

About the Seminar
Following on from last years beginners series we are offering an intermediate level 
seminar workshop for teachers in critical thinking. One of the most fundamental 
thinking skills that students can develop is the ability to recognise a proper argument 
and to distinguish this from counterfeit versions. Formal and informal fallacies, 
explanations and a convoluted series of propositions can all easily be mistaken for 
good arguments. Here we will explore creative and innovative ways to help students 
distinguish good and bad arguments. We will also explore collaborative and creative 
ways to help students recognise different types of good reasoning such as inductive 
and deductive reasoning. Please note; It is not required that delegates have 
participated in last years seminar.

This Critical Thinking seminar will:
Click here to register

2018 Philosothons
In 2018 the following schools and universities will be hosting Philosothons;
Western Australia
  • Perth Philosothon - Hale hosted the first Philosothon back in 2007. Trinity College is now hosting the Perth Philosothon. Contact Donette Firkins-
  • South West  - Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School- Oct 29th Contact Person - Jane Kirkham-
  • North West- St Lukes College Philosothon- Karratha - Contact Person Donna Clifford
  • Albany -  St Josephs College- Contact Person
  • Western Australian Primary School Philosothon The first WA Primary School Philosothon was held in 2013.

New South Wales
  • Sydney - St Andrews Cathedral School in Sydney is currently has hosting the Sydney Philosothon. Currently 22 schools are involved in the Sydney Philosothon- Contact Jonathan Hall -
  • Northern NSW  Bishop Druitt College in Northern Coffs Harbour will host their second Philosothon in 2013.  Contact Sue Paff Bishop Druitt College
  • Central NSW, Orange- Kinross Wolaroi School Contact person Claudia McCalman Email:
  • Dubbo - Central West Leadership Academy Primary Philosothon NSW Contact Mandi


  • Melbourne- Victorian Secondary School Philosothons- 15th October 2013 Contact the Education Officer for the Victorian Association for Philosophy in Schools (VAPS)
  • Melbourne -Victorian Primary School Philosothons-The Federation for Australasian Philosophy in Schools Associations are hosting the first Primary School Philosothon in 2012. Contact Rosemary Etherton Janette
  • Melbourne -Victorian Middle Years Philosothon  The first Victorian Middle years Philosothon was held in 2016. Contact the VAPS office if you are interested.  Click here
  • Philip Island- Newhaven College-  Contact person Richard Prideaux - Email:

  • Brisbane - Since 2014 the Brisbane Senior School Philosothon has been held at the University of Queensland- Contact- Peter Ellerton-
  • Brisbane- Cavandish High School In 2014 Cavandish HS hosted a Philosothon for Year 7 students.Contact Adam Kuss at;

South Australia
  • Adelaide- Prince Alfred College will host the first South Australian  Philosothon in 2017. Contact Matthew Wills if you would like to know more at;

  • Hobart- Tasmanian High Schools & Colleges Philosothon The first TAS High School & College  Philosothon was held in 2013 Contact Dr David Treanor.

New Zealand

United Kingdom

Click here if you are not currently registered and would like to participate in a Philosothon.

Click here if you would like to host a Philosothon.

5. Congratulations to the following 2018 grant recipients
There are still more grants available so apply here
Regional Philosothon Grants
Central West Leadership Academy Dubbo NSW Mandi Randell
Newhaven College South East Gippsland Philosothon- Phillip Island- Victoria- Richard Prideaux
Waikato Diocesan School for Girls- Waikato Philosothon  New Zealand-Mark Bellham 
Kinross Wolaroi School Orange Philosothon New South Wales- Claudia McCalman 
St Joseph's College Albany Philosothon Western Australia- Jane Bennett 
Ph.D Students Training Grants
Sydney University Jane Weiling Loo NSW
Monash University James McGuire Vic
Melbourne University Antonia Smyth Vic
Adelaide University - Timothy Nailer SA

 New Philosothons in cities

Guilford Young College - Tasmania- David Treanor 
SA Philosophy in Education Association & Prince Alfred College-South Australia- Lorelei Siegloff

Radford College & SOPHY - Australian Capital Territory- Bill Weigall 

 Travel Subsidies
Picture: Mark Bellham and 2018 Academic Leader, Day-eth Smit. Mark will be working with the schools Academic Council on there inaugural Philosothon.

Nambucca Heads High School  New South Wales- Amanda Taylor
Bunbury Cathedral College WA- Jane Kirkham

Teacher training Subsidy

Georgiana Molloy Anglican School Western Australia- Bradley Taylor 

Golden Grove High School South Australia- Sue Lyons  

St Josephs High School Albany Western Australia- Jane Bennett

Young High School New South Wales- Elizabeth Myburgh 

St Josephs College Albany Western Australia- Caroline Thompkin

Georgiana Mollow Anglican School Western Australia- Rachel Cook 
Resourse Development Grants
Robert Neurarth  NSW
Over the next three years FAPSA will make available grants for schools and others to set up or participate in Philosothons. Studies have shown that students participating in a philosophical community of inquiry improve on a variety of academic and social measures. If you would like to make this available to your school community click one of the grant links or contact the Philosothon project office.
                                                           Please note that there are still some grants available for 2018
Grants for 2019 close in November
Contact: Project co-ordinator Mr Matthew Wills (e) | Ph: +61 (0)400 029 660 | FAPSA Website: This project was made possible through the support of a grant from Templeton Religion Trust. The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of Templeton Religion Trust.