Doing without Socrates

The Socratic method, when used correctly, is an ingenious and dependable way of fostering collaborative dialogic argument in the classroom. Yet the Victorian Department of Education and Training (DET) presents Socratic discussions as something more like a chinwag, with stock sentence-starters awkwardly jammed in. It’s not only a travesty of the spirit of Socratic dialogue, but a missed opportunity for supporting the development of genuine critical thinking in schools.

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