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Why Wonder?

Aristotle said that wonder is what makes men philosophise.  It is also wonder, that brings about myth.  The difference between philosophy and myth is that myth has a narrative which makes the point.  But instead of using gods and the mythical elements of stories, humanity turned to logic and discovered ways to make an argument without the embellishments, like monsters and the supernatural, which were used in the ancient Greek times, to feed the idea. 


We have developed ways of laying out arguments for centuries, but we continue to wonder.  What instigates curiosity in our modern world?  What gaps are we filling with our arguments?  Death? Art? Political stances? Ethical approaches to science?  The underlying arguments we make are putting forward points on how to progress.  We don’t argue -intentionally, for ways of moving backwards.  To live a more eco friendly lifestyle by grasping traditions and past practises is on trend.  Hidden behind these ‘simpler’ ideas is actually the intention of progression.


Learning is key to progression, and with that is the teaching.  What do we teach?  How do we teach it?  Why do we teach it?  


Surely the answers to these questions are found in exploring the individual and deciphering a goal.  Engaging with a pupil and deciphering, what do they wonder?  A conversation can do more than develop an answer, it can raise more questions and instigate more wonder.  


If we were to take the classical Greek mythology, and put it in todays context, how would it be used to describe our world and how could we use this to develop our teaching methods?  Take the story of the Pandora’s Box.  Curiosity leads to all the bad things in the world escaping from the vessel, but with it, also escapes hope. It is a story related with a lesson described through metaphors, imagery and characters.   All individuals are characters with life stories to impart and knowledge to share.   Community it key in this process of sharing and the wider spread this community is, the better we can communicate about the issues we face in the world.  


Author


Anna-Maria Amato