Theory of Knowledge

The subject TOK, Theory of Knowledge, explores how knowledge is acquired, both as individual quest and as dynamic social activity. Students are encouraged to discover and express their views and to share ideas with others and to listen to and learn from what others think.

TOK is all about asking questions and daring to know for oneself. It is subversive in the sense that it discourages swallowing piecemeal conventional ideas of the day or the prepackaged opinions of peers or authority figures.

Activity: Knowing that and knowing how

1. Imagine that you have sole responsibility to teach a coordinated five-year-old to ride a bicycle for the first time, without training wheels, in a twenty-minute window of time. Briefly, what would you say? What would you do?

2. Would the following advice help you at all in your attempt to teach the child to balance? Give reasons. "For a given angle of unbalance, the curvature of each winding is inverse y proportional to the square of the speed…"

3 . Try to explain what we can say about the difference between knowledge by direct experience (knowing how) and theoretical, propositional knowledge (knowing that). Base this on some or all of what you have just written.

Taks adapted from

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