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For Michael Burroughs, philosophy isn't just something found in a musty old book.As coordinator of UNC's Department of Philosophy Outreach Program, he takes the lesson out into the world and spreads it among all ages.He and a group of philosophy graduate students head out to meet with the first-graders at Durham Academy on Fridays. They also teach older students, up to high school and community college, and at retirement communities and juvenile correctional facilities.The program was founded in 2004, but did not have a full-time coordinator until Burroughs, a visiting professor, took over the program this year. He's been expanding it and finding additional grants. On a recent Friday afternoon, Burroughs and graduate students Kate Nolfi, Molly Josephson and Vida Yao visited Rosemary Nye's first-grade classroom to read and discuss "The Important Book" by Rosemary Wise Brown and Leonard Weisgard.The deceptively simple book discusses what makes familiar objects – an apple, the rain, a spoon – what they are.


Durham Herald-Sun