1st Edition

Classrooms as Learning Communities
What's In It For Schools?

ISBN 9780415327800
Published July 19, 2005 by Routledge
244 Pages

USD $46.95

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Book Description

In classrooms that operate as learning communities, the social and learning purposes advance together through all participants being involved and engaged in building knowledge. This book demonstrates a new way of seeing and managing classrooms through:

  • an integration of what's best in learning and what's best in the social life of classrooms
  • a vision of the role of the teacher that is more creative and more related to the commitments of teachers
  • a more connected view of schools in contrast to the mechanistic view that currently dominates
  • an answer to the short-term performance pressures of politicians - better performance.

The practice and vision of classrooms that operate as learning communities is presented clearly and  encourages teachers to take steps towards building a more effective classroom with the aspects of learning communities they choose.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction  2. Classrooms, Change, Learning, Teaching, Community  3. Community  4. Classrooms as Learning Communities Practices in Classrooms  5. Goals in a Learning Community  6. Tasks in a Learning Community  7. Social Structure in a Learning Community  8. Resources in a Learning Community  9. Roles in a Learning Community  Observing Classrooms as Learning Communities  10. Schools as Learning Communities

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Chris Watkins is a reader in education at the University of London, Institute of Education and course tutor to the MA in Effective Learning. He has been a teacher and worked with pupils whose effect on school was sometimes disruptive. For twenty years he has contributed to improvements in tutoring, mentoring, classroom behaviour, school behaviour and learning.


'After reading this important and well-structured book, there is no doubt that classroom teachers will have a vastly greater understanding of the merits of operating as successful learning communities and will feel more informed and confident to make the cultural changes they envisage.' - Teachingexpertise.com

'The book does not shy away from discussing relevant theoretical debates and questioning prevalent assumptions about classrooms and learners, and draws extensively on evidence of research and effective classroom practice to identify good practice in classrooms adopting these innovative approaches.' - Teachingexpertise.com

'This is a book well worth reading.' - Journal of Education for Teaching

'This is a wonderfully useful book for everyone who is interested in creating learning communities whether they are reading it on their own or using it to encourage whole-school dialogue about learning.' - National School Improvement Network News

'It is an incredibly easy read and yet is never simplistic; a provocative book yet never patronising; and well worth every penny.' - School Leadership and Management