Debates in Primary Education  book cover
1st Edition

Debates in Primary Education

Edited By

Virginia Bower

ISBN 9780367548865
Published October 20, 2020 by Routledge
316 Pages

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Book Description

This powerful text encourages both pre-service and established teachers, as well as teacher educators, to engage with contemporary debates in primary education. Promoting a critical approach, the chapters explore a wide range of key themes including the importance of values in primary education and the imperative for a curriculum which embraces the whole range of available subjects. At the same time, the chapters are underpinned by a belief that children should be at the heart of all the decisions we make and that primary education should inspire a love of learning, for life.

The book aims to support practitioners to make informed judgements and feel confident to argue their point of view with deeper theoretical knowledge and understanding, thus increasing teacher agency and confidence in responding to complex educational and social dilemmas such as literacy levels and rising mental health concerns. Chapters encompass both the macro aspects of primary education and more specialised debates on key topics such as reading, mathematics, languages, early years education and the use of technology.

With annotated further reading and reflective questions, this key text is essential reading for all those wanting to develop a better understanding of the issues that shape their practice including student teachers at both undergraduate and postgraduate level, practising teachers engaged in continuing professional development and teacher educators.

Table of Contents


Virginia Bower

Chapter 1: The Purpose of Education: The Purpose of Primary Education

Virginia Bower

Chapter 2: Intimations of Utopia: Values, Sustaining Environments and the Flourishing of Children and Teachers

Jonathan Barnes

Chapter 3: Reconceptualising Teacher Identity

Paula Stone

Chapter 4: Fundamental British Values: Are They Fundamental?

Imran Mogra

Chapter 5: What is Effective Pedagogy in the Reception Year?

Zoe Lewis

Chapter 6: Exploring how Early Years Settings Might Promote High Quality Communication and Language Opportunities Through Community-Based Projects

Vanessa Sawyer and Megan Stephenson

Chapter 7: Teaching Early Reading: The Phonics Debate

Rebecca Austin

Chapter 8: The Arts as Handmaiden

Hermione Ruck Keene

Chapter 9: The Place of Foreign Languages in the Primary School

Louise Pagden

Chapter 10: Promoting a Bilingual Approach in the Primary Classroom

Virginia Bower

Chapter 11: Debates in Primary Science Education

Leigh Hoath

Chapter 12: Religious Education – What is it Trying to Do?

Rhiannon Love and Alasdair Richardson

Chapter 13: Geography and History – A Sense of Time and Place

Wendy Garner and Tony Pickford

Chapter 14: Using Digital Strategies for Primary Learning

Lee Hazeldine

Chapter 15: The Teaching and Learning of Primary Mathematics

Gina Donaldson

Chapter 16: Debates in the Teaching of Primary Physical Education

Julia Lawrence

Chapter 17: Teachers as Readers and Writers

Teresa Cremin

Chapter 18: Teaching Poetry Within an Accountability Culture

Andrew Lambirth

Chapter 19: ‘The Needs of the Many Outweigh the Needs of the Few’: Support for Children with SEND in Times of Austerity

Andy Bloor

Chapter 20: Leading the Way

Catherine Carden

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Virginia Bower is currently a Senior Lecturer at Canterbury Christ Church University and an Associate Lecturer with The Open University.