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Reform(ing) Education

The Jena-Plan as a Concept for a Child-Centred School

Ralf Koerrenz

"School as counter-public" is the hermeneutic key with which Ralf Koerrenz interprets the school model of the Jena Plan. Similar to the Dalton-Plan or the Winnetka-Plan, the Jena Plan is one of the most important concepts of alternative schools developed in the first half of the 20th century as part of the international movement for alternative education, the “World Education Fellowship”.

Peter Petersen's "Jena Plan" concept must be understood from his educational philosophical foundations. The didactic levels of action at school (teaching, learning) as well as the reflection of theory in pedagogical practice are made understandable by "school as a counter-public". Not least with a view to the today's Jena Plan schools, the question is asked for a context-independent core of what makes a school a Jena Plan school. The opportunities and ambivalences of the model thus become equally visible.

Edited by Ralf Koerrenz, Friederike von Horn and Friederike von Horn

The Lost Mirror traces cultural patterns in which the interpretation of learning and education was developed against the backdrop of Hebrew thought.

The appreciation of learning is deeply rooted in the Hebrew way of thinking. Learning is understood as an open and history-conscious engagement of man with culture. The consciousness of history is shaped by the motif of the unavailability of the “other” and the difference to this “other”. This “other” is traditionally remembered as “God”, but may also be reflected in the motifs of the other person or the other society. The Lost Mirror reminds us
of a deficit, which is that in our everyday thinking and everyday action, we usually hide, forget and partly suppress the meaning and presence of the unavailable other. The book approaches this thinking through portraits of people such as Hannah Arendt, Leo Baeck, Walter Benjamin, Agnes Heller, Emanuel Levinas, and others.

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Edited by Cédric Giraud

The ambition of this Companion to Twelfth-Century Schools is to provide an update on the research regarding a question that has seen many renewals in the last three decades. The discovery of new texts, the progress made in critical attribution, the growing attention given to the conditions surrounding the oral and written dissemination of works, the use of the notion of "community of learning”, the reinterpretation of the relations between the cloister and the urban school, the link between institutional history and social history, in short, the entire contemporary renewal of cultural history within international medieval studies allow to offer a new synthesis on the schools of the 12th century. Contributors are: Alexander Andrée, Irene Caiazzo, Cédric Giraud, Frédéric Goubier, Danielle Jacquart, Thierry Kouamé, Constant J. Mews, Ken Pennington, Dominique Poirel, Irène Rosier-Catach, Sita Steckel, Jacques Verger, and Olga Weijers.

Euler Renato Westphal

The purpose of this study about theological aspects of culture and social ethics is to investigate the relation between the theological tradition arising from Luther and the cultural immateriality which is culturally expressed in material progress and work.
It is necessary to remember that it was Protestant theology itself that enabled this secularization process. Protestantism and modernity with its secularization proposal are processes that condition one another. Paul Tillich calls modernity and secularization the “Protestant Era” in the context of the Western culture of economic progress. It was mainly the theological tradition of the Enlightenment that separated the kingdom of the right from the kingdom of the left, law and gospel, creation and redemption, in such a way that the scope of creation became so autonomous that it dismissed the justification through the work of Christ, the gospel.

Critical Collaborative Communities

Academic Writing Partnerships, Groups, and Retreats

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Edited by Nicola Simmons and Ann Singh

Writing comprises a significant proportion of academic staff members’ roles. While academics have been acculturated to the notion of ‘publish or perish,’ they often struggle to find the time to accomplish writing papers and tend to work alone. The result can be a sense of significant stress and isolation around the writing process. Writing partnerships, groups, and retreats help mitigate these challenges and provide significant positive writing experiences for their members.

Critical Collaborative Communities describes diverse examples of partnerships from writing regularly with one or two colleagues to larger groups that meet for a single day, regular writing meetings, or a retreat over several days. While these approaches bring mutual support for members, each is not without its respective challenges. Each chapter outlines an approach to writing partnerships and interrogates its strengths and limitations as well as proposes recommendations for others hoping to implement the practice. Authors in this volume describe how they have built significant trusting relationships that have helped avoid isolation and have led to their self-authorship as academic writers.

The Language of Mathematics Education

An Expanded Glossary of Key Terms and Concepts in Mathematics Teaching and Learning

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Shannon W. Dingman, Laura B. Kent, Kim K. McComas and Cynthia C. Orona

The Language of Mathematics Education: An Expanded Glossary of Key Terms and Concepts in Mathematics Teaching and Learning offers mathematics teachers, mathematics education professionals and students a valuable resource in which common terms are defined and expounded upon in short essay format. The shared vocabulary and terminology relating to mathematics teaching and learning, and used by mathematics educators is an essential component of work conducted in the field.

The authors provide an overview of more than 100 terms commonly used in mathematics teaching and learning. Each term is defined and is followed by a short overview of the concept under discussion that includes several bibliographic references the reader can use for further investigation. In addition to terms specific to the domain of mathematics education, select key terms common across all fields of education (e.g., curriculum, epistemology, metacognition) are included. The goal for this book is to serve as a resource for those entering the field as they navigate the language and terminology of mathematics education and as an asset for more established professionals who wish to gain additional insights into these ideas.

Lessons Learned from Novice Teachers

An International Perspective

Kari Smith, Marit Ulvik and Ingrid Helleve

The transition from being a student teacher to taking on the full responsibility as a teacher is experienced as challenging for many novice teachers. In this book, ten newly qualified teachers from five countries, Australia, England, Finland, Israel and Norway, tell their stories. What can we learn from listening to the narratives? What can we bring to decision-makers about how to support new teachers? Do new teachers face similar challenges around the world, or do experiences depend on their respective contexts? We found more similarities than differences.

Relevant research literature is used in discussing the cases. Much of the literature on novice teachers focuses on difficulties, and the stories presented in this book confirm that the first year is tough. However, the resilience, motivation and enthusiasm reflected in the stories provide reasons for optimism as regards teachers’ satisfaction with their career choice.

A major reason for deciding to stay in the profession is in the relations they created with the students. Satisfaction or stress related to the curriculum or achievements in their respective teaching subjects was not mentioned. The lessons learned from the ten novice teachers are useful when discussing the teaching profession, and not least, the induction phase of a teaching career.

Politics of Education in Latin America

Reforms, Resistance and Persistence

Edited by Carlos Ornelas

Politics of Education in Latin America: Reforms, Resistance and Persistence portrays complex situations of education change policies in Latin America from Argentina and Chile, the southernmost part of the continent, to Mexico, the northernmost. The analyses tour through Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, and Cuba to conclude with a chapter that scrutinizes why the big teacher unions reject most attempts at education reforms. In these, teachers are the target of criticism and, at the same time, the focus of the expectations for progress and better educational quality.

Readers will find a variety of contentious issues such as inclusion, equity, privatization, uses of power, and dialectics between the indications of intergovernmental organizations and the rejection of their recommendations by local political actors. They will also find narratives to raise public education participation, improve the quality of life of teachers, and put local education systems to dialogue with the global world. The politics of education in Latin America is a territory that groups and institutions continue to dispute since the establishment of their education systems.

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Stephen G. Parker, J. Berglund, David Lewin and Deirdre Raftery

This publication makes the case for ‘religion and education’ as a distinct, but cross-disciplinary, field of inquiry. To begin with, consideration is given to the changing dynamic between ‘religion and education’ historically, and the differing understandings of religious education within it. Next, ‘religion and education’ is examined from methodologically specific perspectives, namely the philosophical, historical, sociological and psychological. The authors outline the particular insights to be gleaned about ‘religion and education’ on the basis of their commitment to these methodological standpoints. Overall, this publication is concerned with demonstrating the scope of the field, and the importance of having a range of disciplinary, and interdisciplinary, perspectives informing it.

Share Engage Educate

SEEding Change for a Better World

Vinesh Chandra

There are no doubts that our world is becoming increasingly more connected through digital technologies. For meaningful participation in this environment, our children need to be digitally literate. Yet there are many children in developing countries who have yet to touch a computer because of social disadvantage. For these children, schools are the only place where they can build this capacity. However, many schools in these communities are under resourced. They do not have library books, let alone digital resources. As a consequence, teaching and learning strategies have remained unchanged for decades.

The field of critical pedagogy evolved through the initial work of Paulo Freire. This theory is underpinned by critical thinking about societal issues followed by action and reflection. When citizens are armed with such knowledge and skills, they can positively impact on the lives of the underprivileged. However, critical pedagogy is still struggling to find its meaningful place, particularly in higher education. This is largely due to the lack of effective models and critical educators.

This book is an auto-ethnography which presents accounts of the initiatives that were undertaken to promote print and digital literacy in rural and remote schools in eight developing countries. It highlights the experiences of school leaders, teachers, university staff and students, and globally minded citizens working alongside the local communities to enhance the quality of education for 15,000 to 20,000 children in these schools. The book showcases how critical pedagogy can unfold in the real world and how we can collaboratively make a difference.