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Edited by Lynn Ang, John Trushell and Patricia Walker

This book provides a valuable contribution to our thinking about education in a modern metropolis. One of the strengths of this book is its diversity of topics which range from research with young children to adult learners, and compulsory schooling to higher education. The contributors are concerned with the particular demands of teaching and learning in a diverse educational context such as East London and offer perceptive insights into the complex issues that arise from this experience.
This is a thought-provoking and highly informative publication of the research ideas and professional experiences of our current educators. The authors illustrate the rich experience of the ever-evolving field of education by bringing together research and observations from their professional practice. Their aim is to support learning and teaching, through stimulating readers’ thinking about education, pedagogy, ways of learning, and the subjects that they teach. Edited by three authors who have substantial experience in a wide range of educational settings both nationally and internationally, this book is for students, academics, teacher educators and all those who are involved in leading and delivering education in one way or another.

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Bill Tait

Online teaching involves the delivery of educational material by means of learning objects, discussions, web 2.0 and other Internet technologies. Online tutors, like their offline counterparts, need to have expertise in their subject areas but the new medium requires additional knowledge of the associated pedagogy and technology. This may present some difficulties for domain expert practitioners with little time to keep abreast of developments in these fields. This chapter describes an attempt to formulate an approach that is intended to reduce these problems. It is a proposal for a unified model of a learning object that can be applied to all types of online learning, or e-learning, and incorporates all three dimensions into a single structure that enables comparisons to be made between different systems. It is intended to help academics to teach online with learning objects, to design their own objects and to be able to compare learning objects with other formats with which they may be more familiar.

The Art of Instruction

Essays on Pedagogy and Literature in 17th-Century France

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Edited by Anne L. Birberick

The Art of Instruction: Essays on Pedagogy and Literature in 17th-Century France aims to add a new dimension to the scholarly discussion on how culture is inculcated by focusing on the interplay between aesthetic forms and pedagogical agendas. The nine essays in the collection take into account the full range of meanings associated with the term art: science, method, learning, beautiful expression, artistic creation. In exploring the role art plays in shaping an instructional system, the volume’s contributors examine literary genres that are both established (comedies, tragedies, sonnets) and nascent (novels, manuals, gazettes) as well as the works of a diverse group of seventeenth-century writers: Chassignet, Subligny, Scarron, Lafayette, La Bruyère, Maintenon, de Visé, Boursault, Molière and Racine. What emerges from this diversity is an invaluable exploration of how educational imperatives, no matter their focus, rely as much on manipulating artistic forms as they do on articulating didactic principles. Broad in its scope while remaining thematically coherent, The Art of Instruction will be of interest to students and scholars of early modern French literature, history, culture and pedagogy.

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Abbas Madandar Arani and Parvin Abbasi

The literature on teacher satisfaction indicates that job satisfaction is the result of many interrelated factors. Among these factors, school organizational climate may have an important role. The present study investigated secondary teachers’ job satisfaction in relation to school organizational climate in Iran and India. 512 teachers were selected through Stratified Random Sampling from secondary schools of Arak city (Iran) and Mysore City (India). Subjects consisted of 226 men and 286 women. They were assessed using the Teacher Job Satisfaction scale (Sudha and Sathyanarayana) and School Organizational Climate Description Questionnaire (Sharma). Result may be regarded as indicative that some dimensions of school organizational climate influence job satisfaction of teachers. From a comparative perspective, it is clear that school organizational climate has more effect on Indian teachers’ job satisfaction than their counterparts in Iran.

Closed Education in the Open Society

Kibbutz Education as a Case Study

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Chen Yehezkely

Why is education in the open society not open? Why is this option not even considered in the debate over which education is most suited for the open society? Many consider such an option irresponsible. What, then, are the minimal responsibilities of education?
The present volume raises these questions and many more. It is a book we have been waiting for. It offers a rare combination of two seemingly opposite, unyielding attitudes: critical and friendly. Dr. Yehezkely applies a rigorous fallibilist-critical approach to issues regarding contemporary education. His diagnosis is that the source of our trouble is the closed undemocratic character of education, which causes education to become, in effect, a fifth column in the open democratic society. Following Popper, he concedes that democracy is every bit as flawed and as problematic as its enemies accuse it of being, particularly in education; still it is our only hope, since open responsible debate of vital problems cannot do without it. Democracy is risky: yet its absence guarantees failure, especially in closed undemocratic education, even when inspired by the most progressive ideas extant, charged with tremendous good will, and executed with selfless love and devotion. Kibbutz education is a case in point.

Namrata Jain

Childhood is for every child. It is marked by age and being. However, it is also the turning of a child into a gendered subject. The privileges of innocence and ignorance also bring in tow the hegemony of the adult and its ideology. Concordantly, children become the miniature ground for adult politics. In other words, turning children into gendered subjects, the society ensures its own longevity in terms of norms and codes of behaviour and social status or space. As a result, childhood becomes a prey of gender politics. On the other hand, class politics operate upon a child, declaring childhood to be a luxury. The coupling of gender and class brings to fore the marginalised state of a working class girl child.

Mhairi Cowden and Joanne C. Lau

The terms capacity and competence play a central role in moral and political philosophy by determining the moral status of a subject. More specifically, they play a primary role in the determination of rights, especially in the literature on children’s rights. Despite their importance, these terms are often used interchangeably, or not defined at all. This leads to confusion regarding their application and significance, particularly when using the terms to determine the rights of the child. In this chapter, we propose a distinction between capacity and competence that will help to address and clarify the debates in the literature. We then introduce the additional concepts of ableness. Finally, we argue that these concepts, distinguished in this way, can help to address future research within the field of children’s rights.

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Mualla Selçuk

Within the pluralistic character of society and the modern school, students are seeking a different kind of understanding about the relationship between their religious traditions and life. This affects Islamic religious education in many aspects, including its aims, its programs, and approach to teaching in the classroom. Recently, religious education has not been an activity of faith transfer but a matter of passing on new perspectives into the context in which the individual stands. Therefore, the teachers should strive to teach their students to live with the demands of plurality and modernity present in their world today. This paper will advance some insights on the methodological problem of communicating the Qur’anic text by introducing a communicative model of teaching in teacher training. The communicative model of teaching is a kind of reflection on the text of the Qur’an within the subject in its historical and contemporary contexts. It starts from the question: What is textual and what is contextual? This paper aims to present a communicative model of teaching, taking the Qur’anic concept of “people of the book” as an example.