Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Learning Community

Question: What is a “learning community”?

Answer/Quote: “When I hear the word community, I think of Sesame Street or Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood. Everyone looks out for each other. They all solve problems together. And they’re learning something new…. What exactly is a learning community? Who does that include? What are their roles?.... A learning community includes all of the people who want to ensure that students are successful: the teachers and their colleagues and administrators the parents, and…the students.”

Comment: Good question, good answer. Unfortunately, I think the answer is simplistic. Especially at the secondary level, I find that some teachers present information and expect students to master it without any help from the teacher. Frequently, these types of teachers label struggling students as “lazy.” And again in upper grades, especially high school, some students engage in cutthroat competition to eke out the best grade point average. I’m afraid this definition of “learning community” is idealistic, great if it occurs, but usually doesn’t. RayS.

Title: “What Makes a Learning Community?” Shannon Blady. Voices from the Middle (March 2011), 68-70.

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