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Communities of practice

Communities of practice
contents: introduction · communities of practice · legitimate peripheral participation and situated learning · learning organizations and learning communities · conclusion · references · links · how to cite this article Many of the ways we have of talking about learning and education are based on the assumption that learning is something that individuals do. Furthermore, we often assume that learning ‘has a beginning and an end; that it is best separated from the rest of our activities; and that it is the result of teaching’ (Wenger 1998: 3). But how would things look if we took a different track? Supposing learning is social and comes largely from of our experience of participating in daily life? It was this thought that formed the basis of a significant rethinking of learning theory in the late 1980s and early 1990s by two researchers from very different disciplines – Jean Lave and Etienne Wenger. Communities of practice The characteristics of such communities of practice vary.

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A bottom-up approach to CPD is ‘best’ Imparting knowledge of teaching is not always best done from the “top,” explains Andrea McMahon. After attending his first Learning Lunch in the newly-established Centre for Excellence in Teaching (CET) at Newham College, maths lecturer Anwar Faruqh summarised his experience, saying: “What an excellent idea – it’s like having our own Institute for Learning on our doorstep”. His enthusiasm is exactly the sentiment that those involved in centre hope will gather momentum and inspire other teachers in the college to take ownership of their professional development. Engaging in activity whose primary purpose is to develop professional practice is the bedrock of expert teaching and training. The recently updated Teaching Standards capture this clearly as demonstrated through the three domains: professional values and attributes, professional knowledge and understanding, and professional skills. Professional development is most effective when a bottom-up approach is favoured over a top-down one.

Referencing - The Harvard System Department of Lifelong Learning: Study Skills Series (Download pdf version) Introduction As a student, it is important that you identify in your assessment when you are using the words or ideas of another author. The most accepted way of acknowledging the work of another author is to use a referencing system. At the Department of Lifelong Learning you are required to use the Harvard referencing system. 21st-Century PD: Retention, Reflection, and Redistribution of Knowledge The explosion of information available to educators for supporting classroom instruction is at an all-time high. Books, journals, blogs, forums, websites, social media, and peer-to-peer sharing create a wealth of resources for those entering the teaching profession. In the past 20 years, the landscape has shifted so severely around access to the best ideas and information that it has been impossible for educators to keep up. Because of this, many educators have declared information bankruptcy and retreated to a few safe places to access information. This was inevitable -- no one can learn, absorb, and implement this flood of ideas as the profession's complexity continues to grow. As teachers claim that they can't put more on their plate or make the plate bigger, how do we nudge adult learning forward and allow teachers to push beyond their comfort zone and bring fresh practices to the classroom without creating an overwhelming environment?

Communities of Practice (Lave and Wenger) Summary: Etienne Wenger summarizes Communities of Practice (CoP) as “groups of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly.” This learning that takes place is not necessarily intentional. Three components are required in order to be a CoP: (1) the domain, (2) the community, and (3) the practice. Originators: Jean Lave and Etienne Wenger in 1991 and further elaborated in 1998. Key Terms: domain, community, practice, identity, learning Communities of Practice

CPRd This blog has languished in my draft-posts for a year; you’ll see this from the date references! The main reason I didn’t publish over a year ago was simply because I didn’t want to wade into what was, at the time, an extremely highly charged debate about the place of research, evidence, and practice in education. My additional reasons for not publishing until now will, possibly, be covered in another post on another day.

LANGUAGE AND REPRESENTATION – THE THEORIES Why does it matter that language may be sexist, racist and so on? Apart from the obvious point that such language is offensive, many people that the language we hear and use has a big influence on the way we think. There are two extreme views of this issue, the universalist and the relativist. The universalist position is that all humans share common ways of thinking, a set of basic concepts about the world which we may call conceptual primes. Top 4 Places to Find Free MOOCs from Prestigious Universities March, 2015 MOOCs (Massive Ope Online Courses) are definitely a game changer in today's education. The emergence and popularization of MOOCs is due primarily to the widespread of internet connection and to the advance of web 2.0 technologies. MOOCs now are being offered by some prestigious colleges and institutions. The list below, curated from Detroit Chapter, features what we consider as the top 4 MOOCs' providers.

The social/situational orientation to learning The social/situational orientation to learning. It is not so much that learners acquire structures or models to understand the world, but they participate in frameworks that that have structure. Learning involves participation in a community of practice. DIY Teaching CPD How we teach is a complex mix of our values, context and emotions. It is deeply influenced by our knowledge, understanding and beliefs about pedagogy, our subject and what is of value to learn. No two teachers are likely to be the same. Front Cover of the New Improving Teaching Resource: What’s Your Next Step I’m deeply passionate about the education of both young people and teachers. I now spend a lot of my time educating the latter after fifteen years in the classroom.

Does Language Influence Culture? (Please see Corrections & Amplifications below.) Do the languages we speak shape the way we think? Do they merely express thoughts, or do the structures in languages (without our knowledge or consent) shape the very thoughts we wish to express? Take "Humpty Dumpty sat on a..." Even this snippet of a nursery rhyme reveals how much languages can differ from one another. In English, we have to mark the verb for tense; in this case, we say "sat" rather than "sit." 5 Digital Forums to Transform Professional Learning for Educators Are you ready to connect your professional learning to the modern era? Which venue of digital connection is right for you? If you are a teacher in need of support, a leader looking to transform professional engagement at your school, or just looking to refresh and enhance your PD options, it may be time to look at a new digital forum to add to your repertoire of personal or organizational PD options.

Jean Lave, Etienne Wenger and communities of practice Jean Lave Etienne Wenger Communities of Practice (article gratefully downloaded from The idea that learning involves a deepening process of participation in a community of practice has gained significant ground in recent years.

Smith, M. K. (2003, 2009). Communities of practice. In The encyclopedia of informal education. Retrieved from by christamccartney Oct 15

This is the article that started my journey towards understanding the power of social learning and connecting with Etienne and Bev Wenger-Trayner. by nmovall Aug 1

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