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Learning Stories

Learning Stories
Constructing Learner Identities in Early Education

  • Margaret Carr - Waikato University, New Zealand
  • Wendy Lee - Director of the Educational Leadership Project, New Zealand

June 2012 | 168 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
Margaret Carr's seminal work on Learning Stories was first published by SAGE in 2001, and this widely acclaimed approach to assessment has since gained a huge international following. In this new book, the authors outline the philosophy behind Learning Stories and call on the latest findings from the research projects they have led with teachers on learning dispositions and learning power to argue that Learning Stories can construct learner identities in early childhood settings and schools. By making the connection between sociocultural approaches to pedagogy and assessment and narrative inquiry, this book contextualizes learning stories as a philosophical approach to education, learning and pedagogy.

Chapters explore how Learning Stories:

" help make connections with families;

" support the inclusion of children and family voices;

" tell us stories about babies;

" allow children to dictate their own stories;

" can be used to revisit children's learning journeys;

" can contribute to teaching and learning wisdom.

This ground-breaking book expands on the concept of Learning Stories, and includes examples from practice in both New Zealand and the UK. It outlines the philosophy behind this pedagogical tool for documenting how learning identities are constructed, and shows through research evidence why the early years is such a critical time in the formation of learning dispositions.

Margaret Carr is a Professor of Education at the University of Waikato, New Zealand. Wendy Lee is Director of the Educational Leadership Project, New Zealand.

Learner Identities in the Early Years: An Introduction to Four Themes
Why Story?
Co-Authoring and Dialogue
Making Connections Across Boundaries Between Places
Recognising and Re-Cognising Learning Continuities
Appropriating Knowledges and Learning Dispositions in a Range of Increasingly Complex Ways
Reconceptualising Assessment
Constructing and Sustaining a Passion for Learning

'Margaret Carr and Wendy Lee weave together a powerful book full of respect for children's ideas, interests and identities as learners. Using theoretically informed and practically focused discussion and examples, they provide extensive evidence of the role of narrative assessment as teachers, children and families co-construct stories of competence'
- Sue Dockett, Professor of Early Childhood Education, Murray School of Education, Charles Sturt University

'What a fabulous read! Any practitioner already engaged in collating learning stories or learning journeys as a means of recording children's achievements and progress should absorb this life-enriching read of a beautiful book'
-Early Years Educator

'Illustrated in colour, this is a fascinating and timely book which will make rewarding reading for both experienced practitioners and for students on degree and higher degree level courses. There is much here to think about, reflect upon and discuss as we endevour to equip young children with the skills and dispositions they need to live in a global democratic society'
- Early Years Update

This text offers the students selecting to focus on this aspect of the course some clear ideas on learning stories with practical applications through case study.

Mrs Melanie Mackinder
Early Childhood Studies, Bishop Grosseteste University
October 28, 2016

The photographs in this book really enhance the text and also link it well to practice. The boxes give useful case studies.

Mrs Claire Kathryn Pescott
Early Years and Education, University of South Wales (Glamorgan)
December 1, 2015

Very useful background. Helps student practitioners understand the rationale behind using learning jouneys for their key children.

Ms Kath Tayler
Educatoin, University of Brighton
November 24, 2015

Excellent book that utilized really cases and stories so that students can follow and understand the authors points. Highly recommended

Dr Katherine Cartmell
Education and Early Childhood Studies, Liverpool John Moores University
March 16, 2015

Excellent book that utilized really cases and stories so that students can follow and understand the authors points. Highly recommended.

Dr Katherine Cartmell
Education and Early Childhood Studies, Liverpool John Moores University
March 16, 2015

Will be introducing the concept of Learning Stories to students as an innovative new way to observe children. Fantastic

Mrs Nicola Demetriadi
Childhood Studies : Early Years, Chichester University
August 10, 2015

ESSENTIAL reading for all early years practitioners who are engaged in meaningful assessments of the children in their care. Wonderful colour illustrations that truly support understanding of the rich stories that children bring to their learning experiences. Influences not just our own view but how we influence how others view children. So passionate about the concept of stories and story telling a must for the shelves of any early years practitioner.

Mrs Sharon Colilles
Carnegie Faculty of Sports & Education, Leeds Beckett University
February 4, 2015

Essential for those who follow the comparative element of this module.

Mrs Jan Gourd
Faculty of Education, University of St Mark & St John
December 19, 2014

Margaret Carr & Wendy Lee are an inspiration to practitioners and students alike. The book is a great guide, it outlines the philosophy of learning stories and supports this with examples, colour photographs and research. A great resource and inspiration to develop good practice with practitioners and in settings.

Ms Caroline Brooks
Faculty of Development & Society, Sheffield Hallam University
December 17, 2014

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1

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