Teachers as Designers of Learning Environments

The Importance of Innovative Pedagogies

image of Teachers as Designers of Learning Environments

Pedagogy is at the heart of teaching and learning. Preparing young people to become lifelong learners with a deep knowledge of subject matter and a broad set of social skills requires a better understanding of how pedagogy influences learning. Focusing on pedagogies shifts the perception of teachers from technicians who strive to attain the education goals set by the curriculum to experts in the art and science of teaching. Seen through this lens, innovation in teaching becomes a problem-solving process rooted in teachers’ professionalism, rather than an add-on applied by only some teachers in some schools.

Teachers as Designers of Learning Environments: The Importance of Innovative Pedagogies provides a snapshot of innovative pedagogies used in classrooms around the world. It sets the stage for educators and policy makers to innovate teaching by looking at what is currently taking place in schools as potential seeds for change. At the heart of all of these approaches is a sensitivity to the natural inclinations of learners towards play, creativity, collaboration and inquiry. To illustrate how teachers use these innovative practices, the publication presents examples from 27 national and international networks of schools.

It is now generally acknowledged that the quality of an education system cannot exceed the quality of its teachers. This volume goes a step further to argue that a teacher cannot help students meet new educational challenges by continuing to draw on a limited and perhaps even inherited set of pedagogies. And here lies the genuine importance of innovative pedagogies.



Approaches to innovative pedagogy, teaching and learning

Centre for Educational Research and Innovation

This chapter focuses on the main approaches to teaching and pedagogy, according to the various networks. The analysis in this chapter draws particularly on the “Pedagogical Approach Networks”, for their experiences revolve on common approaches that have already expanded. It follows the structure of the questionnaire, which was designed to engage the different networks. First, it describes the networks main pedagogical approaches and their relation to some fundamentals of learning (as described in previous OECD/CERI work). It also includes how the networks secure learners’ voice and agency. After, the analysis moves to how these pedagogical approaches are suited for specific learners or subjects. Towards the end of the chapter there is discussion on how these identified key practices support the effective implementation of their pedagogical approaches. This discussion is particularly relevant to address one of the dimensions of the conceptual framework of the project, connoisseurship.


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