Edgar Guest was a popular American poet in the first half of the 20th century. His poetry was known for its sentimental and optimistic tone. Guest created over 11,000 poems, which were syndicated in some 300 newspapers. He was awarded the honor of being named the first Poet Laureate of Michigan. Making a House a Home is a wonderful little book, which begins "We have been building a home for the last fifteen years, but it begins to look now as though it will not be finished for many years to come. This is not because the contractors are slow, or the materials scarce, or because we keep changing our minds. Rather it is because it takes years to build a home, whereas a house can be builded in a few months."
The book discusses the idea of the learning community as a vehicle for professional learning and school development.
As the authors show, the learning community develops in response to building capacity in three domains: personal, interpersonal and organizational. In the personal domain, educators deconstruct and reconstruct their professional narratives to enhance student learning and professional practice. In the interpersonal domain, educators generate norms and values that foster experimentation and critical analysis of educational practice and that promote collective and individual learning. In the organizational domain, visible and invisible structures are constructed that enable community members to enact educational practices in support of profound improvement in teaching and learning. This revised and updated edition of Profound Improvement not only brings this important work up-to-date but also shows how the authors thinking has changed and developed since the book was originally written.
The book focuses on the life of educators as it relates to professional learning and growth. It is concerned with human growth and development, human cognition and affect and human interactions and actions in the context of a school community.
For the new edition the authors also:
They show that building a learning community is a dynamic process that engages the individual, the group and the organization in embedded interdependencies and mutual influences. As the authors clearly demonstrate: education is a living system as opposed to a managed system.
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