‘Learning and Collective Creativity’ and ‘Learning Teaching from Experience’ now out in paperback
Learning and Collective Creativity: Activity-theoretical and sociocultural studies (Routledge) and Learning Teaching from Experience: Multiple Perspectives and International Contexts (Bloomsbury) are now out in paperback and available at a reasonable prices from all good booksellers. Learning and Collective Creativity was edited with Annalisa Sannino from the University of Helsinki’s CRADLE centre and is the only book currently available to look at the concept of creativity from a mainly activity-theoretical perspective and in multiple domains. My own chapter elaborates the concept of professional creativity from an activity-theoretical perspective and in relation to the teaching profession and distinguishes my idea of professional creativity from previous, more narrowly cognitive and individualistic versions. There are great chapters by Yrjö Engeström and Reijo Miettinen – Engeström’s looks at collective concept formation through a reading of a section of one of the Pippi Longstocking children’s books. It’s one of my favourite Engeström chapters. Miettinen’s is a brilliant exploration of ‘creative encounters’ – when a felt need meets a potentially shareable social object – and an elaboration of collaborative agency. The introduction that Annalisa and I wrote also contains a useful introduction to some of the key terms in activity theory and Vygotskian theory. I will post this section of the introduction in the next few weeks.
Learning Teaching from Experience grew out of a Society for Educational Studies-funded seminar and was co-edited with Janet Orchard (now at the University of Bristol). We took a topical policy problem – the value of experience in learning to become a teacher – and brought together a range of researchers from around the world operating within different traditions of inquiry. The book has a fantastic chapter by Lauren Gatti from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln that draws on her doctoral research into alternative certification teacher education programmes and another by Eli Ottesen from Oslo University that focuses on narratives of experience and the significance of narrative in the professional learning of school leaders. Tom Are Trippestad’s chapter analyses key English policy documents speeches by David Cameron in pursuit of the ‘rhetoric of experience’. Ken Zeichner wrote a brilliant and typically feisty final chapter.
The introduction to Learning Teaching from Experience and my professional creativity chapter from Learning and Collective Creativity are available to download in the Chapter section. This paperback edition of Learning Teaching from Experience has been re-dedicated to Dr Anna Pendry, a former colleague of Janet and myself at Oxford and someone who knows more about learning teaching from experience than anyone we know.