Learning by Heart

reviewed by Ellen Foley - 2002

coverTitle: Learning by Heart
Author(s): Roland S. Barth
Publisher: Jossey-Bass Publishers, San Francisco
ISBN: 0787955434, Pages: 224, Year: 2001
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In many parts of his book, Learning by Heart, Roland S. Barth, the founder of the Principalsí Center at Harvard University and a former teacher and principal, writes eloquently about the way schools are and what they might become. He is at his best when describing the complex culture and relationships that exist in schools. He critiques the traditional "knowledge transmission" model of teaching, decries the passivity and compliance it breeds, and speaks candidly about cultures that can be "barren, suspicious and characterized by isolation" (p. 204). He acknowledges the racial and gender issues that plague some faculties, and admits that in some schools change is taboo, excitement about learning is derided, and risk-taking is discouraged. His perceptive description of teacher-principal relationships is informed by his own experience working in schools, including frank and humorous passages revealing his own failings as a "benevolent dictator" administrator. The central premise of the book is that to address these issues school-based educators need to be learners themselves, actively engaged in their... (preview truncated at 150 words.)

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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 104 Number 5, 2002, p. 1022-1024
https://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 10821, Date Accessed: 9/23/2020 12:28:42 PM

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