The Learning Power Approach(9781785832451)

Provider: Crown House Publishing
£18.99 (no VAT on this item)

No reviews yet

Provider Rating No reviews yet
Description Schools have two aims: to help young people develop the skills, knowledge and grades they will need for further study and employment; and to help them cultivate the qualities of mind that will determine – even more than their test scores – how well they will flourish in life more generally. At the moment these two aims are being set in opposition to each other: ‘traditionalists’ fight for rigour and knowledge, while ‘progressives’ want character and well-being. But it is a phoney and unnecessary war – so says Guy Claxton in his provocative new book The Learning Power Approach: Teaching Learners to Teach Themselves.

Crown House Publishing's website
Categories Primary, Secondary, Leadership and Management, Teaching and Learning, Management, Support Staff, Teaching staff, In school
Learning outcomes for participants/users and, where relevant, pupils or students

We know that it is the nitty-gritty of teaching that matters most in schools, but different styles and methods of teaching lead to different outcomes. One style can lead to happy children with poor achievement. Another can get good results but runs the serious risk of creating students who are compliant and dependent. But there is a third that gets good results in a way that also develops independence, initiative, determination and a love of learning. That’s the Holy Grail of Pedagogy. It is what Guy Claxton calls the Learning Power Approach, and it delivers the best of both worlds.

Evidence underpinning this approach

In this ground-breaking book, Guy distils 15 years’ practical experience with his influential Building Learning Power method, as well as findings from a range of kindred approaches, into a set of design principles for teaching. Students are gradually coached to take over responsibility for managing, trouble shooting and evaluating learning for themselves – and are thus better prepared for life after school, whether that be at university or college, or in work. And in school, fitting the learning-power turbo-charger means they learn what they need to know more deeply and more efficiently. Instead of the phoney war we now have a Win-Win way of teaching.

"Dispositions to learning should be key performance indicators of the outcomes of
schooling. Many teachers believe that, if achievement is enhanced, there is a ripple
effect to these dispositions. However such a belief is not defensible. Such dispositions
need planned interventions."

Source: John Hattie, Visible Learning for Teachers (Abingdon: Routledge, 2012), p. 40.

How users/participants can evaluate success

The Learning Power Approach clearly describes in detail the small tweaks to practice that are needed, together with the supportive evidence that underpins them. It carefully lays the ground for a series of books to follow that are tailored to primary teaching, secondary teaching, and school leadership.

Follow-up activities and support

Prof Guy Claxton is Emeritus Professor at Winchester University and Visiting Professor of Education at King’s College London. He has previously taught and researched at Oxford University, Bristol University and the University of London Institute of Education. An internationally renowned cognitive scientist, Guy’s books include Hare Brain, Tortoise Mind; Wise Up: The Challenge of Lifelong Learning; The Wayward Mind; and Intelligence in the Flesh. Recent books in education include What’s the Point of School?; Building Learning Power; and with Bill Lucas and others, New Kinds of Smart, The Learning Powered School; and Educating Ruby. Guy’s Building Learning Power approach to teaching is widely used in all kinds of schools across the UK, as well as in Poland, Dubai, Indonesia, India, China, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, Brazil and Argentina.

Contact Guy at:



Review comments provided include: Kath Murdoch, Steven Farr, Peter Gamwell, James Nottingham, Ken Austin, Tristian Stobie, Sir Tim Brighouse, Peter Hyman, Dame Reena Keeble, Sir Anthony Francis Seldon, Andy Buck, Andrew Morrish and Professor Dame Alison Peacock.