Reading this book was a joy. As a writer, Claxton is beautifully able to express the whats, whys, and hows of the Learning Power Approach. His argument is urgent but it is expressed with great warmth, making it a compelling read. Claxton's work has just the right mix of accessibility and challenge.
Central to the Learning Power Approach is the belief that it is every teacher's responsibility to nurture the student as learner and to grow learners who are “mind fit”. Learning itself is learnable! I challenge any teacher to read this and not come away questioning their practice and inspired to tweak their classroom spaces, language, and the way they design lessons. Reading this book will help teachers understand more clearly the way “every lesson, every day” gradually shapes the way students see themselves as learners and their understanding of the process of learning itself. This is the beauty of the Learning Power Approach. It is not a programme, not a subject, not an add-on - it is something all teachers can integrate into their practice on a daily basis. Claxton's work helps us notice what lies beneath the surface of our teaching and to attend much more closely to the way we shape dispositions and attitudes to learning. As an ardent inquirer, I found the “Wondering” sections at the end of each chapter particularly stimulating. These wonderings would be a great way to prompt conversation and action among teachers, making it a marvellous text for rich, collaborative conversations across an entire school community.
Claxton often uses the metaphor of a coach to describe the work of teachers using the Learning Power Approach, and there are some fascinating and helpful case studies of such coaches in action throughout the text. After reading this book, I feel as if I have spent time with one of the very best learning coaches there is. I can already envisage The Learning Power Approach, dog-eared and lovingly littered with sticky notes, on my shelf. This book deserves a place in every teacher's collection.