Trusting What You Know: The High Stakes of Classroom Relationships / Edition 1

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Trusting What You Know

School culture shapes and is shaped by the quality of relationships contained within its walls. But how do relationships among students and teachers affect student learning?

Trusting What You Know shows that building genuine trustworthy relationships between teachers and students is pivotal in students' capacity to learn. Based on an extended research study by Miriam Raider-Roth—an educational researcher and former elementary school teacher—Trusting What You Know reveals what students think about their relationships in the classroom and how these relationships shape their ability to learn. The book includes guiding principles for teachers, researchers, educators, and parents who want to understand the ways that human relationships at school fundamentally influence what children learn, know, and trust.

Trusting What You Know introduces us to a small group of sixth-grade students who reveal the complexity and power inherent in the relationships of school. While they talk about many school relationships, they focus mainly on their relationships with their teachers. In these conversations, they describe their keen capacity to see and name both their internal and psychological processes as well as the interpersonal complexities they experience in school.

The book highlights four students—José, Maya, Sharon, Gabe—and their candid interviews reveal the issues central to building trustworthy relationships in school: connection, mutuality, confidence, and meaning-making. The students recount how they construct confidence in themselves, one another, and their teachers in order to support their process of knowing and explain how their everyday classroom interactions can support confidence and instill trust. The students also describe the forces and circumstances that can lead them to disconnect when they feel trust in themselves and others is at risk.

This vital resource shows how important it is to pay attention to relationships in school because relationships form the very foundation of learning.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"a wonderful resource for teachers" (Childhood Education, Summer 2006)

"Miriam Raider-Roth’s Trusting What You Know: The High Stakes of Classroom Relationships is a deeply respectful volume that honors students and their teachers and takes readers below the surface of children’s learning processes to illuminate the high stakes of relationships in schools … [This] is an involving book that leaves one with a profound sense that the ‘relational paradigm in teaching and learning is not simply a ‘nice perk.’ Raider-Roth demonstrates that the development of learning relationships, which allow children to build an authentic sense of themselves as knowers and learners, is fundamental to a quality education for all children." (Harvard Educational Review, Spring 2007)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787971656
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 2/25/2005
  • Series: Jossey-Bass Education Ser.
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 6.12 (w) x 9.22 (h) x 0.93 (d)

Meet the Author

Miriam Raider-Roth is assistant professor of education at the University of Albany, State University of New York. A former elementary school teacher, her research focuses on the relational context of teaching and learning, as well as relational qualitative methodologies.

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Table of Contents

Foreword (Carol Gilligan).


The Author.

Prologue: Peeling an Onion.

Part One: Considering Trust and Relationship.

Introduction: Constructing a Relational.

Landscape of Learning.

1. Trusting Relationships, Trusting What You Know.

Part Two: Listening to the Students.

2. José: “Response Is the Whole Thing”.

3. Maya: Two Shelves for Knowing.

4. Sharon: Constructing Confidence.

5. Gabe: Examining Two Kinds of Body Knowledge.

Part Three: The Relational Context of Learning and Teaching.

6. Who Is Speaking? Deciding Which Truth to Tell.

7. Who Is Listening? Deciding What Knowledge to Share.

8. The Relational Learner: Why Classroom Relationships Matter.

Epilogue: The Heart of the Onion.

Appendix: Listening Closely: Discovery and the Research Relationship.



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