Studies of classroom communication indicate that certain patterns of interaction – exploratory talk, argumentation and dialogue – promote high-level thinking and intellectual development through their capacity to involve teachers and learners in joint acts of meaning-making and knowledge construction. Applied classroom research in the UK, such as Dawes, Mercer and Wegerif‟s Thinking Together project and Alexander‟s Dialogic Teaching, suggest that dialectical-dialogic pedagogies are beginning to make inroads into traditional patterns of classroom communication in which learners are positioned as compliant supporters of the teacher‟s purpose, their voices barely acknowledged. Yet experience shows that change is slow: patterns of interaction are tied to culture and history and deeply habituated in teachers‟ consciousnesses. Without deeper understanding of these issues and transformation of the conditions and contexts in which classroom interactions are embedded, it is difficult to see how change in discourses and practices might be sustained.
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