How is Learning Cultures different than other educational methods?

Traditional 'transmission' education models teach kids through a process of 'telling' and 'testing,' following a prescribed curriculum and a set course of instruction through 'units of study.' Kids either stay on course or fall behind and fail. Learning Cultures breaks with the transmission tradition. The curriculum is built around a set of engaging social practices, called 'formats.' The 'formats' are organized to let students collaborate, cooperate, form relationships, take responsibility for learning, and become independent. They let kids learn to take agency for their education and self-organize.

How is Learning Cultures implemented? 

Learning Cultures is usually implemented one grade or subject at a time in schools where educators want to phase in the model a little bit at a time. But Learning Cultures has also been used as a comprehensive school turnaround model. In schools where educators want a 'whole school' approach, a school culture and character education component developed by Cynthia, called 'Keepers of the Culture,' is used along with the academic formats in order to build a school culture of cooperation and civility. Cynthia McCallister helps schools determine which approach is most appropriate for the needs of the school. Then teachers and former students trained in the methods can come to your school to help you implement the model.

How much does Learning Cultures cost to implement?

Since the Learning Cultures methods teach students to become independent and to use their relationships with others to access information that is freely available to them in order to pursue their own academic goals, the program is very inexpensive to implement. Online courses are available to teachers and students, which can be accompanied by on-site training. Courses can be purchased on this website. Contact to discuss site-based support for your school.

Why is Learning Cultures effective?

Learning Cultures is effective as an educational approach because it creates multiple pathways for students to organize themselves to become successful academically and to improve their sense of well-being. The academic formats provide routines of social interactions that allow kids to form relationships with all their peers. They learn to work out problems, overcome adversity, self-regulate to the thinking and emotional needs and resources of others in order to regulate their own emotions and thinking. Learning Cultures teaches kids to find a sense of purpose in school, to develop self-competence and dignity, and to chart their own destiny. 

How can I learn more?

Click to our Blog page to read stories about Learning Cultures. Go to our Contact page and write to us with your questions. We'll follow up to answer any questions you have.