In The Learning Landscape, James Anderson outlines a powerful metaphor for visualising learning. Mapping the abstract concept of learning onto a physical journey in the real world, the learning process is made tangible and accessible to learners.

Students will be guided across the plains of the Learning Landscape, passing over the foundational knowledge that has come before them, while overcoming pits of challenging learning in an effort to climb to the peaks of expertise.


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"The Learning Landscape moves with agility through the mountains and valleys of learning using an itinerary of the theories of Dweck's growth mindset, Costa and Kallick's Habits of Mind, Anders Ericson's peak performance, Nottingham's learning pit, and Taleb's antifragility. What is remarkable is how the synthesis of these theories seed some rich and fertile ideas for framing teaching and learning. The ideas are stimulating and the translation to practice is useful immediately. What is most outstanding is the fundamental concept that seeds don't grow without nurturing. It is a call to action!"

Bena Kallick and Art Costa
Co-Founders, Institute of Habits of Mind

"The Learning Landscape is a very effective metaphor that makes the learning process visible and tangible. James Anderson uses metaphors and stories, along with his own very refined personal reflections to bring this book to life. He has mastered the art of making the research practical, really and simple. In particular, the teacher action sections make this book particularly relevant and useful for all educators."

Luke McKenna
Director, Unleashing Personal Potential

"‘The Learning Landscape’ supports improved understanding and enriched practise for educators by placing all these potentially powerful ideas, metaphors and frameworks in appropriate relation to each other. It also explains the importance of being aware of the characteristics of teachers and schools which form the context into which we deploy these methods and resources. Thus, James helps us get closer to realising the potential of these important teaching methodologies."

Alex Delaforce
Head of Teaching and Learning, Coomera Anglican College

In the Learning Landscape, challenges are represented by four different types of Challenge Pits:

  • The Learning Challenge
  • The Performance Challenge
  • The Downhill Challenge
  • The Aspirational Challenge

Only by equipping students with powerful learning tools, such as the Habits of Mind, will they be prepared for the climb out of these Challenge Pits, as their mindsets determine how far they can travel and how high they can climb.

Drawing on the work of Nicholas Nassim Taleb, Art Costa and Bena Kallick, Anders Ericsson, and Carol Dweck, The Learning Landscape provides teachers with a tool to develop learner agency, creating more effective learners, improving engagement and, ultimately, learning outcomes.


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