Taking a dialogic approach, this edited book engages in analysis and description of dialogic discourse in a number of different educational contexts, from early childhood to tertiary, with an international team of contributors from Australia, Finland, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. The chapters focus mostly on dialogic face-to-face discourse, with some examples of online interactions, and feature insights from educational linguistics, particularly the work of Michael Halliday.

While the contributors come from a range of theoretical backgrounds, they all share an interest in language in use and engage in close analysis of transcripts of naturally-occurring interaction. Taking inspiration from Alexander and other theorists, they employ a fine-grained and analytic approach to the exploration of their data. The authors make use of the linguistic tools and models of language in society, in order to examine the turn-by-turn unfolding of the interaction. The authors relate their insights from disparate forms of linguistic analysis to elements of Alexander’s (2020) dialogic framework, situating the discourse in its contexts and discussing the pedagogical implications of the linguistic choices at play.

In presenting this work from a range of situations and perspectives, the authors strive to demonstrate how dialogic discourse plays out in educational contexts across the world. The book aims to foster further research in this direction and to inspire educators to explore dialogic discourse for themselves. It will be of interest to a wide audience, including literacy researchers, linguists, teachers and teacher educators, as well as graduate students.

Part 1: Theoretical framework

1. Research into dialogic pedagogy through the lens of educational linguistics

Alyson Simpson, Anne Thwaite and Pauline Jones

2. Classroom discourse analysis

Anne Thwaite

Part 2: Dialogic pedagogy in Early Childhood contexts

3. Perceiving, labelling and knowing: Mediating educational meanings through multimodal dialogue in Montessori early years classrooms

Susan Feez

4. The contribution of ‘sustained shared thinking’ to successful literacy transitions in English curriculum

Pauline Jones and Iram Siraj

5. "We’re going to do it together": Dialogic discourse with young children in Western Australia

Anne Thwaite

Part 3: Dialogic pedagogy in Primary School contexts

6. Dialogicality as embodied multimodal communication in primary schools

Christine Edwards-Groves and Christina Davidson

7. Scaffolding dialogue with marginalised students in the middle years

Helen Harper and Bronwyn Parkin

8. The changing patterns of classroom interaction: Teacher interventions in students’ creative collaboration in makerspaces

Kristiina Kumpulainen, Anu Kajamaa and Jasmiina Leskinen

Part 4: Dialogic pedagogy in Secondary School contexts

9. Writing talk: Investigating metalinguistic dialogue about written texts

Debra Myhill and Ruth Newman

10. Street Smarts: A developing critical thinking talk framework for adolescents

Maree Davies, Simon Esling and Patrick Girard

11. When monologue isn’t: Towards a linguistic description of Alexander’s six principles

Erika Matruglio

Part 5: Dialogic pedagogy in Tertiary Education contexts

12. Dialogic pedagogy: blended learning in initial teacher education

Alyson Simpson and Tinjia Wang

13. A dialogic approach to teacher professional development

Carole Bignell

14. Dialogic dimensions of seminars in higher education

Marion Heron

15. Collaborative knowledge building: the dynamic life of ideas in online discussion forums

Janine Delahunty, Pauline Jones and Irina Verenikina

Part 6

16. Epilogue

Robin J. Alexander