Dialogic teaching: towards reconfiguring classroom talk about sexuality

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    Drawing on Robin Alexander’s theory and method of ‘Dialogic Teaching’, this paper engages with debates about the need to reconceptualise the teaching of sexuality education. By exploring the complexities of educating about sex and sexuality it calls for attention to be paid to the how patterns of talk may function to open up spaces for more robust pedagogies. Dialogic Teaching is presented as providing opportunities to mitigate the ideological conflict endemic to sexuality education today. Using examples of classroom conversations between a teacher and his group of students involved in a recent Australian study this paper critically analyzes one teacher’s opportunities (or missed opportunities) for dialogic teaching, including opportunities for students to explore, challenge, reconsider, extend and enhance their learning of the myriad and complex issues relevant to sexuality such as negotiation and consent, pleasure and desire. As a form of pedagogical ethics, dialogic teaching offers a radical model for the future teaching of sexuality education.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)629-645
    Number of pages17
    JournalPedagogy Culture and Society
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 2019


    • classroom talk
    • desire
    • Dialogic teaching
    • pedagogy
    • sexual pleasure
    • sexuality education

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