June 13, 2024

Faculty Summer Reading Recommendations

This time of year, schools scramble to select a book for their entire faculty to read over the summer. Although it would be nice if everyone read the same book as a basis for common dialogue and for teachers to read more than one book about learning each year, I just assembled a list for the (DK-8) school where I serve as the Special Assistant to the Head of School for Innovation. Based on our overarching goals of action, reflective practice, progressive education, learning-by-making, energetic classroom centers, creativity, and collegiality, I recommended the following books for this summer. If a school community was to read one book (besides [easyazon_link identifier=”0989151107″ locale=”US” tag=”neweasyazon-20″]Invent To Learn – Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom)[/easyazon_link] , I would recommend David Perkins’ book, [easyazon_link identifier=”0470633719″ locale=”US” tag=”neweasyazon-20″]Making Learning Whole[/easyazon_link].

If you wish to give your faculty (K-12 in any configuration), a list of selections to choose from, I recommend the following in no particular order.
  1. [easyazon_image align=”right” height=”110″ identifier=”0470633719″ locale=”US” src=”http://stager.tv/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/511Ey7168AL.SL110.jpg” tag=”neweasyazon-20″ width=”73″]Perkins, David. (2010) [easyazon_link identifier=”0470633719″ locale=”US” tag=”neweasyazon-20″]Making Learning Whole: How Seven Principles of Teaching Can Transform Education[/easyazon_link]. A clear and concise book on how to teach in a learner-centered fashion. 
  2. [easyazon_image align=”right” height=”110″ identifier=”0807756326″ locale=”US” src=”http://stager.tv/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/51OHkDTXWdL.SL110.jpg” tag=”neweasyazon-20″ width=”77″]Gandini, Lella et al… (2015) [easyazon_link identifier=”0807756326″ locale=”US” tag=”neweasyazon-20″]In the Spirit of the Studio: Learning from the Atelier of Reggio Emilia, Second Edition[/easyazon_link]A beautiful and practical book aimed at early childhood education, but equally applicable at any grade level. 
  3. [easyazon_image align=”right” height=”110″ identifier=”0871209713″ locale=”US” src=”http://stager.tv/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/51g5NUmmDIL.SL110.jpg” tag=”neweasyazon-20″ width=”86″]Littky, Dennis. (2004) [easyazon_link identifier=”0871209713″ locale=”US” tag=”neweasyazon-20″]The Big Picture: Education is Everyone’s Business[/easyazon_link]. Aimed at secondary education, but with powerful ideas applicable at any level. This may be the best book written about high school reform in decades. 
  4. [easyazon_image align=”right” height=”160″ identifier=”0393344266″ locale=”US” src=”http://stager.tv/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/41azzoJvadL.SL160.jpg” tag=”neweasyazon-20″ width=”107″]Tunstall, Tricia. (2013) [easyazon_link identifier=”0393344266″ locale=”US” tag=”neweasyazon-20″]Changing Lives: Gustavo Dudamel, El Sistema, and the Transformative Power of Music[/easyazon_link]. One of the finest books about teaching and learning I’ve read in the past decade. This lessons in this book are applicable across all subject areas. 
  5. [easyazon_image align=”right” height=”160″ identifier=”0465010636″ locale=”US” src=”http://stager.tv/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/51nnrgc3gBL.SL160.jpg” tag=”neweasyazon-20″ width=”113″]Papert, Seymour. (1993) [easyazon_link identifier=”0465010636″ locale=”US” tag=”neweasyazon-20″]The Children’s Machine: Rethinking School in the Age of the Computer[/easyazon_link]. A seminal book that situates the maker movement and coding in a long progressive tradition. This is arguably the most important education book of the past quarter century. 
  6. [easyazon_image align=”right” height=”160″ identifier=”0393246167″ locale=”US” src=”http://stager.tv/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/519AFgdisGL.SL160.jpg” tag=”neweasyazon-20″ width=”105″]Little, Tom and Katherine Ellison. (2015) [easyazon_link identifier=”0393246167″ locale=”US” tag=”neweasyazon-20″]Loving Learning: How Progressive Education Can Save America’s Schools[/easyazon_link]  A spectacular case made for progressive education in the face of the nonsense masquerading as school “reform” these days. 

You could also indulge yourself in the richest professional learning event of your life by participating in Constructing Modern Knowledge 2016. Limited space is still available.

The Best Invention and Tinkering Books, plus other cool stuff – including toys and kits