ISM’s Summer Reading Suggestions 2013

ISM
Vol. 12 No. 4
Students aren’t the only ones who should take advantage of the summer break and dive into a few good books. Blogs across the Web agree it’s the perfect season for both pleasure reading and professional development. Articles have been popping up with suggestions (even Pinterest pages!), so we’ve done a little research and selected a few we think our readers would find most useful for their betterment in the private-independent school world.

21st Century Skills, Learning For Life In Our Times
by Bernie Trilling and Charles Fadel
The content includes the basic core subjects of reading, writing, and arithmetic, but also emphasizes global awareness, financial/economic literacy, and health issues. The skills fall into three categories: learning and innovation skills, digital literacy skills, and life and career skills. This book is filled with vignettes, international examples, and classroom samples that help illustrate the framework and provide an exciting view of 21 century teaching and learning.

Going Google: Powerful Tools for 21st Century Learning
by Jared J. Covilli
The author explores the wide array of Google tools and shows how to use them in the classroom to engage students and foster digital learning.

When Can Your Trust the Experts: How to Tell Good Science from Bad in Education
by Daniel T. Willingham
Each year, teachers, administrators, and parents face a barrage of education software, games, workbooks, and professional development programs purporting to be “based on the latest research.” While some of these products are rooted in solid science, the research behind many others is grossly exaggerated. This book helps everyday teachers, administrators, and family members separate the wheat from the chaff and determine which educational approaches are scientifically supported and worth adopting.

The End of Molasses Classes: Getting Our Kids Unstuck—101 Extraordinary Solutions for Parents and Teachers
by Ron Clark
In his New York Times bestseller The End of Molasses Classes, renowned educator Ron Clark challenged parents, teachers, and communities everywhere to make a real difference in the lives of our kids, offering revolutionary and classroom-tested ways to uplift, educate, and empower our children. Read this book to find out why so many across the country have embraced these powerful rules.

Leadership and the Art of Struggle: How Great Leaders Grow Through Challenge and Adversity
By Steven Snyder
Using real-life stories drawn from his extensive research studying 151 diverse episodes of leadership struggle—as well as from his experiences working with Bill Gates in the early years of Microsoft and as a CEO and executive coach—Snyder shows how to navigate intense challenges to achieve personal growth and organizational success. He details strategies for embracing struggle and offers a host of unique tools and hands-on practices to help you implement them. By mastering the art of struggle, you’ll be better equipped to meet life’s challenges and focus on what matters most.

How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character
by Paul Tough
How Children Succeed introduces us to a new generation of researchers and educators, who, for the first time, are using the tools of science to peel back the mysteries of character. Through their stories—and the stories of the children they are trying to help—Tough reveals how this new knowledge can transform young people’s lives. He uncovers the surprising ways in which parents do—and do not—prepare their children for adulthood. And he provides us with new insights into how to improve the lives of children growing up in poverty. This provocative and profoundly hopeful book will not only inspire and engage readers, it will also change our understanding of childhood itself.

Is College Worth It?: A Former United States Secretary of Education and a Liberal Graduate Expose the Broken Promise of Higher Education
by Dr. William J. Bennett, David Wilezol
For many students, a bachelor’s degree is considered the golden ticket to a more financially and intellectually fulfilling life. But the disturbing reality is that debt, unemployment, and politically charged pseudo learning are more likely outcomes for many college students today than full-time employment and time-honored knowledge. This book uses personal experience, statistical analysis, and real-world interviews to provide answers to some of the most troubling social and economic problems of our time.

Transformative Leadership in Education: Equitable Change in an Uncertain and Complex World
by Carolyn M. Shields
In the volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous world of education today, leaders need to take an engaged, activist, and courageous approach to help build optimistic futures for all students. Transformative Leadership in Education presents an alternative approach to leadership for deep and equitable change. Using vignettes, stories, research, and drawing on scholarship from a range of disciplines, noted scholar Carolyn M. Shields explores the concept of transformative leadership and its potential to create learning environments that are just and inclusive. Drawing on examples from transformative school leaders, Shields demonstrates that this leadership can promote academic achievement, family and community empowerment, democratic engagement, and global citizenship.

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