October 2017 Bookshelf
Books 05 October 2017
The Hungry Mind: The Origins of Curiosity in Childhood
The learner-centered movement has a tall order in front of it when it comes to assessing the qualitative metrics so vital to a holistic learning experience. One of those metrics will need to capture the value in cultivating a curious mind. In Susan Engel’s work, The Hungry Mind, readers are taken down the rabbit hole of all things related to curiosity. But, once they come back up for air, they will find themselves holding a well-organized playbook showcasing the abstract components of curiosity in a digestible, action-oriented format that can be put into their learner-centered practice.
When Writers Drive the Workshop: Honoring Young Voices and Bold Choices
Recognizing the lived and living experiences of learners from day one is a vital component to meeting learners where they are. In the traditional system, the standardized curriculum often gets in the way of this self-expression, resulting in learner voices going unheard. Brian Kissel challenges educators, through a redesign of how learners should learn to write, to put the writer’s workshop back in the hands of the writer. In his book, When Writers Drive the Workshop, Kissel provides guiding questions on how educators can engage learners in writing and their overall learning journey.
Whistling Vivaldi: And Other Clues to How Stereotypes Affect Us
Claude M. Steele
Society, on an endless mission to bring order to the chaos of the natural world, can’t help but label everything in its purview. Educators know this reality all too well. But, we can often miss the true impact these labels carry. Claude M. Steele eloquently presents this theme and the negative effects it has on building thriving communities. In his work, Whistling Vivaldi, Steele reminds readers, through hard facts and personal stories, what happens to individuals when we remind them of the labels they carry.
Barking Up the Wrong Tree: The Surprising Science Behind Why Everything You Know About Success is (Mostly) Wrong
Self-help and personal development books are a dime a dozen and have been for many decades. Most preach vague advice from a lens of absolutism or relativism, neither of which hone in on real-world application. That’s why blogger and author, Eric Barker, took it upon himself to write Barking Up the Wrong Tree. Barker’s goal was to test the sage advice from self-help gurus through science-backed data. Wrapping it all up in entertaining anecdotes, Barker provides a new way to think about what it means to be successful.
How to Think: A Survival Guide for a World at Odds
When experiencing life “in the moment,” our assessment of the current situation can be exaggerated due to incomplete information and letting our imaginations run wild. We tend to tell ourselves we have collected all of the information necessary to draw reasonable solutions about whatever seems to be happening all around us. Alan Jacobs wanted to explore this behavior and whether or not it might be fruitful to reset our beliefs about our own reliability. In How to Think, Jacobs argues we aren’t divisive on big issues like politics or religion simply because we carry different views of the world. Rather, we choose not to think—it’s uncomfortable and makes us look into the unfamiliar—so we don’t have to consider there might be multiple paths to the same destination.
The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles
Learner-centered pioneers are on a 24/7 cycle that demands creative solutions over and over again. This endless call to action results in creative blocks that can feel like there is nothing left to try. When the wall goes up, we often find ourselves addressing other to-dos to take our mind off the elephant in the room, what Steven Pressfield calls “The Resistance.” In his book, The War of Art, he invites readers to look at every distraction that screams for attention when you are striving to produce creative work. And, how calling these distractions out by name can help you combat their negative impact on achieving your best work.
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