By Irene Sanders
That inevitable time of year has come again: school bells begin to ring and students start their classes. Between making sure your kids have their new folders and freshly shined shoes, take the time to crack the binding on a fantastic self-published book! BlueInk Review has uncovered several titles that can be invaluable to teachers and parents as they prepare to guide their young charges through the year.
Here’s our list of our favorite education books, sure to inspire, provoke thought and help make this academic year a success for all.
Reading Champs, by Rita M. Wirtz, MA: Written by reading specialist Wirtz, this easy-to-follow guide is intended as a supplement for school curricula and reading programs. It offers simple lessons and activities directed towards learning or reviewing reading skills, including sounding out words, comprehension, and sequencing. The book contains 48 instructional or informational charts, including a lesson template, as well as lists of resources and links to many California common core reading websites. In all, this is a valuable resource for anyone tasked with helping students improve their reading. Read review.
Blueprint for a Literate Nation: How You Can Help, by Cinthia Coletti: In addition to sharing her experience as a mother of two bright children who nonetheless struggled with reading in school, the author offers her plan for a grassroots effort to achieve full literacy in our country. As it raises fundamental questions about the state of reading literacy, this eye-opening and practical guide also supplies detailed, elaborate answers. Read Review.
Math Vitamins, by Loretta Jean Everhart: Believing that students are more motivated to learn when math instruction is connected to other subjects and the real world, Math Vitamins is an 8.5 x 11-inch handbook for parents and teachers based on Everhart’s 30-plus years of teaching elementary math. The book contains easily read foundational information and presents a task-analyzed approach to solving word problems. Both parents and teachers will find this book an excellent addition to their instructional library. Read Review.
Authentic Educational Leadership in Schools, by Ross H. Millikan: Written by an Australian educator, this book is a clarion call for a new type of educational leadership in our schools. By focusing on leadership, rather than on the venerable problem-solving or case study methods, Millikan has taken the argument to a new, more useful plane. Not only does he discuss how his Authentic Leader would deal with a number of practical problems within schools themselves, but he also explores the philosophical, moral, and visionary problems that will face his leader. Engagingly written, beautifully structured, and theoretically challenging, it is simply one of the best books on the subject of education available. Read Review.
Behind Success, by Gil Francisco: This eloquent, tender and touching memoir tells of the author’s experiences as a teacher, coach and principal in an urban school. Francisco recalls one student with social deficiencies who becomes a finalist in the Westinghouse Talent Search, contrasted with others who suffer unfair and tragic fates. All of his memories are rendered in often-poetic prose, executed with flair. Read Review.
A Voice for the Children in the Back Row, by Kathleen Robinson: Why do some students gravitate toward the back of the classroom? It may be due to a lack of preparedness, insecurity, or likely, according to Robinson, an overcrowded, test-focused, antiquated educational system. In a short collection of reflective essays from 1956-2006, Robinson shows how students in the back row are often the most needy. Any practicing educator will find a fellow traveler in Robinson and appreciate her tales of marginalized learners. Read Review.
Are You in a Pickle? Lessons Learned Along the Way: Students’ Performance and Achievement Gaps, by Patricia L. Pickles, Ph.D: A former principal and superintendent in Illinois and Texas, Pickles believes that even schools facing serious socio-economic challenges can succeed. Practical, engaging, and student-centered, Pickles’ educational philosophy is coupled with a “call to action” to create effective “platforms” for developing new legislation and enlightened future educational leaders. Her thorough book inspires school districts and professional educators to utilize their full sphere of control for turning schools into “world-class” institutions of excellence. Read Review.
Irene Sanders is a student at the University of Colorado Denver majoring in communications and minoring in business. She is an intern at BlueInk Review.
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