New Books

New Books

Recommended reading for district leaders.
 

PERSONAL LEARNING NETWORKS: Using the Power of Connections to Enhance Education

JOSSEY-BASS, $24.95

Co-authors Will Richardson (a columnist for this magazine) and Rob Mancabelli present this exploration of what they term Personal Learning Networks (PLNs): the interwoven webs of people, information and resources that 21st-century technology allows anyone to create and learn from. Since students and teachers alike can create, share and collaborate online with others anywhere, at any time, and about any topic, Richardson and Mancabelli describe how the implications for teaching and learning include both exciting possibilities and formidable challenges. The authors argue that schools must "plug in" to this networked world, both to stay relevant and to adequately prepare students for a changing educational and vocational landscape.

 

THE BRAIN AND STRENGTHS BASED SCHOOL LEADERSHIP

CORWIN, $33.95

Authors Sheryl Feinstein and Robert W. Kiner explore four main leadership styles: executing, relationship building, influencing and strategic thinking. The authors then outline ways in which school leaders can capitalize on each style to build a positive school culture, mentor and supervise teachers, foster community partnerships, and connect current cognitive research to the practical challenges of education leadership. The book also includes an introduction by accomplished Montgomery County (Md.) Public Schools Superintendent Jerry Weast.

 

THE UNSCHOOLED MIND: How Children Think and How Schools Should Teach

BASIC BOOKS, $17.99

The twentieth anniversary edition of Howard Gardner's examination of the theory of multiple intelligences and its implications for schools includes a new introduction by the author, reflecting on the impact of his work. A professor of cognition and education at Harvard University who first presented the theory of multiple intelligences in his 1983 book "Frames of Mind," Gardner draws on research in the fields of cognitive science and psychology both to illustrate the shortcomings of conventional education models and to make the case for restructuring school systems to better suit students' natural learning patterns.

 

EVERY CHILD, EVERY CLASSROOM, EVERY DAY: School Leaders Who Are Making Equity a Reality

JOSSEY-BASS/AASA, $30

Robert S. Peterkin and Deborah Jewell-Sherman, co-directors of the Harvard Urban Superintendents' Program (USP), have edited this collection of reallife profiles and chapters exploring the issues facing urban superintendents. Specifically, the book provides examples of the USP's Leadership Framework in action, which is a comprehensive approach developed at Harvard for managing and leading systemwide improvement efforts in an urban setting. Topics include how to effectively communicate a vision, strategically plan for the future, institute real instructional reform, engage the community and effectively allocate resources. Urban superintendents profiled include Beverly Hall, Rudy Crew, Arlene Ackerman and Chris Steinhauser, among others.

 

HOMELESSNESS COMES TO SCHOOL

CORWIN, $38.95

School-aged children of homeless families and homeless independent youth constitute the fastest-growing homeless population in America today. Co-authors Joseph Murphy and Kerry Tobin explore the plight of these children, the legal concerns involved for schools dealing with this issue and the role educators can play in the lives and education of homeless students. The book also includes intervention strategies, instructional guidelines, outlines of effective programs and recommendations for getting schools, parents and community agencies to work together for the benefit of homeless students.


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