To order any of the books listed below, simply click on the book cover image in the left column.
Appreciative Inquiry: A Positive Approach to Building Cooperative Capacity
Coherence: The Right Drivers in Action for Schools, Districts, and Systems
Complex times call for clear solutions—If initiative overload and fragmentation are keeping your best plans from becoming reality, it’s time to start leading differently. The key to bringing about the kind of successful and sustainable change you need is the Coherence Framework, a dynamic, customizable road map made up of four essential components:
- Focused direction to build collective purpose
- Cultivating collaborative cultures while clarifying individual and team roles
- Deepening learning to accelerate improvement and foster innovation
- Securing accountability from the inside out
Coherence provides the insights and tools to drive effective leadership. Now you can gain a deeper understanding of Coherence with The Taking Action Guide to Building Coherence in Schools, Districts, and Systems.
Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People Who Will Change the World
In this groundbreaking book, education expert Tony Wagner provides a powerful rationale for developing an innovation-driven economy. He explores what parents, teachers, and employers must do to develop the capacities of young people to become innovators. In profiling compelling young American innovators such as Kirk Phelps, product manager for Apple’s first iPhone, and Jodie Wu, who founded a company that builds bicycle-powered maize shellers in Tanzania, Wagner reveals how the adults in their lives nurtured their creativity and sparked their imaginations, while teaching them to learn from failures and persevere. Wagner identifies a pattern—a childhood of creative play leads to deep-seated interests, which in adolescence and adulthood blossom into a deeper purpose for career and life goals. Play, passion, and purpose: These are the forces that drive young innovators.
Wagner shows how we can apply this knowledge as educators and what parents can do to compensate for poor schooling. He takes readers into the most forward-thinking schools, colleges, and workplaces in the country, where teachers and employers are developing cultures of innovation based on collaboration, interdisciplinary problem-solving, and intrinsic motivation. The result is a timely, provocative, and inspiring manifesto that will change how we look at our schools and workplaces, and provide us with a road map for creating the change makers of tomorrow.
Deep Learning: Engage the World, Change the World
Distributed Leadership in Schools: A Practical Guide to Learning and Improvement
Eight Myths of Student Disengagement: Creating Classrooms of Deep Learning
Education expert Jennifer Fredricks empowers teachers to reengage students at all levels with clear-eyed implementation strategies that build essential 21st century learning skills. Teachers learn to confidently:
- Identify students most at risk for disengagement
- Implement student-centered, project-based learning practices for maximum educational outcomes
- Work effectively with diverse groups of disengaged youth
- Build positive peer cultures and high-quality student-teacher relationships
Straightforward how-to’s from practicing classroom teachers, print and web-based resources, and assessment tips help educators cultivate lasting student engagement and transform educational outcomes with this must-have resource!
Leading for Learning: How to Transform Schools into Learning Organizations
Written by acclaimed school reform advocate Phillip C. Schlechty, Leading for Learning offers educators the framework, tools, and processes they need to transform their schools from bureaucracies into dynamic learning organizations. Schlechty explains how to move beyond some of the deeply ingrained and negative conceptions of schooling that guide so much of their practice. He shows educators how they can take advantage of new learning technologies by increasing their organization’s capacity to support continuous innovation.
Leading with Questions: How Leaders Find the Right Solutions by Knowing What to Ask
Many leaders are unaware of the amazing power of questions. Our conversations may be full of requests and demands, but all too often we are not asking for honest and informative answers, and we don’t know how to listen effectively to responses. When leaders start encouraging questions from their teams, however, they begin to see amazing results. Knowing the right questions to ask—and the right way to listen—will give any leader the skills to perform well in any situation, effectively communicate a vision to the team, and achieve lasting success across the organization.
Thoroughly revised and updated, Leading with Questions will help you encourage participation and teamwork, foster outside-the-box thinking, empower others, build relationships with customers, solve problems, and more. Michael Marquardt reveals how to determine which questions will lead to solutions to even the most challenging issues. He outlines specific techniques of active listening and follow-up, and helps you understand how questions can improve the way you work with individuals, teams, and organizations.
This new edition of Leading with Questions draws on interviews with thirty leaders, including eight whose stories are new to this edition. These interviews tell stories from a range of countries, including Singapore, Guyana, Korea, and Switzerland, and feature case studies from prominent firms such as DuPont, Alcoa, Novartis, and Cargill. A new chapter on problem-solving will help you apply questions to your toughest situations as a leader, and a new “Questions for Reflection” section at the end of each chapter will help you bring Marquardt’s message into all of your work as a leader.
Now more than ever, Leading with Questions is the definitive guide for becoming a stronger leader by identifying—and asking—the right questions
Making Teachers Better not Bitter: Balancing Evaluation, Supervision, and Reflection for Professional Growth
In too many districts, evaluation of teachers ensures competence but does little or nothing to encourage and support expertise. In this thought-provoking and groundbreaking book, Tony Frontier and Paul Mielke address this issue head-on, combining the conceptual and the practical by offering a compelling vision of teacher growth, along with nearly three dozen step-by-step protocols for working with teachers. They present a powerful rationale for reconceptualizing teacher evaluation by creating a balanced system of three equally important components:
- Reliable and valid evaluation.
- Empowering and focused supervision.
- Meaningful and purposeful reflection.
Each component is discussed in terms of its purpose, premise, processes, practices, and payoffs. Revealing examples based on the authors’ experiences in classrooms across the country show what evaluation, supervision, and reflection look like when they’re not done well—and what they could look like if done more effectively.
Providing insight and inspiration, Making Teachers Better, Not Bitter paves a clear path to better teaching and helps you acknowledge and support the hard work that teachers do every day to make learning come alive for their students.
Mindset: The New Pychology of Success
Mindsets in the Classroom: Building a Growth Mindset Learning Community
When students believe that dedication and hard work can change their performance in school, they grow to become resilient, successful students. Inspired by the popular mindset idea that hard work and effort can lead to success, this updated edition of Mindsets in the Classroom provides educators with ideas for ways to build a growth mindset school culture, wherein students are challenged to change their thinking about their abilities and potential.
The book includes a planning template, a step-by-step description of a growth mindset culture, and Look Fors for adopting a differentiated, responsive instruction model teachers can use immediately in their classrooms. It also highlights the importance of critical thinking and teaching students to learn from failure. The four most important components of a growth mindset learning environment are also presented. The book includes a sample professional development plan and ideas for communicating the mindset concept to parents. This updated edition also presents ways to build the concept of “grit” and includes application to Makerspaces, instructional coaching, grading, and more! With this book’s easy-to-follow advice, tasks, and strategies, teachers can grow a love of learning in their students.
Rising Strong: How the Ability to Reset Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead
Social scientist Brené Brown has ignited a global conversation on courage, vulnerability, shame, and worthiness. Her pioneering work uncovered a profound truth: Vulnerability—the willingness to show up and be seen with no guarantee of outcome—is the only path to more love, belonging, creativity, and joy. But living a brave life is not always easy: We are, inevitably, going to stumble and fall.
It is the rise from falling that Brown takes as her subject in Rising Strong. As a grounded theory researcher, Brown has listened as a range of people—from leaders in Fortune 500 companies and the military to artists, couples in long-term relationships, teachers, and parents—shared their stories of being brave, falling, and getting back up. She asked herself, What do these people with strong and loving relationships, leaders nurturing creativity, artists pushing innovation, and clergy walking with people through faith and mystery have in common? The answer was clear: They recognize the power of emotion and they’re not afraid to lean in to discomfort.
Walking into our stories of hurt can feel dangerous. But the process of regaining our footing in the midst of struggle is where our courage is tested and our values are forged. Our stories of struggle can be big ones, like the loss of a job or the end of a relationship, or smaller ones, like a conflict with a friend or colleague. Regardless of magnitude or circumstance, the rising strong process is the same: We reckon with our emotions and get curious about what we’re feeling; we rumble with our stories until we get to a place of truth; and we live this process, every day, until it becomes a practice and creates nothing short of a revolution in our lives. Rising strong after a fall is how we cultivate wholeheartedness. It’s the process, Brown writes, that teaches us the most about who we are.
So Much Reform So Little Change: The Persistence of Failure in Urban Schools and The Prize: Who’s in Charge of America’s Schools
This frank and courageous book explores the persistence of failure in today’s urban schools. At its heart is the argument that most education policy discussions are disconnected from the daily realities of urban schools, especially those in poor and beleaguered neighborhoods. Charles M. Payne argues that we have failed to account fully for the weakness of the social infrastructure and the often dysfunctional organizational environments of urban schools and school systems. The result is that liberals and conservatives alike have spent a great deal of time pursuing questions of limited practical value in the effort to improve city schools.Payne carefully delineates these stubborn and intertwined sources of failure in urban school reform efforts of the past two decades. Yet while his book is unsparing in its exploration of the troubled recent history of urban school reform, Payne also describes himself as “guardedly optimistic.” He describes how, in the last decade, we have developed real insights into the roots of school failure, and into how some individual schools manage to improve. He also examines recent progress in understanding how particular urban districts have established successful reforms on a larger scale.Drawing on a striking array of sources from the recent history of various urban school systems, to the growing sophistication of education research, to his own experience as a teacher, scholar, and participant in reform efforts, Payne paints a vivid and unmistakably realistic portrait of urban schools and reforms of the past few decades. So Much Reform, So Little Change will be required reading for everyone interested in the plight – and the future – of urban schools.
Tell Me So I Can Hear You: A Developmental Approach to Feedback for Educators
In Tell Me So I Can Hear You, Eleanor Drago-Severson and Jessica Blum-DeStefano show how education leaders can learn to deliver feedback in a way that strengthens relationships as well as performance and builds the capacity for growth. Drawing on constructive-developmental theory, the authors describe four stages of adult growth and development and explain how to differentiate feedback for colleagues with different “ways of knowing,” which include:
- Instrumental knowers, who tend to see things in black and white (“Did I do it right or wrong?”) and may need to develop the capacity for reflection.
- Socializing knowers, who are concerned with maintaining relationships (“What do you want me to do?”) and may need support developing their own ideas.
- Self-authoring knowers, who have strong ideologies and values (“How does this fit with my goals and vision?”) and may need help with perspective taking.
- Self-transformative knowers, who are able to examine issues from multiple points of view (“How can I understand this more deeply?”) and may need guidance in resolving tensions and contradictions.
The authors show how leaders can provide feedback in ways that “meet people where they are” while expanding the developmental capacities educators bring to their work. Drago-Severson and Blum-DeStefano provide real-life examples with practical strategies for creating a safe space for feedback, finding the right words, and bridging feedback and action. Tell Me So I Can Hear You offers invaluable guidance to help educators support a culture of learning in classrooms, schools, and districts.
The Allure of Order: High Hopes, Dashed Expectations, and the Troubled Quest to Remake American Schooling
Ted Kennedy and George W. Bush agreed on little, but united behind the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). Passed in late 2001, it was hailed as a dramatic new departure in school reform. It would make the states set high standards, measure student progress, and hold failing schools accountable.
A decade later, NCLB has been repudiated on both sides of the aisle. According to Jal Mehta, we should have seen it coming. Far from new, it was the same approach to school reform that Americans have tried before.
In The Allure of Order, Mehta recounts a century of attempts at revitalizing public education, and puts forward a truly new agenda to reach this elusive goal. Not once, not twice, but three separate times-in the Progressive Era, the 1960s and ’70s, and NCLB-reformers have hit upon the same idea for
remaking schools. Over and over again, outsiders have been fascinated by the promise of scientific management and have attempted to apply principles of rational administration from above. Each of these movements started with high hopes and ambitious promises, but each gradually discovered that
schooling is not easy to “order” from afar: policymakers are too far from schools to know what they need; teachers are resistant to top-down mandates; and the practice of good teaching is too complex for simple external standardization.
The larger problem, Mehta argues, is that reformers have it backwards: they are trying to do on the back-end, through external accountability, what they should have done on the front-end: build a strong, skilled and expert profession. Our current pattern is to draw less than our most talented
people into teaching, equip them with little relevant knowledge, train them minimally, put them in a weak welfare state, and then hold them accountable when they predictably do not achieve what we seek. What we want, Mehta argues, is the opposite approach which characterizes top-performing
educational nations: attract strong candidates into teaching, develop relevant and usable knowledge, train teachers extensively in that knowledge, and support these efforts through a strong welfare state.
The Allure of Order boldly challenges conventional wisdom with a sweeping, empirically rich account of the last century of education reform, and offers a new path forward for the century to come.
The Culture Code: The Secrets of Highly Successful Groups
THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER‘A marvel of insight and practicality’ Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit. How do you build and sustain a great team? The Culture Code reveals the secrets of some of the best teams in the world – from Pixar to Google to US Navy SEALs – explaining the three skills such groups have mastered in order to generate trust and a willingness to collaborate. Combining cutting-edge science, on-the-ground insight and practical ideas for action, it offers a roadmap for creating an environment where innovation flourishes, problems get solved, and expectations are exceeded.
The Curious Classroom: 10 Structures for Teaching with Student-Directed Inquiry
Curious about inquiry? Hundreds of thousands of elementary teachers are. Smokey Daniels travels the country supporting well planned and organized inquiry teaching, and he gets these two questions most often:
- Where do I find the time?
- What are some simple ways I can try with my kids?
The Curious Classroom answers these questions. It shares a ladder of 10 inquiry structures. Begin with briefly modeling your own curiosity or start on a higher rung as you gradually move toward units driven by kids’ own questions.
Ever wonder how to get students genuinely engaged in your curriculum? Or wish you could let them explore those amazing questions they brim with? If so, Smokeyprovides research-based suggestions that help cover the curriculum by connecting what kids wonder about to the wonders you have to teach them. He shares 10 structures, 34 inspiring models from teachers nationwide, full-color photographs and examples of students work, plus specific suggestions for assessment and grading.
The Growth Mindset Playbook: A Teacher’s Guide to Promoting Student Success
An easy-to-implement collection of creative ideas and new strategies that inspire students with the power of growth mindset
Students who harness the power of growth mindset can succeed beyond their wildest imagination. The key is having a growth-mindset teacher who provides support, guidance, and encouragement. Packed with research-based teaching methods, this approachable guide for applying the growth mindset offers:
- Tips for overcoming challenges
- Strategies for inspiring students
- Ideas for constructive feedback
- Techniques for improving communication
- Examples of engaging lesson plans
The follow-up to the bestselling The Growth Mindset Coach, this expert handbook highlights several best practices for helping students realize their potential, explore new opportunities, and succeed socially and academically.
The Power of Collective Wisdom: And the Trap of Collective Folly
Based on nine years of research, The Power of Collective Wisdom shows how we can reliably tap into the extraordinary cocreative potential that exists whenever human beings gather together. Stories and historical examples illustrate how collective wisdom has emerged in a range of cultures, settings, and traditions, and the authors offer a set of practices to help readers realize the key lessons of the book. Equally important, they describe how to recognize the pitfalls of polarization or false agreement that lead to collective folly. Ultimately, this book emerges from a deep conviction that we all have a stake in each other and that what binds us together can be greater than what drives us apart.
The Principal: Three Keys to Maximizing Impact
Principals are often called the second most crucial in-school influencers (after teachers) of student learning. But what should the principal do in order to maximize student achievement? One of the best-known leadership authors in education, Fullan explains why the answer lies neither in micro-managing instruction nor in autonomous entrepreneurialism. He shows systematically how the principal’s role should change, demonstrating how it can be done in short order, at scale.
- Reveals the three key roles that administrators must play in today’s schools
- Explains how to choose the right versus wrong drivers of school success
- Filled with “action items” to help implement Fullan’s program effectively
- Includes strategies that have been successfully field-tested in schools across the United States and Canada