Prompt: What are the best educational books for summer reading?
Ooh. I'll emerge from my not-blogging summer vacation for this one!
One of the best books I've read this far this summer is How We Learn. Benedict Carey, a New York Times science writer, looks at studies of how people learn and retain information. This book has broad implications across education: whether you want your students to memorize their times tables or get a creative insight into a problem, Carey has looked at the relevant research and pulled it together in an easy to read format. What really stuck with me from this book was the idea of percolation: once we seed a problem in our brains, it will continue to subconsciously work on the problem after we have moved on to other tasks. I need to rethink how and when I give my students time to work through more complex work that might benefit from this percolation. Kudos to Greg Garner for this sterling recommendation!
Another book I read recently that came highly recommended - this time by Matt Vaudrey and John Stevens - that I really enjoyed was How Google Works by Eric Schmidt and Jonathan Rosenberg. The glimpse into Google - and the emphasis the authors put on managing smart creatives - was insightful. Though they didn't acknowledge his work, I was reminded often of the ideas Dan Pink lays out in Drive. This book is probably most directly relevant to administrators and district level employees, but as a teacher I really enjoyed it. There were definite crossovers to the classroom for me.
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