Category: Book Reviews

An Easy-to-Access Guide to Instruction

With short chapters, graphic organizers, rubrics and acronyms, the strategies in Barbara Blackburn’s updated Classroom Instruction for A to Z are right at the fingertips of busy teachers, ready for trial runs or implementation, says educator Laura Von Staden.

Should Students Have Personal Web Domains?

New teacher Caleb Pahl recommends Audrey Watters’ book about student ownership of domains and online content to district policy makers who make decisions in this arena – and teachers with a specific interest in how “big data” is used by education corporations.

The Art and Practice of Coaching Teams

Elena Aguilar’s “The Art of Coaching Teams ” is a practical resource full of proactive thinking gleaned from 20 years as a teacher and coach, says instructional specialist Deserie Bradvica. For those ready to lead teams with “a focus on trust, clarity and purpose.”

Gaming World Peace with Middle Graders

Teacher John Hunter’s book reveals the intricacies and impact of his famed (thanks to a top 100 TEDTalk) World Peace Game, a multi-layered challenge where students collaborate to solve 50 complex problems. Kevin Hodgson appreciates Hunter’s openness to inquiry.

A Must-Have Resource for Integrating STEM

In addition to its value to schools and districts, STEM by Design will help classroom teachers make integrated STEM lessons a reality. Its step-by-step approach leaps beyond mere discussion to a real plan of action, says state science coordinator Kathy Renfrew.

Challenging ELA for Gifted 4th Graders

Lindsay Kasten’s literacy based workbook provides teachers of gifted students from third to fifth grade with lessons and activities about Native Americans, inventions, nature, and struggle. Adaptable for all students, says 4th grade teacher Linda Biondi.

Warm Ways to Deepen Historical Thinking

On each page of History Class Revisited, teacher Jody Passanisi reveals a deep knowledge of middle school minds and hearts and offers many engaging strategies to help students on the way from literal to critical thinking about history, says reviewer Sarah Cooper.