Monday, December 16, 2013

It's Monday! What are You Reading?

Jen Vincent and Kellee Moye cohost It's Monday! What Are You Reading weekly on their blogs.   To see what others are reading and recommending each Monday, or to participate, be sure to check out their blogs Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers

One of my students recommended Maggie and Oliver or a Bone of One's Own by Valerie Hobbs to me and I am so glad she did! Maggie is an 11 year old orphan who finds herself on the street having to find a way to survive on her own.  Oliver becomes a homeless dog when his owner passes away so he must also find a way to survive out on the streets just like Maggie.  The book tells both Maggie and Oliver's story and connects the two stories at the end.  I read this book in one sitting and loved how it reminded me of Annie too! I highly recommend this book! 

I have been doing a lot of reading and work around the concept of growth mindset vs. fixed mindset for the past couple of years so I was excited to see the new book, Mindsets in the Classroom: Building a Culture of Success and Student Achievement in Schools by Mary Cay Ricci. I started reading this book last week and had time on the train this weekend on my way to NYC to finish it - I loved it! I highly recommend educators to read this professional book and share it with their colleagues.  It would also be a great choice for a faculty book club to read and discuss at faculty meetings.  There are many beneficial strategies, charts, descriptions, quotes, etc. that help educators build a growth mindset culture in their classrooms and schools.

I am very fortunate and grateful that my principal shares professional books and articles from ASCD with me - thank you Grace! The latest book that she let me borrow was The 12 Touchstones of Good Teaching by Bryan Goodwin and Elizabeth Ross Hubbell. This professional book discusses the CCSS, how to use checklists with students and teachers in beneficial ways, how to give feedback that fosters a growth mindset, and how to align the standards to our teaching while challenging students to expect more of themselves in the process.

Some of my favorite lines that I marked with post-its are:

  • "As you develop lessons, you should use standards both as a rearview mirror to look back on the knowledge and skills students should have acquired prior to reaching your classroom and as a windshield to help you anticipate the knowledge and skills teachers in later grades are counting on you to teach your students." (page 12)
  • "Teachers should use standards to structure student learning and the curriculum while using their own creativity to develop lessons and unit plans that are lively, intriguing, and motivating to students. " (page 13)
  • "Teachers can inadvertently diminish student motivation and achievement by praising for ability instead of effort.  That's why it is important to guard against praising for ability and ensure that all comments to students reinforce the importance of their effort and its link to their achievement." (page 96)

Enjoy reading this week! :)

1 comment:

  1. I just put this Maggie and Oliver book in a pile of gift books for my niece. I haven't read it but it looks like she would love it. So thrilled to hear a positive review!