Jen Vincent at Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee Moye and Ricki Ginsburg at Unleashing Readers 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 head over to these blogs. Some of my very best reading recommendations come from this pathway!
I didn't read any children's books that wowed me this week--I started three that I abandoned. (I guess it could have been me and not the book, so I may give them another chance.) However, I have been reading How Children Succeed by Paul Tough and it is excellent. There are many anecdotes and references throughout the book and I have been actually taking the time to check them out. I had not heard of Angela Lee Duckworth until reading this book and I have a new idol. To see her Tedtalk about grit, click here. It is only six minutes and completely worth every second of that! She has developed a 12 item grit scale that I also recommend taking a look at. I don't know that I do as much as I should to inject the development of grit into the curriculum, instruction and daily lives of the children around me...something to think about for 2014.
I also read Reflections and Confessions of an Educational Leader by Mark Cohan. Mark was my professor and advisor while I completed my Educational Leadership Sixth-Year, and remains my mentor. When he told me that he had published the book he had been working on, I bought it right away. This book is a personal journal, documenting the events of his year as an experienced superintendent, weaving his current personal and professional experiences with his reflections about his career as an educator. The recurring message of "Never underestimate a student. Never assume that we fully understand the potential of any human being, including our students! Never, ever, ever!!" (p.102) reminds me of so many of the in-person and virtual conversations that I have had with other educators about mindset. His stories and reflections remind us all of the power of our words and interactions with young people looking for guidance, support, and validation on their road to citizenship.