Here are some of August’s top new books for educators:
Blending Leadership: Six Simple Beliefs for Leading Online and Off
Stephen J. Valentine, Dr. Reshan Richards, Brad Ovenell-Carter
Blending Leadership provides all school leaders with a unique approach to utilizing technology for more effective learning and leadership. As the online aspects of schools become just as important as their brick-and-mortar counterparts, leaders must be as effective screen-to-screen as they are face-to-face. Drawing from research, experience, and real-world examples, this book explores and unpacks six core beliefs necessary for the blended leader to succeed.
Between email, websites, apps, updates, tweets, attachments, infographics, YouTube, and unceasing notifications, most people are inundated with digital detritus, and they either grow to ignore it or get swept under it. Effective blended leaders see these distractions as spurs to action, models, test cases, remixable commodities, and learning opportunities. Blending Leadership gives you the perspective you need to excel and the knowledge to leverage the tools at your disposal.
Brain research has the power to revolutionize education, but it can be difficult for educators to implement innovative strategies without the proper knowledge or resources. The Education Revolution bridges the gap between neuroscience, psychology, and educational practice. It delivers what educators need: concrete applications of the most current and relevant research that they can use in their classrooms and schools.
Written by Horacio Sanchez, a leading authority on child and adolescent behavior and resiliency, this book shows educators how they can use our growing understanding of brain science to restore students’ desire to learn; improve achievement, behavior and school climate; and revolutionize education.
Emergence and Innovation in Digital Learning: Foundations and Applications
Educational systems worldwide are facing an enormous shift as a result of sociocultural, political, economic, and technological changes. The technologies and practices that have developed over the last decade have been heralded as opportunities to transform both online and traditional education systems. While proponents of these new ideas often postulate that they have the potential to address the educational problems facing both students and institutions and that they could provide an opportunity to rethink the ways that education is organized and enacted, there is little evidence of emerging technologies and practices in use in online education. Because researchers and practitioners interested in these possibilities often reside in various disciplines and academic departments the sharing and dissemination of their work across often rigid boundaries is a formidable task.
Contributors to Emergence and Innovation in Digital Learning include individuals who are shaping the future of online learning with their innovative applications and investigations on the impact of issues such as openness, analytics, MOOCs, and social media. Building on work first published in Emerging Technologies in Distance Education, the contributors to this collection harness the dispersed knowledge in online education to provide a one-stop locale for work on emergent approaches in the field. Their conclusions will influence the adoption and success of these approaches to education and will enable researchers and practitioners to conceptualize, critique, and enhance their understanding of the foundations and applications of new technologies.
Safe Is Not Enough: Better Schools for LGBTQ Students
Safe Is Not Enough illustrates how educators can support the positive development of LGBTQ students in a comprehensive way so as to create truly inclusive school communities. Using examples from classrooms, schools, and districts across the country, Michael Sadowski identifies emerging practices such as creating an LGBTQ-inclusive curriculum; fostering a whole-school climate that is supportive of LGBTQ students; providing adults who can act as mentors and role models; and initiating effective family and community outreach programs.
While progress on LGBTQ issues in schools remains slow, in many parts of the country schools have begun making strides toward becoming safer, more welcoming places for LGBTQ students. Schools typically achieve this by revising antibullying policies and establishing GSAs (gay-straight student alliances). But it takes more than a deficit-based approach for schools to become places where LGBTQ students can fulfill their potential. In Safe Is Not Enough, Michael Sadowski highlights how educators can make their schools more supportive of LGBTQ students’ positive development and academic success.
Seven Steps to Effective Online Teaching
Diane K. Kovacs
Experienced online teacher Kovacs shares the steps that go into developing effective online instruction. Taking readers through the process from beginning to end while thoroughly discussing the learning theories and research results behind each step, Kovacs
- Shows how to select and apply appropriate learning principles and theories in designing online teaching and learning
- Highlights specific information literacy skills that can be integrated into instructional sequences
- Demonstrates how to conduct a learner needs assessment
- Reviews instructional tools for distance education/web-based tutorials, courses, or workshops, and advises how to select the best one for the job at hand
- Includes case studies collected from working librarians and librarian trainers to illustrate instructional strategies in the library context
With the step-by-step guidance provided in this book, readers can formulate and provide effective online teaching as well as undertake ongoing evaluation.
A principal’s job is complex. Competing demands can be overwhelming, especially in the first few years. Author and principal Jen Schwanke provides guidance to steer new principals through the period of adjustment and set the foundation for a long and rewarding career. Drawing on her own experience, Schwanke provides strategies for tackling a host of challenges, including
- Building a positive school culture
- Managing conflict among staff and parents
- Providing effective instructional leadership
- Supporting students’ social-emotional needs
- Conducting staff evaluations
- Keeping up with state and federal mandates
- Providing professional development
- Managing the facility and the budget
- Approaching student and schoolwide data
- Planning for future growth and change
- Working through behavior and discipline issues
This book is a source for ideas any time you encounter a problem and think, “Now what?” Along with real-life scenarios and critical tips for success, you’ll find helpful models of what to do, what to say, and how to say it.