Outside the Classroom

June’s Top 5 Education Book Releases

As we approach the end of the school year, many have been thinking about the coming months and how learning may look different in the fall. Online and distance learning won’t be going away, and some schools are planning for a hybrid approach to learning. For June’s top 5 education book releases, we’ve selected books that can help you plan for another unusual school year, and we included a sixth book this month that can help you prepare for the increased social and emotional needs your students may have in the coming months.

How To Keep Your Kids Learning When Schools Are Closed
Matthew Boulay

How can parents best support, nurture, and educate their children when schools are closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic? While the widespread closure of schools, camps, and summer programs makes sense from a public health standpoint, millions of parents are left feeling alone and overwhelmed.

In When Schools Are Closed, Matthew Boulay suggests strategies and resources to help parents teach, nurture, and support their children during these unprecedented times. Boulay draws on evidence from research; on conversations with parents, educators, and policymakers; and on his own insights as a father, former teacher, military veteran, and decades-long champion of summer learning.

Learning That Sticks: A Brain-Based Model for K-12 Instructional Design and Delivery
Bryan Goodwin, Tonia Gibson, Kristin Rouleau

In far too many classrooms, the emphasis is on instructional strategies that teachers employ rather than on what students should be doing or thinking about as part of their learning. What’s more, students’ minds are something of a mysterious “black box” for most teachers, so when learning breaks down, they’re not sure what went wrong or what to do differently to help students learn.

It doesn’t have to be this way. Learning That Sticks helps you look inside that black box. Bryan Goodwin and his coauthors unpack the cognitive science underlying research-supported learning strategies so you can sequence them into experiences that challenge, inspire, and engage your students. As a result, you’ll learn to teach with more intentionality—understanding not just what to do but also when and why to do it.

By way of an easy-to-use six-phase model of learning, this book:

  • Analyzes how the brain reacts to, stores, and retrieves new information.
  • Helps you “zoom out” to understand the process of learning from beginning to end.
  • Helps you “zoom in” to see what’s going on in students’ minds during each phase.

Learning may be complicated, but learning about learning doesn’t have to be. And to that end, Learning That Sticks helps shine a light into all the black boxes in your classroom and make your practice the most powerful it can be.

Humanizing the Online Classroom: Seeking and Celebrating the Human Experience in Distance Education
Bernard Bull

This book offers practical tips for designing and facilitating online learning that seeks out and celebrates the human experience. Dr. Bernard Bull offers eight shifts in thinking and practice that promise to engage, enrich, and inspire. Discover tips on how to tap into the power of wonder, curiosity, and meaning; invite learners to become co-creators of a vibrant learning community; nurture deep and valued mentoring relationships; and replace a culture of compliance and earning with one of authentic and lasting learning.

Awesome Sauce: Create Videos to Inspire Students, Engage Parents and Save You Time
Josh Stock

The ability to use video to communicate has become a basic element of literacy—inside and outside the classroom. This playful, fun-to-read book by award-winning educator Josh Stock shows educators how to make simple videos that explain assignments, welcome students to new schools and grades, differentiate lessons for a range of learning levels, and more. The book also helps teachers use video to address common issues like enhancing classroom culture and managing parent communication.

Structured like a cookbook, Awesome Sauce discusses both the “why” and the “how” behind the strategies. Each section begins with the story of why Stock uses the strategy, demonstrating what teachers will get out of trying it with their students. These explanations are followed by “how-to” recipes that guide readers in creating the “awesome sauce” their videos will become.

The book:

  • Provides practical ways to create videos for the classroom to boost learning outcomes.
  • Offers a creative and fresh approach to PD with manageable layout and friendly, accessible voice.
  • Offers an accessible solution for all classroom teachers, regardless of tech skills, including basic setups that yield great results.

For the author, it comes down to this: “I want to be the best teacher possible and using these recipes gives me the chance to make the biggest impact possible on the rock star students in my classroom.”

A Quiet Education: Challenging the Extrovert Ideal in our Schools
Jamie Thom

A Quiet Education serves as an unashamed cheerleader for all that is quiet, challenging the myth that collaboration and noise should be at the heart of what happens in schools. It examines how we can ensure more introverted students and teachers can thrive and achieve their potential. It also explores why it is essential that all teachers begin to embrace quieter values: in their classrooms and management of behavior; in sustaining their own well-being; in their desire to reflect meaningfully and improve as a teacher.

The final section is an exploration of quieter skills: how we can strengthen our students’ metacognitive ability; their ability to listen, pay attention, and focus; the quality of independent work we do in the classroom alongside how we can motivate all our students.

For those who want to get a jumpstart on planning for the fall, we also recommend the following book. These past few months have been a challenge for many students, and the information in this book may help prepare you for the road ahead:

Trauma Doesn’t Stop at the School Door: Strategies and Solutions for Educators, PreK–College
Karen Gross

This book explores how educational institutions have failed to recognize and effectively address the symptoms of trauma in students of all ages. Given the prevalence of traumatic events in our world, including the COVID pandemic, Gross argues that it is time for educational institutions and those who work within them to change their approaches and responses to traumatic symptoms that manifest in students in schools and colleges. These changes can alter how and what we teach, how we train teachers, how we structure our calendars and create our schedules, how we address student behavior and disciplinary issues, and how we design our physical space. Drawing on real-life examples and scenarios that will be familiar to educators, this resource provides concrete suggestions to assist institutions in becoming trauma-responsive environments, including replicable macro- and microchanges.

Book Features:

  • Focuses on trauma within the early childhood–adult educational pipeline.
  • Explains how trauma is often cumulative, with recent traumatic events often triggering a revival of traumatic symptomology from decades ago.
  • Provides clarifications of currently used terms and scoring systems and offers new and alternative approaches to identifying and ameliorating trauma.
  • Includes visual images to augment the descriptions in the text.
Did you miss last month’s recommendations? It’s not too late to see May’s top books for educators.

About the Author

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Where Learning Clicks

Since 1998, Edgenuity has been creating products and services that help all students achieve their full potential. As an extension of our efforts, we also produce Where Learning Clicks to share meaningful and timely ideas about trends, developments, and changes in education, as well as how to further incorporate technology into today’s classrooms.