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Outside the Classroom

May’s Top Books on Education: See What’s Coming Out This Month!

Each month, hundreds of new books for educators are released, so finding the best ones can be difficult. To better help you, your students, and your coworkers, we’ve put together a list of May’s top books on education. Covering topics such as strengthening student engagement with inclusive teaching strategies, challenging girls to take on proactive roles in STEM education, and practicing positive mindsets for both students and educators, these books are full of great information to help you better serve your students and do your job. Check out what we picked for you this month!

"Venture Girls" book cover

VentureGirls: Raising Girls to Be Tomorrow’s Leaders
Cristal Glangchai

From an engineer and entrepreneur, a conversation-changing parenting book about how to engage young women in science, technology, engineering, and math, filled with practical advice for both parents and educators.

As the female CEO of a tech startup, Dr. Cristal Glangchai was outnumbered twenty to one. At Google, Twitter, and Facebook, women currently fill just ten to twenty percent of technical jobs. While career opportunities in science, technology, engineering, and math have increased dramatically in the past twenty years, the achievement gap between men and women has only grown wider.

In VentureGirls, Glangchai offers a unique solution based on her own experience as an engineer and entrepreneur as well as the founder of the VentureLab, an academy of entrepreneurship and technology for girls. Practical, accessible, and filled with success stories, VentureGirls argues that a key part of raising strong, confident young women is giving them the tools of entrepreneurship to engage in STEM.

Entrepreneurship isn’t just about starting companies, Glangchai writes, it is a skillset and a way of thinking that is particularly useful in the fields of science, mathematics, engineering, and technology. Entrepreneurship involves identifying needs, brainstorming creative solutions, innovating, and taking calculated risks. In short, it’s about having a vision and making it a reality. The true value in learning and practicing entrepreneurship, Glangchai argues, lies in nurturing and growing an overall mindset—the ability to learn from failure and to work well with others to bring your ideas to life.

Deeply informative, warm, and grounded in real-world experience, VentureGirls includes a plethora of activities and lessons that focus on strengthening kids’ ingenuity and resilience. VentureGirls is essential reading for anyone who wants to raise girls and young women who realize their strength, engage in the world, and feel empowered to make a positive impact.

"Onward" book cover

Onward: Cultivating Emotional Resilience in Educators
Elena Aguilar

A practical framework to avoid burnout and keep great teachers teaching

Onward tackles the problem of educator stress, and provides a practical framework for taking the burnout out of teaching. Stress is part of the job, but when 70 percent of teachers quit within their first five years because the stress is making them physically and mentally ill, things have gone too far. Unsurprisingly, these effects are highest in difficult-to-fill positions such as math, science, and foreign languages, and in urban areas and secondary classrooms—places where we need our teachers to be especially motivated and engaged. This book offers a path to resiliency to help teachers weather the storms and bounce back—and work toward banishing the rain for good.

This actionable framework gives you concrete steps toward rediscovering yourself, your energy, and your passion for teaching. You’ll learn how a simple shift in mindset can affect your outlook, and how taking care of yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally is one of the most important things you can do. The companion workbook helps you put the framework into action, streamlining your way toward renewal and strength.

  • Cultivate resilience with a four-part framework based on 12 key habits
  • Uncover your true self, understand emotions, and use your energy where it counts
  • Adopt a mindful, story-telling approach to communication and community building
  • Keep learning, playing, and creating to create an environment of collective celebration

By cultivating resilience in schools, we help ensure that we are working in, teaching in, and leading organizations where every child thrives, and where the potential of every child is recognized and nurtured. Onward provides a step-by-step plan for reigniting that spark.

"In Other Words: Phrases for Growth Mindset" book cover

In Other Words: Phrases for Growth Mindset: A Teacher’s Guide to Empowering Students through Effective Praise and Feedback
Annie Brock, Heather Hundley

Infuse the powerful vocabulary of growth mindset into your lesson plans, feedback and student guidance

From the authors of the bestselling The Growth Mindset Coach, this pocket-sized, companion book is a must-have for any teacher looking to create empowering messaging in the classroom. It offers tips and tricks for meaningful discussions and ready-to-use phrases for students, parents or colleagues.

Instead of saying, “you must be really smart at this,” say, “you must have worked really hard.” Instead of saying, “you were naughty,” say, “that was a bad choice, what will you do differently in the future?” Instead of saying, “you’re a natural at math,” say, “these problems didn’t challenge you very much so let’s move onto something that will really stretch your brain.” Learn all of this and more using this clear and straightforward guide to implementing the most powerful Growth Mindset phrases in your classroom.

"It's More Than 'Just Being In'" book cover

It’s More Than “Just Being In”: Creating Authentic Inclusion for Students with Complex Support Needs
Cheryl M. Jorgensen, Paula Kluth, Dan Habib

For students with disabilities, including those with complex support needs, inclusion means more than just physical presence in a classroom—it means valued membership and full participation in a general education classroom and the school community. This book is your school team’s practical blueprint for making authentic inclusion happen in K–12 classrooms.

Taking the stress and uncertainty out of inclusion, top expert Cheryl M. Jorgensen guides you step by step through her accessible approach to creating inclusive learning environments for students with autism, Down syndrome, intellectual disability, and multiple disabilities. You’ll get a clear rationale for meaningful inclusion and learn how to use strengths-based, person-centered planning to meet the needs of each individual student. Concrete, research-based examples show you what successful inclusion looks like, and ready-to-use strategies help you implement each stage of inclusion, from presuming competence to supporting the transition to adult life.

Especially helpful for new teachers—but a great source of real-world ideas for any educator or parent—this essential guidebook will help your school team develop fully inclusive classrooms where every student learns and thrives.

Discover how to…

  • presume and construct all students’ competence
  • develop supports to promote participation and learning
  • write inclusive, standards-based IEPs
  • collaborate with all IEP team members
  • promote friendships and social connections
  • assess academic progress
  • help students transition to the next grade
  • support students as they plan for life after high school
  • overcome common challenges to inclusion

"Personalized Learning" book cover

Personalized Learning in a PLC at Work: Student Agency Through the Four Critical Questions
Timothy S. Stuart, ‎Sascha Heckmann, ‎Mike Mattos, ‎Austin Buffum

Develop innovative PLC- and RTI-based personalized learning programs

Innovative schools share two common elements: they operate as high-functioning professional learning communities with well-implemented RTI structures, and they have mutual partnerships with students in the learning process. Rely on this resource to help build a learning-progressive school by implementing the foundational elements of PLC, developing an effective system of interventions, and designing a personalized learning program that attains high levels of learning for all.

Use this book to create student-centered learning pathways that drive authentic learning and achievement:

  • Discover how to use the four critical questions of a PLC to form programs for personalized learning in the classroom.
  • Begin the inquiry process through the use of personal reflections provided at the conclusion of each chapter.
  • Understand how the school system has changed over the years and why it is important to address these changes.
  • Explore innovative teaching methods and curriculum-development strategies for achieving different learning outcomes.
  • Learn how schools all over the world have successfully implemented personalized and self-directed learning.

Did you miss last month’s recommendations? It’s not too late to see April’s top books on education.

About the Author


Sasha Wordlaw

Sasha joined Edgenuity in 2015 as a Success Coach where she helped teachers and students achieve success through mentorship and assistance with their education platforms. During her tenure, Sasha was thrilled to further expand her experience with the marketing team, helping to inform people about the latest in edtech and education. As the oldest child in her family and a mother to one, Sasha has been dedicated to enriching the minds of children for most of her life. Her love for education combined with studies in theatre and film led her to teach children’s theatre for 3 years before working in special education with Scottsdale Unified School District in Arizona. Sasha continues her devotion to the arts within the Phoenix theatre community, working on stage and behind-the-scenes. A proud Nashville, TN native, Sasha and her son now call Arizona home.