Outside the Classroom

Top New Books for Educators: See What’s Coming in April

Here are some of the top new books for educators being released in April:

Becoming an Adoption-Friendly School

Becoming an Adoption-Friendly School: A Whole-School Resource for Supporting Children Who Have Experienced Trauma or Loss

Dr. Emma Gore Langton, Katherine Boy

Adopted children who have experienced loss, abuse or neglect need additional support for their emotional development, and are more likely to have special educational needs. This useful resource provides a complete plan for creating adoption-friendly environments in primary, secondary and specialist schools.

The book is grounded on new research which gathered together testimonies from over 400 school staff members, adoptive parents and adoption specialists. With realistic consideration of pressures and limitations currently faced by schools, it gives advice on eight key areas for school development, including communicating with parents, training staff, using resources wisely and recognizing children’s individual needs. Completing the toolkit is a broad selection of photocopiable and downloadable plans for establishing adoption-friendly frameworks, and for demonstrating good practice to staff, pupils, families and school inspectors.


Empowered Educators: How High-Performing Systems Shape Teaching Quality Around the World

Linda Darling-Hammond, Dion Burns, Carol Campbell, A. Lin Goodwin, Karen Hammerness, Ee-Ling Low, Ann McIntyre, Mistilina Sato, Ken Zeichner

Producing highly skilled and committed teachers is not the work of a single innovative school or the aggregation of heroic individuals who succeed against the odds. In high-performing countries, the opportunities for teachers to learn sophisticated practices and continue to improve are embedded systemically in education policies and practices. Empowered Educators describes how this seemingly magical work is done—how a number of forward-thinking educational systems create a coherent set of policies designed to ensure quality teaching in all communities… and how the results are manifested in practice.

Spanning three continents and five countries, Empowered Educators examines seven jurisdictions that have worked to develop comprehensive teaching policy systems: Singapore and Finland, the states of New South Wales and Victoria in Australia, the provinces of Alberta and Ontario in Canada, and the province of Shanghai in China. Renowned education expert Linda Darling-Hammond and a team of esteemed scholars offer lessons learned in a number of areas that shape the teaching force and the work of teachers, shedding unprecedented light on areas such as teacher recruitment, preparation, induction and mentoring, professional learning, career and leadership development, and more.

Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail

Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail: How to Create Your School’s Education Technology Strategic Plan

Darryl Vidal

Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail is a book for Education Technology professionals who understand that Ed Tech projects are complex and costly, and therefore must be planned and managed just like any other large-scale project. Oftentimes Education Technology professionals move straight from naming an initiative, such as “1 to 1 computing, or BYOD” right into implementation, without taking into consideration the necessary infrastructure, bandwidth and capacity. These requirements may double or even quadruple the overall expenditure.

But in recent decades, with the massive call for classroom technology, the large-scale technology programs that have made the news have been huge failures, and have wasted millions of taxpayer dollars, taking some superintendents with them.

What is the key to avoiding these failures, and how can you insure that it doesn’t happen to your school? The key is planning and project management. Education Technology Strategic Planning is the subject of this book. It provides a detailed process, called MAPITTM that guides the planner through five phases for developing your school’s Ed Tech Strategic Plan: Needs Identification, Needs Analysis, Recommendations, Feasibility and Implementation.

Gamify Literacy

Gamify Literacy: Boost Comprehension, Collaboration and Learning

Michele Haiken

Literacy is at the heart of education — and what better way to teach this important subject than through the motivational techniques built into gamification?

With Gamify Literacy, teacher Michele Haiken brings together top educators and gaming professionals to share gamification strategies, demonstrating how teachers can use gaming tools and activities to improve literacy and content learning.

This friendly, accessible guide provides classroom educators and tech coaches with tips and inspiration on how to apply gaming techniques to improve literacy and deepen student collaboration and critical thinking.

Solving the Homework Problem by Flipping the Learning

Solving the Homework Problem by Flipping the Learning

Jon Bergmann

Teachers view homework as an opportunity for students to continue learning after the bell rings. For many students, it’s often just the dreaded “H” word. How can educators change the way students view homework while ensuring that they still benefit from the additional learning it provides? It’s easy. Flip the learning!

In Solving the Homework Problem by Flipping the Learning, Jonathan Bergmann, the co-founder of the flipped learning concept, shows you how. The book outlines:

  • Why traditional homework causes dread and frustration for students.
  • How flipped learning—completing the harder or more analytical aspects of learning in class as opposed to having students do it on their own—improves student learning.
  • How teachers can create flipped assignments that both engage students and advance student learning.

Bergmann introduces the idea of flipped videos, and provides step-by-step guidance to make them effective. The book also includes useful forms, a student survey, and a sample letter to send to parents explaining the flipped learning concept.

Teaching for Inclusion

Teaching for Inclusion: Eight Principles for Effective and Equitable Practice

Srikala Naraian

Teaching for Inclusion shows how educators navigate the competing demands of everyday practice with examples from urban, suburban, elementary, and secondary schools. The author offers eight guiding principles that can be used to advance an inclusive pedagogy. These principles permit teachers to both acknowledge and draw from the conditions within which they work, even as they uphold their commitments to equitable schooling for students from historically marginalized groups, particularly students with disabilities. Situated in the everyday realities of classrooms that often include mandated testing requirements and accountability policies, this book addresses multiple dimensions of inclusive practice including curricular decision making, the “grammar” of schooling, the status of family communities, and the demands of professional roles.

Book Features:

  • Values teachers as contributors to the field of inclusive education, rather than technicians implementing given concepts.
  • Offers ways of thinking about inclusive practices that educators can adapt to their own school contexts.
  • Captures the real dilemmas faced by classroom teachers as they implement recommended practices.
  • Incorporates a range of perspectives, including educators, students, and families.

What's Worth Teaching

What’s Worth Teaching? Rethinking Curriculum in the Age of Technology

Allan Collins

This important contribution to the future of education, by bestselling author and renowned cognitive scientist Allan Collins, proposes a school curriculum that will fit the needs of our modern era. Offering guidelines for deciding what is important to learn in order to become a knowledgeable person, a good citizen, a thoughtful worker, and a valuable friend in the 21st century, Collins considers the qualities needed for a healthy and productive life. Taking a close look at how advances in technology, communication, and the dissemination of information are reshaping the world, this volume examines how schools can foster flexible, self-directed learners who will succeed in the modern workplace. A concluding chapter presents a broad new vision for how schools can be redesigned to teach the kinds of knowledge and skills students will need in an increasingly complex society and global world.

 Book Features:

  • Identifies global trends and their implications for what we should be teaching our children.
  • Explains how schools are teaching an outdated curriculum.
  • Proposes a radical revision of the math and science curriculum.
  • Describes how literacy is changing in the digital age.
Did you miss our previous recommendations? It’s not too late to see March’s top new books  for educators.


About the Author


Ashleigh Lutz

Ashleigh graduated from Arizona State University with a BA in Psychology and a minor in Women and Gender Studies. She spent over three years in higher education developing resources and helping students succeed in online courses. During her tenure at Edgenuity, Ashleigh was eager to support Where Learning Clicks and the team’s commitment to helping teachers and students meet important goals and explore their passions. In addition to writing, a few of Ashleigh’s favorite things include rock climbing, chocolate, and cats.