12 Books That I Recommend All Educators Have In Their Personal Library

I was reading over 12 Books About Learning Every Teacher Should Read which lists the following:

12 Books About Learning

My list, in no particular order…

1. Understanding by Design (before Essential Questions) lays out how to best (IMHO) align curriculum, assessment, and instruction in schools.  It explains backward design and is a precursor to all subsequent books written by the two authors.

2. Transformative assessment outlines the various levels of formative assessment: instructional adjustments, learning tactic adjustments, classroom climate shift, and schoolwide implementation…a must read!

3. This book along with the reader Classic and Contemporary Readings in the Philosophy of Education, distinguishes between philosophy, ideology, and theory, and how they relate to education.

4. Linked provides a good overview of how we all are connected.  This is not directed towards education per se, but is nonetheless relevant since the trend is to view education from a connectivist lens.

5. A must for the instructional leader in all of us!

6. This often cited book, offers contrast to connective learning in the workplace (e.g., schools).  Those who think in terms of missions, visions, values, and objectives will enjoy how this book frames these within an educational context.

7. A must read chapter is Leadership as Entitlement, which links to other parts of the book, supporting an overall notion that all can lead, regardless of title, rank, or position.

8. Provides a good historical perspective of roles teachers can play in the classroom.  The Socratic Method (i.e., Socratic Seminar) is discussed at length.

9. Anyone who has English language learners in class will benefit from a general overview of language, meaning, interpretation, and inference.  This book reminds me to reflect on how other learners (native speakers or not) might interpret what I say and vice versa.

10. You don’t have to be an administrator to see how what happens within schools can impact the community at large.  This book addresses the “big picture” in how schools can be perceived.

11. There are many books on the subject, but Downey and others (2004) describe it best…walkthroughs allow for reflective and sharing of experiences, opinions, and ideas in a low-risk, professional learning environment.

12. This classic book (over 100 years old), How We Think, is still a personal favorite.  We still have reasons for unpacking how thought and logic come together in schools, both from a learning and pedagogical standpoint.

There you have…my top 12 books that I recommend at this particular point in time.  What books make up your top 12, and why?

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