Summer is so close we can almost reach out and touch it! As you map out your well-earned summer vacations and pool-side plans, I’ve put together a summer reading guide of 12 book recommendations that you can mix in with the fiction. I have personally read each of the books in the My Recommendations section below, and I love them. The books under the On My List section are the books that I have had on my own want to read Goodreads list that I plan to read over the next few months. Below are my 12 book recommendations for edtech coaches (or really any educator).
These books will have you counting down the days until school is back in session because they’re so inspiring! They are in alphabetical order by title.
1. Code in Every Class by Kevin Brookhouser and Ria Megnin. This book is a great resource for educators at any skill level and mindset about coding; it will convince those who are skeptical and enrich those who have already begun. I would highly recommend the book to every classroom teacher, administrator, anyone involved in K12 curriculum decisions, and to parents with children in school. With an emphasis on computational thinking in the ISTE Standards for teachers and students, coaches will need to not only understand coding in the classroom themselves but be able to help teachers implement it. Read the rest of my review of the book here.
2. Connected from the Start by Kathy Cassidy. With our ever changing world, our students need to learn how to virtually collaborate with people from all over the world- there have been multiple studies to support this and the ISTE Standards reflect this too. Cassidy’s book not only gave a number of excellent examples to implement technology and global collaboration with our youngest kiddos, but these examples can translate and scale up for any grade level. She talks about using social media (mainly Twitter) with her students, blogging as a class, each of her students “owning” their own blog as a place for regular reflection and e-portfolios, students creating videos of their in-class work to reflect about it on the blog, and so much more. I would highly recommend this book to anyone interested in investigating global connection opportunities for your students, especially those of primary and elementary students. Read the rest of my review of the book here.
3. Courageous Edventures by Jennie Magiera. This is one of my current favorites, and I’m recommending it to everyone who will listen! This book will leave you ready to rock ‘n roll with tons of strategies, tools, and ideas for technology integration in the classroom. It also provides strategies for coaches and administrators that can be taken in pieces, or in full, to support teachers transformation in the classroom (or to improve their own practice). Continue to read my full review of the book here.
4. Digital Leadership: Changing Paradigms for Changing Times by Eric Sheninger. I read this one a couple of years ago, but it still remains one of my favorite tech leadership books. I pull quotes from this book into my trainings all of the time- especially when any sort of admin are present. Some of the individual tech is outdated, but it’s not about the specific tools. Sheninger paints a very realistic and clear picture of why leaders need to embrace technology (not just tell their teachers to do so) and how they can go about doing that. I think every person in a leadership position within a school should have to read this book. One of my favorite quotes from the book: “More often than not, the individuals trusted with leading change in the twenty-first century are the least knowledgeable about the twenty-first century.” Think about that… it’s so true! Don’t let yourself be one of those people.
5. Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World by Adam M. Grant. During a Google Innovator Hangout a month or so back, Jennie Magiera (author of Courageous Edventures mentioned above) recommended this book. I had just finished her book and was looking for my next one, so I picked this one up and finished it by the next week (confession: I listened to the Audible audio version during my commute and read the Kindle version at home- they sync with Wispersync!). It shed light on a lot of misconceptions I (and many other people) held. It’s all about original thought, developing original ideas and products and fighting group-think. I like to pull in some thought provoking, non-education specific resources to learn from every now and then. This really was an awesome book!
6. The Future of the Mind by Michio Kaku. There are times when this book got a bit over my head, but all in all, it was fascinating. I read this book after Dr. Kaku’s ISTE 2016 Keynote. In the book, Dr. Kaku talks about a number of technology prototypes that already exist that many of us wouldn’t even dream up. Pulling on his research and examples from this book have helped me shed some light on the whole, “we’re preparing students for jobs that don’t exist yet,” statement. Teachers (not just teachers… people) often have a hard time grasping this concept, and this book puts tangible examples to back up this statement. When I use examples from this book when I work with teachers, they have a better understanding why they need to change the way and what they teach. Plus, as someone who generally enjoys technology, it was pretty cool! (I also listened to this book via the Audible audio version and did Wispersync with the Kindle version.)
On My List
7. Classroom Managemen in the Digital Age by Heather Dowd and Patrick Green. I’m actually going to read this one with one of the high schools I work with. They’re going 1:1 next year, and the principal wanted to give each teacher a copy of this book. We’re going to turn it into a book study in the new LMS (Schoology) that they’ll be using next year to kill two birds with one stone- give them some exposure to the LMS and have meaningful conversations about classroom management and their new 1:1 classrooms.
8. Invent to Learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom by Sylvia Libow Martinez and Gary S. Stager. I’ve been trying to absorb and learn as much as I can about makerspaces, coding, and design thinking in the classroom. With the release of the new ISTE Teacher Standards coming this June, I have a feeling there will be a heavy emphasis on these concepts. Tech coaches will need to understand them just as much as teachers will, and I know I have a way to go. This book has been recommended to me by a number of great minds as a must-read on these topics. (psst- this one is also available on Kindle Unlimited if you subscribe!)
9. Lead Like A Pirate by Shelley Burgess and Beth Houf. I’ve been participating in a couple of #satchatwc Twitter chats over the past few months where Shelley, Beth and a few others moderate the chats. The chats have surrounded ideas from this book (in particular how to change and create an excellent culture), and I’ve been inspired to check it out as a result.
10. Learning Transformed: 8 Keys to Designing Tomorrow’s Schools, Today by Eric Sheninger and Tom Murray. These are two of the first names I learned in the field of educational technology when I became an edtech coach. They are brilliant, and I cannot wait to soak up what these two have to say! This one is currently on pre-order (will be available June 6, 2017).
11. The End of Average: How We Succeed in a World That Values Sameness by Todd Ross. During the same Google Innovator hangout mentioned above, Jaime Casap recommended this book. If the title alone didn’t pull me in, the fact that Jaime recommended it would.
12. The Innovator’s Mindset: Empower Learning, Unleash Talent, and Lead a Culture of Creativity by George Couros. I recently started reading George’s blog and I just could not agree more with everything he writes. I have been meaning to read this book for some time after so many recommendations, so I’m finally making it a to-do! (psst- this one is also available on Kindle Unlimited if you subscribe!)
What’s on your reading list? Please, please share in the comments- I love good book recommendations!
Tech To You Later!
Disclosure: I will receive a small commission from Amazon if you purchase any of these books from the Amazon links provided. I don’t recommend anything I don’t fully stand by. Your support helps me provide content to you for free. Thank you!