Professional Development: A Summer Reading Challenge
It was such a beautiful day here today – just felt like summer! We’re so close to the end now…I don’t know about all of you, but I’ve had quite a year! I won’t get into all of the gory details, but I am definitely looking forward to a bit of a break. We were in the paper quite a bit this year for different reasons and that will continue on for the next while. This is the most recent news story about my school, but it really is just the tip of the iceberg as far as what’s been going on this year. More details about that later, perhaps.
So believe me when I say, I know how busy and stressed everyone can be – especially at this time of year. We’re all looking at our curriculum documents, making sure (perhaps hoping) that we’ve covered everything…We’re looking at our students – wondering where they will finally finish in terms of placement or promotion into the next grade. It’s a hectic time, I realize. That being said, I have a challenge for you, because I know you’re up for it!
I believe in being a life-long learner. So, every summer, I find the time to read at least one professional book. I’m still on the lookout for what I’ll read this summer, so if you have any suggestions – please let me know! I find, that I have NO time to read much in the way of professional resources during the school year. However, over the summer, I can always find some time at the beach or on a lazy, rainy afternoon to do some reading to improve my practice. I always find lots of strategies, ideas and suggestions that I highlight and make mental notes of that I can use in my classroom the following year. Yes, it is the summer and we all need time off. But I find that when I don’t have the usual stresses of the classroom, picking up a professional resource is more of a pleasure than a pain, because I’m choosing to read it!
My challenge to you, is to find a professional book to read this summer. Before you run out and buy anything, I suggest checking with the resource department at your school. Chances are, that your resource teachers will have some professional books available that might be right up your alley. Maybe you even have a book in mind right now, something that you’ve been wanting to read, but haven’t gotten around to.
Of course, you need to take the beginning of your summer break to just breathe! Once you’ve gotten some relaxation in – mid-break…let’s say…I challenge you to pick up that professional resource and be one of the “life-long learners” that we encourage our students to be.
Below are some of the books that I’ve read in the last couple of years. If you have no idea what to read – any of these would be good places to start. It really depends on where you are in your career and what you’d like to know more about, or personally work on.
I LOVED each of these books for different reasons. Good luck with finding a book that you’re excited to read this summer and accepting my “challenge”. I bet a lot of you already do this anyway…not much of a challenge for you folks;)
“Motivating Students Who Don’t Care”
This is a quick read, at only 65 pages. It offers 5 main processes for motivating students and reasons why they may be unmotivated in the first place. A great read for those of us who teach middle school especially, where motivation can be a real issue.
“Start Where They Are”
This is a book that I’ve read MULTIPLE times and plan to pick up again this summer. It is the go-to book for doable, differentiation strategies for middle school.
“The First Days of School”
This is a classic for teachers, new and seasoned. It’s full of strategies and ideas to get organized for those first days of the school year, which makes it the perfect summer read.
So, once your year is officially done, take some time for yourself and when you’re ready, pull out that book and enjoy! Please let me know what books you plan to read or are reading, and what you think of them!
Posted on May 20, 2012, in Differentiated instruction, Education, End of The Year, General Teaching, Middle School, Professional Development and tagged life long learners, professional books, professional development. Bookmark the permalink. 16 Comments.