Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Summer Reading 2017

What I’m reading this summer – Advice from faculty professional developers

Rhonda DeWitt
Rhonda is the chair of Pro-Development for Lake Washington’s Equity Diversity Inclusion (EDI) Council, which consists of employees from across the campus (VP, Deans, Faculty, Staff) and has 20 members reading the book, Is Everyone Really Equal? by Özlem Sensoy and Robin DiAngelo. The purpose of the EDI Council participating in reading and discussing Is Everyone Really Equal? is to ensure we are working from a stance of informed knowledge, rather than personal opinions, and to ensure we have the essential tools for effective communication and work on the subject of equity on our campus and in our classrooms here at LWTech. This is our way of showing a unified stance on our unwavering commitment to advocating equity at LWTech. 

Melody Schneider
Melody is the current Co-Coordinator for Faculty Professional Development at Edmonds Community College and she is recommending Small Teaching by  James M. Lang.
Melody says: Faculty in my department (High School Completion) at EdCC started reading this book last winter.  We tried strategies from the first chapter during winter quarter. For my part, the strategies around retrieval had a great impact on a student’s memory and they thought so too!  This summer I'm ready to finish the book and apply additional strategies.  I particularly like how Lang uses research to support each idea along with stories and examples.  It's a small book, a quick connect and absolutely useful.

Claire Murata

Claire is on the library staff at Shoreline Community College. She’s reading the assessment section from Reading for Understanding, R. Schoenback , Cynthia Greenleaf and Lynn Murphy, and also Metaliteracy in Practice Eds.  Trudi E. Jacobson and Thomas P. Mackey. This book shows how teachers and students can work together to boost literacy, engagement, and achievement. Specifically, it helps readers use the Reading Apprenticeship® framework to increase student engagement and academic achievement in subject area classes. Amazon says of Metaliteracy: “Today's learners communicate, create, and share information using a range of information technologies such as social media, blogs, microblogs, wikis, mobile devices and apps, virtual worlds, and MOOCs. In Metaliteracy, respected information literacy experts Mackey and Jacobson present a comprehensive structure for information literacy theory that builds on decades of practice while recognizing the knowledge required for an expansive and interactive information environment.”

Sally Heilstedt
Sally is the Associate Dean of Instruction at Lake Washington Institute of Technology. Sally says, “I would like to finish The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate—Discoveries from a Secret World, by Peter Wohlleben. So far, I have been astounded by the connectedness that communities of trees (aka forests) practice to survive and thrive. I find myself reflecting on the beautiful complexity of our world and where we have complicated it unnecessarily. I am inspired to seek out the same connectedness with family and friends and with colleagues. It has been a challenge. Trees have powerful resources for preserving their communities and even those fail. I face distractions and seeming urgencies that keep me from focusing on the great work and meaningful relationships that result when connectedness is the primary goal. Here’s to learning from our leafed neighbors!”

Natasa Kesler
 Natasa is the Director of Cascadia’s Teaching and Learning Academy. A couple of years ago at Cascadia College we had a very successful Faculty Learning Circle inspired by Therese Huston’s book “Teaching What You Don’t Know” (2009). The title summarizes a typical problem faced by faculty (especially at Community Colleges) who are often called to teach outside their own expertise area.  However, Huston’s book is much more than a manual for novice teachers. It is a well-organized work, full of practical advice and detailed descriptions of numerous successful classroom strategies for new and seasoned instructors. In addition to addressing the struggles faced by college faculty, the book offers very practical active learning classroom ideas, describes approaches to collect student feedback and ways to design meaningful assessments.  Cascadia’s Teaching and Learning Academy (TLA) was so impressed by Huston’s book that we decided to make a tradition of gifting it to all new Cascadia faculty.

Peg Balachowski
Peg is the Associate Dean of Teaching and Learning at Everett Community College. From Peg: This summer I am going to read Becoming a Critically Reflective Teacher by Stephen P. Brookfield. Marzano’s “Becoming a Reflective Teacher” is a handbook that I refer to often, and it’s a great handbook for strategies (important!) Brookfield opens his book with “We teach to change the world.” How can you not read a book that begins with that statement? After finishing this I hope to be able to move on to his more recent book, “Teaching for Critical Thinking. “ Critical thinking is one of EvCC’s College Core Learning Outcomes and I want to make it a big part of my work with faculty in the coming year.

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