Back to School: New Books on Learning and Education

New books about the past, present, and future of education. 

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UBC: The Next Century, by Tyee Bridge

About the book: The University of British Columbia has become one of the world's leading institutions of higher learning and research. This beautifully produced book is a lively celebration of the university as it continues its pursuit of excellence and achievement in a rapidly changing world.

As the University of British Columbia enters its second century of existence, UBC: The Next Century celebrates the many accomplishments of this vibrant institution. Among the top universities in Canada and the world, UBC is known for its diverse student body, its groundbreaking research and its intimate ties to its surrounding community. Notable alumni include Canadian prime ministers and Supreme Court justices, Nobel laureates, Rhodes scholars, Olympians, and leaders in every field, from business to music to journalism to law.

Accompanied by a rich array of photographs, short articles by Tyee Bridge capture the people, places, and pursuits that animate UBC, from the athletic feats of the UBC Thunderbirds to research in quantum matter to campus traditions like Day of the LongBoat and Storm the Wall. UBC: The Next Century will inspire pride in past, present, and future members of the growing UBC community.

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Teaching Well: How healthy, empowered teachers lead to thriving, successful classrooms, by Lisa Bush

About the book: How can teachers balance the needs of busy classrooms with the needs of their own health and well-being? This remarkable book illustrates that embracing a healthy lifestyle is not only beneficial for teachers, but for students, classrooms, and schools, too. It suggests that teachers can reduce the work they do outside the classroom and still be a motivated and engaged teacher. Promoting a healthy work-life balance, the book explores how to avoid burnout while still creating an effective learning community. The conversational tone and a wealth of anecdotes will make this an invaluable guide for every educator.

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Out There Learning: Critical Reflections on Off-Campus Study Programs, edited by Deborah Louise Curran; Helga Thorson; Elizabeth Vibert & Cameron Owens

About the book: Universities across North America and beyond are experiencing growing demand for off-campus, experiential learning. Exploring the foundations of what it means to learn "out there," Out There Learning is an informed, critical investigation of the pedagogical philosophies and practices involved in short-term, off-campus programs or field courses. Bringing together contributors’ individual research and experience teaching or administering off-campus study programs, Out There Learning examines and challenges common assumptions about pedagogy, place, and personal transformation, while also providing experience-based insights and advice for getting the most out of faculty-led field courses.

Divided into three sections that investigate aspects of pedagogy, ethics of place, and course and program assessment, this collection offers "voices from the field" highlighting the experiences of faculty members, students, teaching assistants, and community members engaged in every aspect of an off-campus study programs. Several chapters examine study programs in the traditional territories of Indigenous communities and in the Global South. Containing an appendix highlighting some examples of off-campus study programs, Out There Learning offers new pathways for faculty, staff, and college and university administrators interested in enriching the experience of non-traditional avenues of study.

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A Class by Themselves?: The Origins of Special Education in Toronto and Beyond, by Jason Ellis

About the book: In A Class by Themselves?, Jason Ellis provides an erudite and balanced history of special needs education, an early twentieth century educational innovation that continues to polarize school communities across Canada, the United States, and beyond.

Ellis situates the evolution of this educational innovation in its proper historical context to explore the rise of intelligence testing, the decline of child labour and rise of vocational guidance, emerging trends in mental hygiene and child psychology, and the implementation of a new progressive curriculum. At the core of this study are the students. This book is the first to draw deeply on rich archival sources, including 1000 pupil records of young people with learning difficulties, who attended public schools between 1918 and 1945. Ellis uses these records to retell individual stories that illuminate how disability filtered down through the school system’s many nooks and crannies to mark disabled students as different from (and often inferior to) other school children. A Class by Themselves? sheds new light on these and other issues by bringing special education’s curious past to bear on its constantly contested present.

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Pushing the Limits: How Schools Can Prepare Our Children Today for the Challenges of Tomorrow, by Kelly Gallagher-Mackay & Nancy Steinhauer

About the book: How do we prepare children for a future we can't even imagine?

Across Canada, a debate swirls around what our children will need to know in the face of huge technological, economic, social and political change. The question has become an ideological battleground, and there is a hunger for a deeper understanding of what we should be doing to prepare children now for the challenges of the future. This timely, important book is an answer to that call.

In Pushing the Limits, Kelly Gallagher-Mackay and Nancy Steinhauer draw on their experiences as educational leaders to reveal that the schools of the future exist in the here and now. They introduce us to extraordinary Canadian public schools, deeply rooted in their communities, that are fostering innovators, nimble problem-solvers and engaged citizens, boosting math comprehension, cultivating creativity and using technology to broaden the parameters of learning. And they explore why the role of schools is expanding to nurture students' social-emotional skills and growth mindsets, and how vital this broader definition of education is to children's long-term health, happiness and success. This book provides a vision of what schooling can and should look like in our rapidly shifting world and explores how we—parents and teachers—can realize this vision together.

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Captive Audience: How Corporations Invaded Our Schools, by Catherine Gidney

About the book: White Spot, a popular BC restaurant chain, solicits hamburger concepts from third and fourth grade students and one of the student’s ideas becomes a feature on the kids’ menu. Home Depot donates playground equipment to an elementary school, and the ribbon-cutting ceremony culminates in a community swathed in corporate swag, temporary tattoos, and a new “Home Depot song” written by a teacher and sung by the children. Kindergarten students return home with a school district-prescribed dental hygiene flyer featuring a maze leading to a tube of Crest toothpaste. Schools receive five cents for each flyer handed to a student. While commercialism has existed in our schools for over a century, the corporate invasion of our schools reached unprecedented heights in the 1990s and 2000s after two decades of federal funding cuts and an increasing tendency to apply business models to the education system. Constant cutbacks have left school trustees, administrators, teachers, and parents with difficult decisions about how to finance programs and support students. Meanwhile, studies on the impact of advertising and consumer culture on children make clear that the effects are harmful both to the individual child and the broader culture. Captive Audience explores this compelling history of branding the classroom in Canada.

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Course Correction: A Map for the Distracted University,  by Paul W. Gooch

About the book: Course Correction engages in deliberation about what the twenty-first-century university needs to do in order to re-find its focus as a protected place for unfettered commitment to knowledge, not just as a space for creating employment or economic prosperity. The university’s business, Paul W. Gooch writes, is to generate and critique knowledge claims, and to transmit and certify the acquisition of knowledge. In order to achieve this, a university must have a reputation for integrity and trustworthiness, and this, in turn, requires a diligent and respectful level of autonomy from state, religion, and other powerful influences. It also requires embracing the challenges of academic freedom and the effective governance of an academic community.

Course Correction raises three important questions about the twenty-first-century university. In discussing the dominant attention to student experience, the book asks, "Is it now all about students?" Secondly, in questioning "What knowledge should undergraduates gain?" it provides a critique of undergraduate experience, advocating a Socratic approach to education as interrogative conversation. Finally, by asking "What and where are well-placed universities?" the book makes the case against placeless education offered in the digital world, in favour of education that takes account of its place in time and space.

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Varsity's Soldiers: The University of Toronto Contingent of the Canadian Officers' Training Corps, 1914-1968, by Eric McGeer

About the book: The role of Canadian universities in selecting and training officers for the armed forces is an important yet overlooked chapter in the history of higher education in Canada. For more than fifty years, the University of Toronto supported the largest and most active contingent of the Canadian Officers Training Corps (COTC), which sent thousands of officer candidates into the regular and reserve forces.

Based on the rich fund of documents housed in the university archives, Varsity’s Soldiers offers the first full-length history of military training in Toronto. Beginning with the formation of a student rifle company in 1861, and focussing on the story of the COTC from 1914 to 1968, author Eric McGeer seeks to enlarge appreciation of the university’s remarkable contribution to the defence of Canada, the place of military education in an academic setting, and the experience of the students who embodied the ideal of service to alma mater and to country.

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Fostering Mindfulness: Building skills that students need to manage their attention, emotions, and behavior in classrooms and beyond, by Shelley Murphy

About the book: An essential guide to mindfulness activities and strategies that help students cultivate the skills they need for self-regulation, stress management, and learning. Simple activities and practices throughout the book are designed to strengthen areas of the brain that allow students to better manage their attention, emotions, and behavior. This comprehensive resource shows you how to incorporate mindfulness in your classroom practice in just minutes a day. It offers step-by-step instructions, activity sheets, ready-to-use templates, and much more. This highly readable book includes stories from teachers who successfully incorporate mindfulness in their classroom practice.

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Rochdale, by David Sharpe

About the book: Toronto’s Rochdale College began as an experiment in living and learning, and ended as a symbol of the flower-child sixties, a financial and social controversy. In his well-researched and entertaining account, David Sharpe tells the fascinating story of the college’s seven-year rise and fall.

Sharpe examines the contradictions of the Age of Aquarius squeezed into one stark skyscraper on Bloor Street in Toronto. He looks at the financing and the internal government of the college, as well as its creative achievements over the years and its contribution to the community. Rochdale: The Runaway College provides a lively, detailed picture of the day-to-day life of the college residents: the peace parties and joyful live-ins, as well as the police raids and the drug overdoses of the dark days.

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Supporting Refugee Children: Strategies for Educators, by Jan Stewart

About the book: The psychosocial needs of war-affected children who migrate to other countries are difficult to identify, complicated to understand, and even more troubling to address. Supporting Refugee Children provides a holistic exploration of these challenges and offers practical advice for teachers, social workers, and counsellors, as well as suggestions for policy makers.

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Word by Word: 101 ways to inspire and engage students by building vocabulary, improving spelling, and enriching reading, writing, and learning, by Larry Swartz

About the book: Make words the core of classroom instruction and engagement! Literacy guru Larry Swartz offers novel ways to expand students’ interest in and facility with words and word power; day by day, word by word. This practical resource is designed to help students discover why word choice and language matter as they build vocabulary across subject areas, gain confidence in word usage, and increase their understanding of word patterns. This practical book shows you how to encourage and motivate students to become passionate about words and develop strategies to help them grow in all their language and learning skills. Ideal for new and experienced teachers, Word by Word is committed to helping students develop innovative ways to explore and make meaning with words.

September 3, 2019
Books mentioned in this post
UBC

UBC

The Next Century
edition:Hardcover
tagged : history
More Info
Teaching Well

Teaching Well

How healthy, empowered teachers lead to thriving, successful classrooms
edition:Paperback
More Info
Out There Learning

Out There Learning

Critical Reflections on Off-Campus Study Programs
edition:Hardcover
also available: Paperback eBook
tagged : higher, geography
More Info
A Class by Themselves?

A Class by Themselves?

The Origins of Special Education in Toronto and Beyond
edition:eBook
also available: Paperback Hardcover
tagged : history
More Info
Pushing the Limits

Pushing the Limits

How Schools Can Prepare Our Children Today for the Challenges of Tomorrow
edition:Paperback
also available: Hardcover
More Info
Captive Audience

Captive Audience

How Corporations Invaded Our Schools
edition:Paperback
More Info
Course Correction

Course Correction

A Map for the Distracted University
edition:eBook
also available: Paperback Hardcover
More Info
Varsity's Soldiers

Varsity's Soldiers

The University of Toronto Contingent of the Canadian Officers' Training Corps, 1914-1968
edition:eBook
also available: Hardcover
tagged : canada, history
More Info
Fostering Mindfulness

Fostering Mindfulness

Building skills that students need to manage their attention, emotions, and behavior in classrooms and beyond
edition:Paperback
More Info
Rochdale

Rochdale

edition:eBook
also available: Paperback
tagged :
More Info
Word by Word

Word by Word

101 ways to inspire and engage students by building vocabulary, improving spelling, and enriching reading, writing, and learning
edition:Paperback
More Info
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