An Agency of the Regional Offices of Education for Will and Grundy - Kendall Counties
Phone: (815) 744-8334   Fax: (815) 744-8396  
Saturday, April 17, 2021

Online Monthly Educational Book Studies

April 2021 - Choice Words-How Our Language Affects Children’s Learning

PD Hours: 6Jill Sorensen-Davis

In productive classrooms, teachers don't just teach children skills: they build emotionally and relationally healthy learning communities. Teachers create intellectual environments that produce not only technically competent students, but also caring, secure, actively literate human beings.
Choice Words shows how teachers accomplish this using their most powerful teaching tool: language. Throughout, Peter Johnston provides examples of apparently ordinary words, phrases, and uses of language that are pivotal in the orchestration of the classroom. Grounded in a study by accomplished literacy teachers, the book demonstrates how the things we say (and don't say) have surprising consequences for what children learn and for who they become as literate people. Through language, children learn how to become strategic thinkers, not merely learning the literacy strategies. In addition, Johnston examines the complex learning that teachers produce in classrooms that is hard to name and thus is not recognized by tests, by policy-makers, by the general public, and often by teachers themselves, yet is vitally important.
This book will be enlightening for any teacher who wishes to be more conscious of the many ways their language helps children acquire literacy skills and view the world, their peers, and themselves in new ways.
Length: 120 pages


May 2021 - Generation Z Unfiltered: Facing Nine Hidden Challenges of the Most Anxious Population

PD Hours: 12Jill Sorensen-Davis

Leading today’s teens and young adults can often times leave today’s adults feeling both concerned and fearful for their future.
Generation Z is growing up in a time that is causing some drastic changes that can be difficult to understand. While they are the most socially connected generation in history, statistics show that they are more lonely than ever. While they will enter the workforce with more education, they will also have less job experience than any previous generation. While they can binge watch or game for hours, most struggle with an 6-8 second attention spans in the classroom.
Most concerning of all, they are now the most anxious youth population in human history. Research tells us that the average student today has the same level of anxiety as the average psychiatric patient in the early 1950’s.
The fact is Generation Z is completely different from past generations. These challenges, however, don’t have to mean they are guaranteed to fail. In order for them to successfully reach their potential as a generation, we, their parents, teachers, coaches, employers, and leaders must choose to believe in them, encourage them, and walk with them through the nine greatest challenges they will face.
That is what this book is all about. After decades of research, conversations, and hands-on experience, Dr. Tim Elmore and Andrew McPeak have collated their wisdom into this new resource for anyone who desires to lead Generation Z. Inside you will find practical ideas along with solutions that are research-based and solution-biased.
In Generation Z Unfiltered, they share practical, research-based solutions that help adults:
• Understand the differences between Generation Z and previous generations – including the Millennials (Generation Y)
• Discover the nine unique challenges that Generation Z is currently facing and how you can help them practically address each one
• Develop coping skills in students to help them overcome their high levels of stress and anxiety
• Cultivate grit and resilience in young adults that will allow them to bounce back from future setbacks
• Apply proven, research-based strategies to equip teens and young adults to reach their potential
Length: 311 pages


June 2021: Onward: Cultivating Emotional Resilience in Educators

PD Hours: 15Jill Sorensen-Davis

A practical framework to avoid burnout and keep great teachers teaching Onward tackles the problem of educator stress, and provides a practical framework for taking the burnout out of teaching. Stress is part of the job, but when 70 percent of teachers quit within their first five years because the stress is making them physically and mentally ill, things have gone too far. Unsurprisingly, these effects are highest in difficult-to-fill positions such as math, science, and foreign languages, and in urban areas and secondary classrooms―places where we need our teachers to be especially motivated and engaged. This book offers a path to resiliency to help teachers weather the storms and bounce back―and work toward banishing the rain for good. This actionable framework gives you concrete steps toward rediscovering yourself, your energy, and your passion for teaching. You’ll learn how a simple shift in mindset can affect your outlook, and how taking care of yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally is one of the most important things you can do. The companion workbook helps you put the framework into action, streamlining your way toward renewal and strength.

  • Cultivate resilience with a four-part framework based on 12 key habits
  • Uncover your true self, understand emotions, and use your energy where it counts
  • Adopt a mindful, story-telling approach to communication and community building
  • Keep learning, playing, and creating to create an environment of collective celebration

By cultivating resilience in schools, we help ensure that we are working in, teaching in, and leading organizations where every child thrives, and where the potential of every child is recognized and nurtured. Onward provides a step-by-step plan for reigniting that spark. About the Author ELENA AGUILAR is the founder and president of Bright Morning Consulting, an educational consulting group that works around the world supporting educators to meet the needs of children. She is the author of The Art of Coaching and The Art of Coaching Teams and a longtime contributor to Edutopia and EdWeek.


July 2021: Mindset: The New Psychology of Success

PD Hours: 11Jill Sorensen-Davis

The updated edition of the book that has changed millions of lives with its insights into the growth mindset. After decades of research, world-renowned Stanford University psychologist Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., discovered a simple but groundbreaking idea: the power of mindset. In this brilliant book, she shows how success in school, work, sports, the arts, and almost every area of human endeavor can be dramatically influenced by how we think about our talents and abilities. People with a fixed mindset—those who believe that abilities are fixed—are less likely to flourish than those with a growth mindset—those who believe that abilities can be developed. Mindset reveals how great parents, teachers, managers, and athletes can put this idea to use to foster outstanding accomplishment. In this edition, Dweck offers new insights into her now famous and broadly embraced concept. She introduces a phenomenon she calls false growth mindset and guides people toward adopting a deeper, truer growth mindset. She also expands the mindset concept beyond the individual, applying it to the cultures of groups and organizations. With the right mindset, you can motivate those you lead, teach, and love—to transform their lives and your own. About the Author Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading researchers in the fields of personality, social psychology, and developmental psychology. She is the Lewis and Virginia Eaton Professor of Psychology at Stanford University, has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences, and has won nine lifetime achievement awards for her research. She addressed the United Nations on the eve of their new global development plan and has advised governments on educational and economic policies. Her work has been featured in almost every major national publication, and she has appeared on Today, Good Morning America, and 20/20. She lives with her husband in Palo Alto, California.This course was created through the Professional Development Alliance in collaboration with ROE 56 & ROE 24.


August 2021 - Hillbilly Elegy By J.D. Vance

PD Hours: 11Jill Sorensen-Davis

Subtitled “A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis,” Vance recounts the struggles of his Appalachian family, who moved from Kentucky coal country to Ohio steel country for jobs and a better life—but are now caught in the demise of the U.S. manufacturing economy and a legacy of poverty, abuse and addiction. Although he mostly hews to the travails of his own family—and those of his Scots-Irish “hillbilly” culture—he deftly weaves into his narrative broad trends and research to help paint a portrait of a white working class in distress. In clear but powerful and sometimes self-deprecating prose, Vance describes how the Kentucky transplants to Middletown, Ohio, and their offspring jumped from the frying pan (poverty and loss of coal-mining jobs in Appalachia) to the fire (the loss of steel industry jobs in the Rust Belt). Their fleeting advancement to the middle class stalled when the economy went south and the family wasn’t able to overcome the legacy of domestic abuse, alcoholism and lack of education.

Length: 272 pages


August 2021 - The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog by Dr. Bruce Perry

PD Hours: 12Jill Sorensen-Davis

What happens when a young brain is traumatized? How does terror, abuse, or disaster affect a child's mind--and how can that mind recover? Child psychiatrist Bruce Perry has helped children faced with unimaginable horror: genocide survivors, murder witnesses, kidnapped teenagers, and victims of family violence. In The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog, he tells their stories of trauma and transformation through the lens of science, revealing the brain's astonishing capacity for healing. Deftly combining unforgettable case histories with his own compassionate, insightful strategies for rehabilitation, Perry explains what exactly happens to the brain when a child is exposed to extreme stress-and reveals the unexpected measures that can be taken to ease a child's pain and help him grow into a healthy adult. Through the stories of children who recover-physically, mentally, and emotionally-from the most devastating circumstances, Perry shows how simple things like surroundings, affection, language, and touch can deeply impact the developing brain, for better or for worse. In this deeply informed and moving book, Bruce Perry dramatically demonstrates that only when we understand the science of the mind can we hope to heal the spirit of even the most wounded child.

Length: 288 pages

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