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Cognitive Capital: A Concise Guide to Supporting Teacher Growth

Even though Cognitive Capital: Investing in Teacher Quality is under 125 pages, Cathy Gassenheimer read it slowly, “giving myself time to reflect and learn.” It is, she says, “truly a master class in leadership and coaching,” based on the belief that both educators and students prosper when they have some degree of autonomy and embrace high standards and continuous growth.

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Dynamic Classroom Management Begins with Belonging

Pandemic life has been challenging for all of us, particularly students and teachers. As we seek to return to a safer and more predictable environment, the new ASCD book We Belong: 50 Strategies to Create Community and Revolutionize Classroom Management can serve as a valuable guide for teachers wanting to connect with their students so they thrive both academically and emotionally.

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A Minute to Think: Reclaiming Some Space in Your Busy Life

When can something you consider to be a positive actually become a negative? According to Juliet Funt, author of A Minute to Think: Reclaim Creativity, Conquer Busyness, and Do Your Best Work, our admirable traits become less admirable when we take them to the extreme. Funt urges us to find “white space” in all we do. Space to think, space to prioritize, space to communicate more effectively, and space to enjoy family, life, and hobbies. Cathy Gassenheimer shares some of Funt’s how-to ideas.

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The Extended Mind: “The Stuff Outside Your Head Makes You Smart”

Author and science journalist Annie Murphy Paul tells us that: “Thinking outside of the brain means skillfully engaging entities external to our heads—the feelings and movements of our bodies, the physical spaces in which we learn and work, and the minds of other people around us—drawing them into our out mental processes.” Cathy Gassenheimer shares ideas from the book of special interest to educators.  

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How to Stress Less and Achieve More in Your “Green Zone”

How do we find the time and energy to do all we are asked (and all we want) to do without burning out? Carey Nieuwhof – a lawyer turned pastor, writer and speaker – is the author of At Your Best: How to Get Time, Energy, and Priorities Working in Your Favor. Cathy Gassenheimer shares five of his “green zone” strategies to help us maximize our time and energy at work and at home.

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In Traumatic Times, EL Magazine Helps Us Explore ‘Compassionate Discipline’

The compelling theme of the latest issue of Educational Leadership is “Compassionate Discipline.” This is one issue of ASCD’s monthly magazine that Cathy Gassenheimer recommends every educator read. In her post, Cathy summarizes four articles – each presenting a different dimension of what it means to approach school discipline with curiosity and compassion in traumatic times.

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The Quest to Remake the American High School

Imagine high schools populated by teachers and students who can’t wait to get to school every day to collaborate, discover, create, and learn. In their research-based book In Search of Deeper Learning, Jal Mehta and Susan Fine call for a transformational shift away from the emphasis on breadth over depth that characterizes most high school classrooms toward a new “grammar for learning” that better prepares students for today’s world.

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How Can We Help Ourselves and Others Change for the Better?

If you are contemplating making a change for the better, Cathy Gassenheimer recommends adding Katy Milkman’s “How to Change” to your must-read list. We’ve all learned just how hard change can be during the many months of the pandemic. Wharton professor Milkman offers a research-based book full of engaging stories and actionable advice that we can use in our own lives and those of our students.

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Active Listening Is a Critical Tool for Educators. Here’s How to Sharpen It!

Active listening is a critical skill for teachers, administrators, coaches, parents – everyone! And just like developing any craft, active listening requires intentionality and the ability to turn off that inner “here’s what I know” voice that seems to be ever present in our mind. Cathy Gassenheimer shares five big take-aways from the new book “Listen Like You Mean It.”

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