Resources & Inspiration

Teaching for Tomorrow


“Unfor­tu­nately, there’s a mismatch between what science knows and what schools do.… [A]s the world economy demands more non-rou­tine, creative, concep­tual abil­i­ties, too many schools are moving in the wrong direc­tion. They’re redou­bling their emphasis on routines, right answers, and stan­dard­iza­tion.… We can do better. And we should.… [W]e need to help [students] move toward autonomy, mastery, and purpose.”  —Daniel H. Pink

The Global Achieve­ment Gap: Why Even Our Best Schools Don’t Teach the New Survival Skills Our Chil­dren Need — and What We Can Do About It, Tony Wagner (2008).  Education expert Tony Wagner situates our school problems in the larger context of the demands of the global knowledge economy. With insights gained from visits to classrooms in leading suburban schools, he analyzes performance by considering the skills needed to get a good job and become a productive citizen. Highlighting discussions with young people and the adults who work with them, Wagner also explains the ways in which today’s generation is differently motivated to excel.  A manifesto for the twenty-first century, this is a must-read for anyone interested in seeing our young people achieve their full potential.

Creating Innovators: The Making of Young People Who Will Change the World, Tony Wagner (2012)
In this groundbreaking book, education expert Tony Wagner provides a powerful rationale for developing an innovation-driven economy. He explores what parents, teachers, and employers must do to develop the capacities of young people to become innovators. In profiling compelling young American innovators such as Kirk Phelps, product manager for Apple’s first iPhone, and Jodie Wu, who founded a company that builds bicycle-powered maize shellers in Tanzania, Wagner reveals how the adults in their lives nurtured their creativity and sparked their imaginations, while teaching them to learn from failures and persevere. Wagner identifies a pattern—a childhood of creative play leads to deep-seated interests, which in adolescence and adulthood blossom into a deeper purpose for career and life goals. Play, passion, and purpose: These are the forces that drive young innovators.

Breakpoint and Beyond: Mastering the Future Today, George Land (1998)

There are now over 800 colleges in the United States that no longer require applicants to take the SAT.  “It would be much better for the country to have students focusing on high school courses that, based on evidence, will prepare them well for college and also prepare them well for the real world beyond college instead of spending enormous amounts of time trying to game the SAT.” – William Fitzsimmons, Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid at Harvard.


Experiential Project-Based Learning

“All students bring their feel­ings to the classroom…when students feel good in their hearts and bodies, their minds will natu­rally follow.” – Milton Chen
Science Shows Making Lessons Relevant Really Matters
Personal relevance is as vital to the learning brain as it is to the person learning.

Sustainability, Social and Emotional Learning (SEL)

The best place to go for anything involving SEL:
CASEL | Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning
National School Climate Center
Education Development Center
Emotional Intelligence Consortium
George Lucas Educational Foundation
Social Development Research Group

Tools of the Mind Program. A growing body of research indicates that many children start school not ready to learn not because they do not know their letters or numbers but because they lack one critical ability: the ability to regulate their social, emotional, and cognitive behaviors. Current research shows that self-regulation has a stronger association with academic achievement than IQ or entry-level reading or math skills.

Emotional Intel­li­gence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ , Daniel Goleman (2006).  Everyone knows that high IQ is no guarantee of success, happiness, or virtue, but until Emotional Intelligence, we could only guess why. Daniel Goleman’s brilliant report from the frontiers of psychology and neuroscience offers startling new insight into our “two minds”—the rational and the emotional—and how they together shape our destiny.  Through vivid examples, Goleman delineates the five crucial skills of emotional intelligence, and shows how they determine our success in relationships, work, and even our physical well-being. What emerges is an entirely new way to talk about being smart.

Ecoliterate: How Educators Are Cultivating Emotional, Social, and Ecological Intelligence, Daniel Goleman (2012)
Ecoliterate marks a rich collaboration between Daniel Goleman and the Center for Ecoliteracy, an organization best known for its pioneering work with school gardens, school lunches, and integrating ecological principles and sustainability into school curricula. For nearly twenty years the Center has worked with schools and organizations in more than 400 communities across the United States and numerous other countries.

To Enable Learning, Put (Emotional) Safety First (5)
Building a secure, supportive classroom environment is essential for young brains to learn.

“It’s [emotional intelligence] as fundamental as math and science in terms of turning a child into a capable adult”. – Peter Salovey, Ph.D Pioneering Researcher in Emotional Intelligence and President of Yale University

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