10 Must-Read Books For Educators Everywhere

In honor of National Reading Month, I’m highlighting my top 10 must-read books for educators everywhere. As educators, it’s so important to stay sharp and continually challenge ourselves with new books and methods not just for personal development but also for professional development. Did I mention, studies have shown that reading can alleviate stress? 

I love reading and couldn’t resist sharing my personal reading list with you. Topics range from co-teaching to identifying student trauma and how to help. The books are in no particular order. The first book is just as good as the last. Enjoy!

  1. The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization by Peter Senge
    This book highlights group problem solving using the five disciplines of a learning organization. All the disciplines are interlinked and work together similar to the systems of the body. When one system is dysfunctioning, it usually has an impact on another system.
  2. Leadership and Self-Deception: Getting Out of the Box by The Arbinger Institute
    One of my favorite professional development books for principals, Leadership and Self-Deception, shows how the disease of self-deception is the root of all leadership problems in organizations across the board. The book discusses what self-deception is, how it infects our lives, the damage it does, and what can be done about it.
  3. Thriving in the Wake of Trauma: A Multicultural Guide by Dr. Thema Bryant-Davis
    This favorite contains numerous practical examples of innovative leadership and breaking new grounds in psychology. The book recognizes how trauma survivors of different races, ethnicities, sexual orientations, migration statuses, religions, and other cultural factors need more collective social solutions to their problems instead of treating these problems the same. This book shows how healthcare professionals can learn better how to better help students dealing with trauma flourish. 
  4. The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable by Patrick Lencioni
    In The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable, Patrick Lencioni discusses the five main dysfunctions that result in the failure of teamwork. He uses the story of a CEO to outline these dysfunctions and also the proper steps that a leader needs to take to ensure their team can become powerful and effective!
  5. Treating Trauma and Traumatic Grief in Children and Adolescents by Judith A. Cohen MD, Anthony P. Mannarino, and Esther Deblinger PhD
    This book is one of my favorite guides to learning how to deal with children who may have sustained some sort of trauma in their lives. It goes into detail on how you may be able to identify Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in children as well as what traumatic grief in children aged 3-18 may look like. It is a must-read for any parent or educator who may want to know how to help a child with trauma cope. 
  6. Zero Tolerance: Resisting the Drive for Punishment by William Ayers
    Zero Tolerance is a book about the American school system’s disciplinary measures. This favorite book explores how zero tolerance is a harsh punishment system and sends kids home from school for nonviolent crimes. It also outlines how this policy not only affects black and brown children disproportionately but also how the policy is against free speech, privacy, and due process. 
  7. The Trouble With Black Boys: …And Other Reflections on Race, Equity, and the Future of Public Education by Pedro Noguera
    In this favorite, Pedro Noguera examines the aspects of racism in schools and society. He explains how racism affects the students who are on the receiving end as well as how it is the job of educators to help these students reach their intellectual potential. He covers everything from achievement gaps to immigration. This is surely a winner for any educator. 
  8. Transforming School Mental Health Services: Population-Based Approaches to Promoting the Competency and Wellness of Children by Elizabeth Doll and Jack A. Cummings
    This book is a must-read for any educator or parent. This book goes through a ten-step guide on how to provide population-based services in schools. These services include wellness and academic achievements for individual students and schools. 
  9. A Guide to Co-Teaching: Practical Tips for Facilitating Student Learning by Richard A. Villa
    This is a perfect book for any educator to read. This book teaches about co-teaching and how each educator can both bring unique new skills to the classroom. These unique skills allow for more enjoyable and creative lessons and better academic success for the students!
  10. Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Edition by Peter W. D. Wright and Pamela Darr Wright
    This is a valuable resource for anyone who has a child or student with disabilities. It goes through all of the educational laws for special education as well as how to get better services for a child with disabilities. 

All the Best,
David Heiber, Ed.D.

Related Article: There’s No Need to Argue…Schools Just Don’t Understand!

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