Understanding How We Learn, by Dr Yana Weinstein, Dr Megan Sumeracki, with Oliver Caviglioli

Why I read it: I’ve always been fascinated by how we learn and the ways in which I can apply that knowledge to my teaching practice. I’ve read several books on these ideas, but this was the first that tied a lot of the evidence together in one place; the addition of Caviglioli’s visuals madeContinue reading “Understanding How We Learn, by Dr Yana Weinstein, Dr Megan Sumeracki, with Oliver Caviglioli”

Wednesday’s Wisdom #5: Eye Contact

Having recently acquired a beautiful Huntaway puppy, I’ve thrown myself into the perplexing world of dog training. Unlike education, I can report that canine trainers are not, on the whole, experiencing a renaissance period of evidence-based pedagogy, and a quick search on YouTube will unearth multiple dog ‘behaviour experts’ who inevitably contradict each other’s attemptsContinue reading “Wednesday’s Wisdom #5: Eye Contact”

Think Again, by Adam Grant

Why I read it: I enjoy reading books about psychology and behaviour, so that I can understand the mind better, and then try to transfer some of that learning to my professional and personal life. I’d heard Adam Grant speak at various events and on podcasts, and like his personable and articulate style, coupled withContinue reading “Think Again, by Adam Grant”

Wednesday’s Wisdom #4: Words create worlds, and the joy of coaching

‘Without autonomy, you leave your brain at home’, Dr Kulvarn Atwal told me at his school in 2019, when explaining how all staff have a coach and use the process to improve their sense of autonomy, and to be solution-focused in the way they approach challenges at work. That sounded powerful. But coaching… isn’t thatContinue reading “Wednesday’s Wisdom #4: Words create worlds, and the joy of coaching”

The Leader’s Guide to Coaching in Schools, by John Campbell and Christian van Nieuwerburgh

Why I read it: After doing two coaching courses and taking on some coachees, I started to ponder the role of 1) leadership coaching, and 2) leading a coaching culture in an organisation. I already knew about the work of John Campbell and Christian van Nieuwerburgh, so this book was a natural and worthy choice.Continue reading “The Leader’s Guide to Coaching in Schools, by John Campbell and Christian van Nieuwerburgh”

The BASIC Coaching Method, by Andy Buck

Why I read it: During the staff wellbeing research project that I conducted in 2019-20, I read many academic papers pointing towards coaching as a tool to improve staff efficacy, autonomy, and so much more. I was intrigued. My experience of ‘coaching’ over the years had been to misunderstand its principles: when I’d spoken toContinue reading “The BASIC Coaching Method, by Andy Buck”

Running the Room, by Tom Bennett

Why I read it: I’ve been in pastoral roles for six years now, and as I said when I reviewed ‘Beyond Wiping Noses’, I felt that I’d always acted on instinct. I engage with research and many voices when it comes to curriculum and pedagogy, but hadn’t necessarily had access to an evidence base orContinue reading “Running the Room, by Tom Bennett”

Wednesday’s Wisdom #3: Building Belonging

You never quite know where your values and traits originate, or how they evolve over time. Nature vs nurture. Life experiences. Social norms. It seems impossible to attribute our sense of self with clarity. I was adopted as a baby, and welcomed into a loving home, but I’ve always wondered about the possible effects: howContinue reading “Wednesday’s Wisdom #3: Building Belonging”

Education Exposed 2, by Samuel Strickland

Why I read it  I read the first Education Exposed book by Sam Strickland, and it resonated with me for being sensible, considered, and full of wisdom and integrity. I reflected on it here. When I heard there was a sequel, I was pleased – but would it be Terminator 2 or Speed 2? InContinue reading “Education Exposed 2, by Samuel Strickland”

Positive Psychology in a Nutshell, by Ilona Boniwell

Why I read it  My aim this year (and beyond) is to broaden my reading and to plough energy into what I can do as a person and leader to better understand what motivates people and helps them to thrive. Everything is on the table, and when I saw this book was recommended by someContinue reading “Positive Psychology in a Nutshell, by Ilona Boniwell”

Wednesday’s Wisdom #2: Expertise

Wednesday’s Wisdom is a weekly blog post about learning and leading, using the half-way point to assess what has come before, and to reflect on what to pursue and improve. It whirs noisily all day, but never springs into life. My boiler, that is. It has malfunctioned again, an annual tradition that mocks the combinationContinue reading “Wednesday’s Wisdom #2: Expertise”

Endure, by Alex Hutchinson

Why I read it – as an amateur runner, I’ve always been intrigued to understand more about the relationship between my body and mind. Some runs I glide, sometimes I trudge in treacle. Is that physiological or psychological? I can’t get under 20 minutes for my 5k personal best – is that a fitness issue, orContinue reading “Endure, by Alex Hutchinson”

No Rules Rules, by Reed Hastings and Erin Meyer

Why I read it: Aside from my Netflix addiction (closing in on 10 years now, reader), I’ve been fascinated by the platform’s business model and inner workings. Directors and producers have often commented on the freedom they have to create high-quality content with Netflix, who aren’t chasing traditional ‘ratings’ but are looking to innovate andContinue reading “No Rules Rules, by Reed Hastings and Erin Meyer”

Wednesday’s Wisdom #1: Mentors

Wednesday’s Wisdom is a weekly blog post about learning and leading. Like our own development journey, Wednesdays are an opportunity to assess what has come before, and to reflect on what to pursue and improve. Star Wars’ Luke Skywalker was hit by a classic pincer movement of contrasting styles. While Obi Wan Kenobi effused aContinue reading “Wednesday’s Wisdom #1: Mentors”

Beyond Wiping Noses, by Stephen Lane

Why I read it – I’ve been a Head of Year, Head of Sixth Form, and now lead the pastoral teams at my school as a Deputy Headteacher. As a Head of Year, I felt that I was good at the role: I built productive relationships with students and parents, was reliable for staff, and wasContinue reading “Beyond Wiping Noses, by Stephen Lane”