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Ideas for 'must read' books suitable for someone new to smt

Discussion in 'Senior Leadership Team' started by leadlearner, Nov 20, 2011.

  1. leadlearner

    leadlearner New commenter

    If you want a quick over view of lots of different topics which you sound like you do, I suggest the Teachers Pocket Book series:
    www.teacherspocketbook. I have just read the Lesson Observation one and the Coaching one, they are slight books but give a useful overview - but you will then need to follow up with other reading to deepen knowledge. Good Luck - I think it is good that you admit that you don't know everything and that you are keen to improve. [​IMG]
  2. Hello,
    I'm not in a leadership position but I would consider myself well-read after a recent Masters degree in Education and completing the SSAT Developing Leaders programme. My favourites are....
    The Education Debate - Stephen J Ball
    Learning in Contemporary Culture - Will Curtis and Alice Pettigrew
    Childrens Minds - Margaret Donaldson
    Radical Reforms - Christopher Chapman and Helen Gunter
    The Psychology of Education - Martyn Long
    Psychology at Work - Peter Warr
    Pedadgogy of the Oppressed - Paulo Freire
    Tell it like it is: How our Schools Fail Black Children - Brian Richardson
    Educational Failure and Working Class White Children - Gillian Evans
    Teaching and Learning in Diverse and Inclusive Classrooms - Gill Richards and Felicity Armstrong
    All excellent books - if you only buy one then I would suggest Stephen Ball. Wide reading is very important as a leader - historically though there has been a huge gulf between educational research/literature/evidence and what actually happens in schools.
  3. msworld

    msworld New commenter

    I found Frankenstein's Manager by BIll McAneny helpful.
    Great tips about working with different personalities and finding your own leadership style.
    Very easy to read, too.
  4. If you are receiving lots of training, why not ask the trainers for suggestions. They will have more specific knowledge of the school you are working in and the day-to-day situations that you will be faced with, therefore being more qualified to offer you better advice.
    I read a lot, but tend to read online publications so that I am up to date with current trends in my area. Subscribe to the TES and read it from cover to cover every week. If you see anything interesting about your stage or area of responsibility, google it and you'll find lots of different things to read - government reviews, publications, articles. I work in Early Years, and have requested that the school subscribes to magazines such as nurseryworld. I then make time to read it from cover to cover. I cut out articles of specific interest and file them. If an article is pertinent to my team, I photocopy it and put it in their pigeon holes. It's up to them whether they read it or not, but it's up to me as their leader to pass on useful and interesting information. I also email links to the team occasionally if I read something that may have an impact on our practice.
    I find online reading a much better way of keeping myself up to date than by reading book after book. After all, it apparently takes up to 2 years for a book to be published - it'll be out of date as soon as it hits the shelves. (I heard this when Encyclopedia Britannica announced they would now only publish online)
    You may also want to consider a different radio station to keep you company on the way to work. If you can bear it, listen to Radio 4. Their news programme in the morning is not only informative but covers important issues that will help keep you abreast of current issues and developments.
  5. Focus on the leadership side of things first - see the wood, not the trees. If you get the big picture clear, you'll have a better idea of the how and why of such areas as data, lesson observations and CPD.

    Good books on leadership:

    Burt Nanus, Visionary Leadership (not a book about education but a great book on leadership more generally)

    Thomas Sergiovanni, Leadership: What's in it for schools?
    Good books on educational ideas/phillosophy of learning:

    Guy Claxton, What's the point of school

    Paul Kelley, Making Minds

    Tim Brighouse and David Woods, What makes a good school now?
    All very readable, down to earth and practical.

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