With the regular school year ending, a trip to Greece, and starting to teach a new term at the university – I was slammed in June, but I did manage to meet my “three books a month” goal.
The Lathe of Heaven by Ursula K. Le Guin – I can’t believe that I had never heard of this book. A sci-fi book from the 70s based in Portland, Oregon and I’ve never read it? HOW? Without spoiling the plot, you have the main character, George Orr, who has discovered that his dreams are altering reality so he seeks the help of a doctor who ends up manipulating the dreams. There were times when I couldn’t read this book fast enough, and many other times where their existential dialogue was just too much for me. How many times do we need to discuss the precarious existence of man?!
It’s a great book, unique and strange (and based in my hometown!), but it’s not quite the escapism I was looking for.
Restoring Opportunity – It’s hard for me to believe that there are people out there who honestly think that kids have an equal playing field in education (and life), but they’re out there… This book goes into the research of what is happening (and not happening) with our students of color and students in poverty. For me, it’s a dry read, but you can’t ignore the evidence.
What I don’t particularly like about this text is that it reads like a college textbook in that it’s full of research, but I didn’t find it to be much of a practical guide for an educator.
Everyday Anti Racism – I love this book. It’s super short essays and excerpts from a massive amount of experts in the field, and the final section is straight up practical strategies teachers can use with their students. My pre-service teachers that are reading this for my class, however, are experiencing a lot of displeasure with the text. I can’t yet say if it’s because the topic makes them uncomfortable, they don’t yet have enough context as newbies, or they are just sick of homework – but personally I recommend this one for all my teacher friends. It’s a hefty book, but super digestible because each section is short and to the point.