What We’re Reading

Bringing Innovation to School

By Suzie Boss

Short-medium, journalist reporting/observational format, lots of ideas and examples from K-12.

Creating Innovators

By Tony Wagner

Well-known author, lots of interviews with young innovators about schooling, some examples and specific suggestions. Nice treatment of Olin College of Engineering.

Innovator’s DNA

By Clayton Christensen

Not written for educators per se, more for corporate, but a readable, fascinating overview of the five core skills of innovators: Associating, Questioning, Observing, Networking, Experimenting.

Myth of the Muse: Supporting Virtues That Inspire Creativity

By Douglas Reeves

Recent book, nicely combats idea that creativity is innate, offers some specific suggestions for mindsets requried and techniques for cultivating creativity in schools.

Invent to Learn

By Stager and Martinez

One of the best overviews with many very specific strategies for maker spaces and learning environments that support “making”.

Where Good Ideas Come From

By Steven Johnson

Not for educators specifically, but wonderful overview of what it means to be an innovator sweeping across natural and human history and what kinds of environments and actions support and promote innovation.

Make Space: Setting the Stage for Creative Collaboration

By Dooley and Witthoft

From Stanford School, a comprehensive and amazingly illustrated guide to design thinking and learning environments.

Launch: Using Design Thinking to Boost Creativity and Bring Out the Maker in Every Student

By Spencer and Juliani

Very recently released.

Design Thinking for Educators Toolkit

By Stanford DT K12 Center

Available for free online, about 75 pages, good intro/overview with some specific examples; partially authored by independent school educators at Riverdale Country School.

Setting the Standard for Project-Based Learning

By Suzie Boss

One of the more recent and most accessible resources from Buck Institute for Education (www.bie.org); lays out the research evidence and best practices for project based learning; also discusses how PBL can and should be connected to authentic local issues and impact.

Work that matters: The teacher’s guide to project-based learning

By High Tech High

Free PDF, about 60 pages, useful overview case study.

New Culture of Learning

By J.S. Brown

Short, essay format, inspirational.

Mindstorms: Children, Computers, and Powerful Ideas

By Seymour Papert

Seminal work, originally published in 1980, discussing the revolutionary possibility that using computers can have a positive effect on the way we think and learn.

The Genius Hour Guidebook: Fostering Passion, Wonder, and Inquiry in the Classroom,

By Zvi Krebs

A practical application about getting started with inquiry learning in the classroom, geared toward middle school, but easy to tailor to younger grades.