A New York Times Notable Book
"A must-read book for every American teacher and taxpayer." Amanda Ripley, author of The Smartest Kids in the WorldLaunched with a hugely popular New York Times Magazine cover story, Building a Better Teacher sparked a national conversation about teacher quality and established Elizabeth Green as a leading voice in education. Green's fascinating and accessible narrative dispels the common myth of the "natural-born teacher" and introduces maverick educators exploring the science behind their art. Her dramatic account reveals that great teaching is not magic, but a skilla skill that can be taught. Now with a new afterword that offers a guide on how to identifyand supportgreat teachers, this provocative and hopeful book "should be part of every new teacher’s education" (Washington Post).
|Publisher:||Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.|
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.10(d)|
About the Author
Elizabeth Green is cofounder, CEO, and editor in chief ofChalkbeat, a nonprofit education news organization. A former Spencer Fellow at the Columbia School of Journalism, she has written for New York Times Magazine and other publications.
Table of Contents
Prologue: How to be a Teacher (Part One) 1
1 Founding Fathers 23
2 A Teacher is Born 45
3 Spartan Tragedy 80
4 Knead and Rise 113
5 An Educational Start-Up 150
6 Lemov's Taxonomy 174
7 The Discipline of Discipline 196
8 The Power of an Inside Joke 230
9 The Holy Grail 253
10 A Profession of Hope 280
Epilogue: How to be a Teacher (Part Two) 314
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This is a book to guide our policy. It has the potential to change the direction of education reform. It is well researched, with details about different approaches to improving education. Some people may be put off by positive aspects of approaches they dislike, but I find the treatment of each approach to be objective, with the weaknesses mentioned after the strengths. Elizabeth's main point is that teaching is not an innate talent but a skill that can be learned, and that we need to put more resources and effort into teaching that skill to current and future teachers. She shows what teaching is like with lesson descriptions, and how teaching can be improved.
I found myself taking notes as I read, and when the book was due back to the library, and I hadn't finished it, I had to buy it. Another good read in this genre is Teacher Wars.
One reviewer on this site expressed concern that the book focuses too much on charter schools. Perhaps it does but it seems clear that the author would LOVE to see better teacher preparation for ALL teachers, whether in public, private, or charter schools. The book does an excellent job making the case why that should happen. The end of the book is especially about evaluating teachers using their students' test scores (not a practice she approves of), and alternatives to that practice. This topic is, of course, highly relevant to public school teachers. Don't be distracted by whether the vignettes are of charter school teachers or regular public school teachers. The book is well written, well conceived, and important. - Andy
I was disappointed. As a public school teacher at my local community school (not a public charter school), this book became increasingly frustrating to read. There is a lot of bashing of public schools, and midway through the book we're taken on Seneca's teaching journey, a TFA alumna, as well as Doug's, one of the founders of APR charter school who has no prior experience in education. If you're like me, a non-charter school, public school teacher, I would not recommend this book. Enjoyed the sections about math and the teaching practices in Japan.
Painstakingly researched, scholarly, and beautifully written. A must read for all who care about the future of education in the United States. Green's book explains why so many teachers do not succeed in doing their jobs and offers hope to the profession by highlighting and describing the strategies used by those who do succeed.