Seven Must-Read Books About Education
“In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you.” Mortimer Jerome Adler
Education is considered a basic human skill that is necessary to earn a livelihood. Without education, you cannot survive in the present society and having a grasp on what you learn through the knowledge that is imparted to you usually molds the life of people. The list features a selection of books which will be surely worthy of your time. As the above mentioned quote suggests, the list is aimed at quality rather than quantity.
1) The Shallows: What the Internet is doing to our Brains (Nicholas Carr)
Nicolas Carr is a technology based writer and he is best known for his sensational article “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” which was featured as the cover story in the Atlantic Monthly in 2008. Though an intriguing title, the book gained much renown when it gained a spot amongst the finalists for the 2011 Pulitzer Prize in General Nonfiction. Nicolas Carr describes the internet as a medium based on interruptions and it is changing how we work and think. The author has written numerous books in relation to technology and most of them illustrate the negative effects of information overload and 24/7 connectivity.
2) Thinking, Fast and Slow (Daniel Kahneman)
The book gained much fame after it got the number two spot in The Top 75 New York Times Best-Selling Education Books for 2013. The book has received numerous awards including Winner of the National Academy of Sciences Best Book Award in 2012, The Globe and Mail’s Best Books of the Year 2011, The Economist’s 2011 Books of the Year, and The Wall Street Journal’s Best Nonfiction Books of the Year 2011. The book is surely a good read and once you start, it will surely keep you glued to it.
3) I am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up For Education and Was Shot By the Taliban (Christina Lamb and Malala Yousafzai)
The young woman Malala Yousafzai, both the subject and title of this book, made headlines in 2012 when shot in the head by a Taliban gunman for her activism in education rights for women. Malala began sharing her views at the age of eleven in 2009 when she began writing a blog for the BBC under a pseudonym. Her blog documented life under Taliban rule and her perspective on women’s suppression and lack of access to education. For women living in the West, it is hard to imagine being barred from pursuing educational opportunities; it is something that is taken for granted. Ironically, I am Malala raises awareness of women’s right to education in the Middle East yet it is banned in Pakistan.
4) Burning the Page: The Ebook Revolution and the Future of Reading (Jason Merkoski)
It has been generally observed that skilled reading is on the decline and the recent trend of e-books doesn’t help the cause at all. The book is quite interesting since it is part history, part memoir of the author’s experience as a member of Amazon’s development team for the Kindle e-reader. It’s available in e-book format and paperback.
5) The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail -but Some Don’t (Nate Silver)
Though this work is not specific to education, it’s geared more to business-minded readers, yet it is so very applicable in the realms of education, more so with the advancement of our digital applications and devices. A must read!
6) A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change (Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown)
The book is primarily designed to help teachers cultivate the imagination of the students. The book is also meant to inspire and challenge the teachers as well. New Culture of Learning is another one that made the New York Times 2013 list. The process carried out by the authors in the publication and writing of this book is as interesting as the topic of the book. Brown and Thomas describe the publishing approach as self-styled, essentially mirroring the learning experiences outlined in A New Culture of Learning.
7) Spreadable Media: Creating Value and Meaning in a Networked Culture (Henry Jenkins, Sam Ford and Joshua Green)
Spreadable Media happens to be part of the PostMilliential Pop Series; a series that “strives to publish work that re-imagines scholarship on popular culture in the age of trans-nationalism, convergence and globalization. “ This book will surely be worth your time and you will be inspired by this book.