Instructional Leadership in Action

What we are reading this spring

by UWCEL on Mar 30, 2017

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Spring break is upon us. For some that means a final chance to enjoy the lingering holdovers of winter, and others a chance to seek out the sun. For us its an opportunity to take in the annual magic of cherry blossoms on the University of Washington campus. It's also a great time to catch up on reading!

Here is a list of three books that our CEL faculty think might inspire you as you head into the final leg of the school year:


Tell Me So I Can Hear You: A Developmental Approach to Feedback for Educators

by Eleanor Drago-Severson and Jessica Blum-DeStefano  (Harvard Education Press)

School leaders recognize the importance of feedback and are always trying to figure out how to deliver feedback in ways that improve performance. They often wonder why feedback is not well-received or why changes in practice do not occur. This book, by Eleanor Drago-Severson and Jessica Blum-DeStefano, using real-life examples, gives leaders strategies designed to build relationships and communicate in ways that support improvement and build a culture on continuous learning. — Sandy Austin


How To Create a Culture of Achievement in Your School and Classroom

by Douglas Fisher, Nancy Frey and Ian Pumpian  (ASCD)

A school’s culture represents the values, beliefs, vision and norms of the school, all of which help to form the school’s identity. Culture should nurture and nourish the work of teaching and learning. The goal, of course, is a culture of achievement for each and every student. Culture is such an important element of the school that it should not be left to chance; but rather, it should be planned strategically. One of the most important roles of school leaders, therefore, is to develop and sustain a culture that helps to fulfill the mission of the school. In this book, Fisher, Frey and Pumpian identify five pillars of school culture, specific organizational practices that build culture, and tools the reader can access to support the important work of building culture. — June Rimmer



Peak: Secrets From the New Science of Expertise

by Anders Ericsson and Robert Pool  (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

As educational leaders, our primary resource for closing the achievement gap is people. Thus, our best strategy moving forward is to help the people we work with improve their performance. This book by Anders Ericsson and Robert Pool shows that performance is not solely based on innate talent, but rather through practice we can all get better. A great read and a challenge to each of us to nurture the excellence inside of us and others we work with. Max Silverman


For more inspiration and insights from the field, check out our CEL experts on our blog— just click on their name!

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Topics: Educational Leadership

About the author: UWCEL

At the Center for Educational Leadership we partner with courageous leaders in classrooms, schools and the systems that support them to eliminate educational inequities by creating cultures of rigorous teaching, learning and leading. Our vision is transformed schools empowering all students regardless of background to create limitless futures for themselves, their families, their communities, and the world.

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