Tag Archives: new books

Teacher Summer Reading: Learn Like Pirate

(First published at the Tarrant Center for Innovative Education blog)

Something about this book title and summer reading fits perfectly. The open ocean, pirates, and fierce independence. I’m hoping you have a bit of time to settle into some reading for fun and some that inspires you in the classroom to have students take on more leadership and develop their own independence.

You know when you pick up a book and it just clicks? Learn Like a Pirate, by Paul Solarz is just that kind of book. As a teacher I have been trying to develop ways for students to take more leadership and ownership in the classroom (and beyond). Paul Solarz takes this to a new level– and I wish I had this book years ago. It is, in short, a guidebook for how to give your students voice, choice, leadership and independence in the classroom. The book gives very doable ways for students to take the lead in their own educations– to create classroom environments can foster community, life-long, engaged learning.

learn like a piriate

Cliff Notes Version:

(aka transformative practices outlined in the book)

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The Order of the Trees (idea babies, rejection, and a policy)

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(This is a speech I made at the official launch of my middle grade fiction book on May 1, 2015, called The Order of the Trees. I feel so lucky that all these families came to talk about reading, ideas, and writing!)

I’m so excited and thrilled to see you all here. Thank you for making the time to come. It is truly an amazing community in which to live and work. I am very thankful.

Now about this book. You see, I have always written. In journals, late at night, while waiting, observing the world. I started writing for kids about 15 years ago. Over the course of that time I wrote, edited, and sent out work. I received many rejections. Some hand written, lovely and kind, but still rejections. I won’t pretend they didn’t hurt. But I have developed a policy.

The world will tell you NO. They will tell you all the problems with your ideas. The world is very good at that.

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