Foreword by: Pasi Sahlberg
Publication Date: October 28, 2022
If we teach in the way that human brains learn, both students and their teachers will thrive! This book aligns evidence from the learning sciences on how and what students need to learn with classroom practice (pre-K–12). It demonstrates, with hands-on examples, how a change in educational mindset (rather than in curriculum) can improve student outcomes on both standardized tests and a breadth of 21st-century skills. Written collectively by classroom teachers, administrators, parents, and learning scientists, this book shows readers how to co-construct and reimagine an optimal educational system. Making Schools Work offers three case studies of schools, including a statewide system, that are all realizing a 6 Cs approach to learning focused on collaboration, communication, content, critical thinking, creative innovation, and confidence. The text documents the ever-evolving implementation process, as well as outcomes and the ongoing work of stakeholders. Readers can use this resource to create an education for all children that is culturally responsive, inclusive, effective, and fun.
Making Schools Work is not an ordinary book about re-imagining education. It is a theory, a plan, an implementation strategy, and a series of case studies to show you just how to change your educational mindset.
Kathy Hirsh-Pasek is a professor of psychology at Temple University and a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. Roberta Michnick Golinkoff is the Unidel H. Rodney Sharp Professor of Education at the University of Delaware. Kimberly Nesbitt is an associate professor in the Department of Human Development and Family Studies at the University of New Hampshire. Carol Lautenbach is assistant superintendent for teaching and learning design in the Godfrey-Lee Public Schools (Wyoming, MI). Elias Blinkoff is a graduate student in developmental psychology at Temple University. Ginger Fifer is a past teacher and school administrator at Friends’ Central School (Wynnewood, PA).
“Most of us agree that it is critical at this moment in time to reimagine what school could be. This reimagination must be informed by the best available science and built on current educational wisdom found in our schools. This book does just that and makes clear that more playful learning across the K–12 school system would be the most natural way to help all students learn the 21st-century knowledge and skills they need in life.”
—From the Foreword by Pasi Sahlberg, author of Finnish Lessons 3.0: What Can the World Learn from Educational Change in Finland? and professor of education, Southern Cross University, Lismore, Australia
“The 6 Cs are both common sense and utterly revolutionary. This authoritative guide not only synthesizes the modern science of learning and motivation but also shows how it can be put into practice now. A must-read for any educator who has wondered whether there is a better way to make schools work.”
—Angela Duckworth, Rosa Lee and Egbert Chang Professor, University of Pennsylvania
“In Making Schools Work, scientists, teachers, and administrators bring deeper learning to life. Inclusive and culturally responsive, this book takes big ideas like 21st-century skills and shows what they look like in practice. A critical guide for those interested in understanding how to transform our industrial-era structures into next-generation schools and systems that bring passion, purpose, play, and deep learning for students and adults.”
—Jal Mehta, professor, Harvard University; author, In Search of Deeper Learning
“The authors connect the dots between a remarkably broad and interesting array of studies and bring to life vivid concrete examples of real classrooms. Making Schools Work shows what can happen when children like what they are learning and teachers know what they are doing. This book provides a blueprint for anyone who wants their classroom to flourish.”
—Susan Engel, senior lecturer in psychology, Williams College; author, The Intellectual Lives of Children
“This is exactly the book we need right now (actually, we needed it years ago). Our models of schooling are simply not up to equipping students for the tasks of the 21st century. The authors make the case for schooling that is relevant, active, and aligned to what we know about the development of children and youth. The team presents what this model looks like in real classrooms in which students are fully engaged, their talents and interests recognized and developed, and their teachers energized and valued. This is truly a must-read for every educator, policymaker, and school board member.”
—Robert C. Pianta, Batten Bicentennial Professor of Early Childhood Education, University of Virginia
“Making Schools Work shows how to apply the science of learning to prepare young people to navigate uncertainty, shape meaningful careers, and solve the increasingly complex challenges facing our planet and society. It is a wonderful resource for educators looking for guidance and examples about developing students who can shape a better world for themselves and all of us.”
—Wendy Kopp, CEO and co-founder, Teach For All; founder, Teach For America