Publication Date: July 1, 2010
This is the remarkable story of the Hoffmann School for Individual Attention, where the principal believed in a diverse, challenging, and challenged group of students—with extraordinary results. With a definition of gifted that included all children, Ann Hoffmann embraced students that other schools had failed, and she helped them not just to learn, but to learn to love learning. Written with candor and humor by renowned arts educator (and Ann Hoffmann’s daughter) Jessica Hoffmann Davis, this portrait will resonate with anyone who has known or been a champion of children. Ann Hoffmann’s example will inspire and delight, reminding us of what matters most in education and that if we love what we do, anything is possible.
This fascinating narrative addresses the timeless features of teaching and learning, with important implications for how we think about curriculum, instruction, and classroom life. The story of the Hoffmann School is an insider’s view of a place in time that is more importantly a vision and set of beliefs that can reoccur in anyone’s classroom or adult life.
Jessica Hoffmann Davis is a cognitive developmental psychologist and founder of the Arts in Education Program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She is the author of Why Our Schools Need the Arts and Framing Education as Art: The Octopus Has a Good Day. Visit the author’s website at jessicahoffmanndavis.com.
“Teachers and parents will draw powerful lessons from this beautiful book."
—Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot, Harvard University
“As a graduate of the Hoffmann School, I was thrilled to read Jessica Hoffmann Davis's brilliant new book. Her rich language and engaging style capture the school's generous spirit and its warm atmosphere of comfort and support. Ann Hoffmann encouraged each child's individuality and interest and instinctively recognized what was needed to unlock his or her passion to learn. The Hoffmann School experience totally changed the direction of my life, opening horizons that would not have been conceivable without Ann Hoffmann's guidance.”
—Austin C. Hill, clinical psychologist in private practice, New York City