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Opening Minds: Using Language to Change Lives
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Top Customer Reviews
In Opening Minds, Johnston covers a wide range of issues, from more skillful ways to work with motivating students to ways of developing social intelligence (or, as he calls it, social imagination). Johnston does this in ways that hint at how he hopes others will teach. That is, he never hits us over the head with "shoulds" and "must-dos", but gives examples that help lead us to developing more thoughtful approaches.
I especially liked his chapter on praise. In it he points out how relying heavily on praise (which is a popular approach in this era of self-esteem boosting) has some downsides, such as creating an arms race around what is real praise and what is faint praise -- and ultimately keeps us in an externally-motivated rewards and punishment system. Instead, he gently leads us to see the greater value of taking a real interest in your students work. By asking questions that bring out greater depth, the student learns depth and intellectual probing is most important, and that you genuinely care; all this, without setting up a dynamic that leads the student to look for praise.Read more ›
Johnston makes a compelling argument for the social learning model. Learning to think and be a productive member of our democratic ideals is by far more beneficial for our students then focusing on test scores.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
In this relatively slim volume, Johnston includes a wealth of ideas and techniques for teaching literacy and language skills in a more just, compassionate and socially responsible... Read morePublished 2 months ago by James R. Gilligan
One of the best professional books I've read. Very current and useful in so many situations. Quick read too.Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
This book haunts me ... made me rethink telling my students and my children that they are so smart! Good to reconsider:) Great to use for avoiding the paralysis of perfectionism...Published 5 months ago by skr
Should be a required read for all parents (preferably before they have kids) and all teachers.Published 5 months ago by happymom
Peter Johnston is an amazing author. I would highly recommend this book as well as Choice Words.Published 7 months ago by T.White