Most helpful positive review
22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
Consider the author's purpose
on April 5, 2012
It is dry material but it is currently used as a checklist to evaluate teachers. So it isn't going to be exciting beach reading nor is it necessarily designed to inspire the passion to teach. From what I hear, a school district could do far worse for a teacher evaluation instrument and many are doing worse. I'm sure a lot of painstaking effort went into the book and it is probably very valuable as a text in college classes. It attempts to include every single component that is fundamental to effective teaching. I completed the educational games component for my formal evaluation and my students were very enthusiastic. It gives you a framework. I tweaked my lesson and found a game that taught the specific skill. So his framework provides for rather than precludes creativity. You bring the creativity. The problem is there is a climate in our state of distrust. The State Dept. of Education is favoring charter schools while it demands increasingly burdensome measures of accountability and demands for individualized instruction from public school teachers. There have been numerous unfunded mandates coming down. So when Marzano's or any evaluation method is supported by the DOE, teachers are suspicious. There is quite a bit of common sense in the book, and this has been criticized by teachers, but sometimes it is good to have the back-up- especially if you have been teaching for a while and DOE demands have often not been about common sense, but rather politicians trying to please voters. (Blame the teachers for anything and everything). This increasingly negative climate isn't Marzano's fault and so far, I don't see anything adverse about the new evaluations based upon his methods. But although my initial reaction was negative, i.e., we are sent this as a "love letter" from the DOE, I think their war on public education may backfire. I don't think Marzano wrote this book with the DOE's political agenda in mind. He really just supports good teaching. If you follow the book, you have a good path through the political noise. However, much depends on how it is applied. Public school teachers are currently enduring a negative punitive environment. The author's intentions could be twisted to serve a political purpose. Hopefully, that won't happen!