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The Big Picture: Education Is Everyone's Business Paperback – September 1, 2004

ISBN-13: 978-0871209719 ISBN-10: 0871209713

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 230 pages
  • Publisher: Association for Supervision & Curriculum Deve (September 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0871209713
  • ISBN-13: 978-0871209719
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 7 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #38,081 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 23 customer reviews
Littky demonstrates how much more effective small schools are at every level.
Wally Weet
This was a very interesting read for me; I highly recommend it to parents, teachers and anyone who is interested in alternatives to the public school system.
K. Simpson-alisca
This book opened my eyes to the endless possibilities, and opportunities of learning for students.
Kristi Hibbert

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Wally Weet on September 20, 2005
Format: Paperback
Littky's book challenges the traditional philosophy and practices of American schools. And we deserve that challenge. We are raising kids in dysfunctional schools, dysfunctional even when we believe they are working satisfactorily. At the most fundamental level the philosophy upon which the schools are based, a philosophy laid down in the Nineteenth Century designed to train people to fulfill the needs of industry, has not changed. The problem is that training is not educating. Defining the success of schools by standard tests, the method used to upgrade the dysfunctional system by No Child Left Behind only serves to make the dysfunctional system worse. America's children need a better system.

Littky, after thirty or more years of work in public schools as a principal has turned the old philosophy out the door. His objective is to lead children to love learning and that leads to radically different kinds of schools. In his schools parents are closely involved with the work in every way. Students and teachers work in small groups focusing on projects that cultivate the interests and the skills of the students. School bells do not ring interrupting the process of learning. Students open themselves to the learning process, develop confidence and the needed basic skills of writing and mathematics in the process of doing the projects that fascinate them. Learning becomes joyful. Teachers then become not loaders of information but leaders, fellow learners, who help the child develop the information necessary to the learning process. And, yes, to do this schools must be smaller than we have come to make them in the last fifty years. Huge consolidated, impersonal schools have failed. Littky demonstrates how much more effective small schools are at every level.
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Format: Paperback
This was a very interesting read for me; I highly recommend it to parents, teachers and anyone who is interested in alternatives to the public school system. I was rapidly losing my trust in the current educational system. What's most disturbing for me is all of the professionals who write about urban education, its causes and how to repair it. Often, these professionals are so far removed from the problem its incomprehensible how they can propose to interpret the real life issues that exist. Littky's common sense approach that he introduced to The Met starts with treat every child with respect; give value to their dreams and their interest. Help them discover THEIR talents. Help them find the connection in putting their talents and interest towards building a life goal. Hire only educators who embrace this vision, and recognize that as teachers they are also part of the learning experience. I was most inspired by Littky's belief that all of the children who walk through the door of The Met will graduate, will succeed and will do something great with their lives. Believing in them, makes them believe in themselves. To quote Franklin Covey "begin with the end in mind".
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By AC on April 28, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If only the education community would wake up to why American children are failing in school. This book created new concepts in how childrens lives should be a part of their education, not outside their education, and how one person can impact thousands like a wave in a pond.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By M. T. Rojek on March 7, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Wow! This is an amazing book about the Met - a charter school in Rhode Island. I can see why teachers are on waiting lists trying to work there. This is a must read for any teacher, school administrator, and parent. This guy gets it right.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By deadygirl on November 29, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was my first time ordering a used book from an Amazon affiliate and I couldn't be more pleased!! The review said the book was in fair condition, but I found that the book was in excellent condition. The price was great and they shipped my book promply. I would definitely do business with this organization again!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Diana on November 5, 2010
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This is a very good book. I would love to have my children in a school like the Met. The Stories are very interesting and very meaningful to anyone not just someone in the career of education.Well worth reading!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kristi Hibbert on December 13, 2007
Format: Paperback
This book opened my eyes to the endless possibilities, and opportunities of learning for students. It is an easy read that is hard to put down. Dennis Littky is a person that is not just talking about change in education, he is making change. He takes the focus off of the schools and puts it on the students. Littky has found that by focusing on students interest's, they are able to reignite students excitement they once had for learning. He also believes that we must act now and become involved if we plan to have an impact in these students learning opportunities, and their future. Students are encouraged in Met schools to pursue personal interests, and then a curriculum is designed around that to guide the student through their learning process.

I would highly recommend this book to any parent, teacher or administrator that wants to begin on the path to get their child or student excited about their own education.
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Dennis Littky is often heralded as a pioneer in education innovation. This short and sweet book examines his own experience with creating The Met (an urban school that rethinks learning and promotes student success). Littky comes across as approachable, realistic, and inspiring. With short anecdotes and examples scattered throughout, and a number of thought-provoking quotes, Littky outlines why education reform is a must and encourages anyone in education to rethink teaching and learning. The book isn't preachy, but is a guide for anyone interested in changing schools.
The book is based on Littky's experience, so it is not focused on research, statistics or data, but rather his own insights. Overall, it offers a great picture of Littky's educational endeavors without being self-promoting or nit-picky.
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