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Uncommon Core: 25 Ways to Help Your Child Succeed In a Cookie Cutter Educational System Paperback – April 22, 2015
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About the Author
Writer. Teacher. Dreamer.Pauline Hawkins is an adjunct English teacher at Great Bay Community College in Portsmouth, NH. Before that, she taught English for 11 years at Liberty High School in Colorado Springs, CO. Since 2012 Pauline has chronicled her unique perspective on life, lessons learned through her son's battle with cancer, and her desire and plan to reform public education. She currently blogs for Huffington Post and The Top 12 Global Teacher Bloggers. Pauline lives in NH. She has three children - two adult daughters and a ten-year-old son - and a twelve-pound bodyguard, her Chihuahua Chico.
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All throughout Uncommon Core, Hawkins astutely takes a holistic approach to education, attempting to nourish each student’s particular abilities, pushing some, comforting others, and always with an eye toward creating fully functional, stable, independent, educated adults. Many chapters show how difficult a task that can be. High school teachers must do their best to enlighten while constantly facing the stormy dramas of teen-agers – trying to instruct in a hurricane of angst, passion, defiance, boredom, depression, fear, and bewilderment. Hawkins’ mission, indeed that of all teachers and parents, is complex and delicate, requiring patience, kindness and psychological insight. As Hawkins shows so clearly, it is so much more than rote-memorization lesson plans for standardized tests.
Soulful and wise, Uncommon Core is an important read for all parents or teachers who want to prepare themselves or their children for the current public school experience.
Ms. Hawkins has written a wonderfully interesting and spot on book from her purview as an educator, a mother, and a mentor to all the students that walked through her classroom doors. Uncommon Core is filled with professional, parental, and personal insights that beg to be heard and utilized on a much bigger stage.
Uncommon Core is set up as a series of vignettes, each with a teaching lesson or moment for raising and teaching our children in a way that maximizes every child’s potential. It is written to set all children up for the best possible future as thriving young adults in our society.
This book is a uniquely grounded, no non-sense, and common sense read and written by a truly passionate and caring educator. As a student of Ms. Hawkins at the college level, I can personally attest to her words that are written amongst the pages of Uncommon Core. Ms. Hawkins truly carries out her experiences and her passion for education in every classroom she enters. As a wonderfully brave and cutting edge education advocate, she belongs in the bigger discussions in our country on the future of public education reform in the United States.
Hawkins shares personal stories and provides practical recommendations on how teachers, parents, and students can work together to achieve educational success. Pauline's definition of educational success goes well beyond class rankings based on standardized testing. Students need more than what the current system provides. They need the "soft skills" that will enable them to be successful in all aspects of life since life is rarely black and white with only one right answer. Pauline learned that important lesson during her many years in the classroom. Now she is sharing that lesson in Uncommon Core.