Cuckoo by Nick Davies
Reviewed by Chris Baker
Head of Science at the British International School of Bucharest, Chris Baker picked up this book after seeing a rufous female common cuckoo on a recent trip to the Danube Delta and then listening to an enjoyable interview with Nick Davies on BBC Radio 4 The Life Scientific podcast during a hair-raising drive home through an unseasonal blizzard.
Kate Shepherd reviews three novels with stories that will engage and challenge young adults. The Family with Two Front Doors is based on the author’s real family while The Big Bazoohley is written in the zany style reminiscent of Roald Dahl. Words in Deep Blue is centred around a bookshop where we are drawn into the lives of the two main characters.
Third Culture Chinese
Children’s book reviewer Kate Shepherd looks at three very different stories about the experience of Chinese children. Freedom Swimmer by Wai Chim is a dramatic story for young adults, based on true events at the end of the Cultural Revolution, while two thought-provoking and beautifully illustrated picture books for younger children by Sally Rippin examine the issue of cultural identity of Chinese children living in Australia.
This is the first selection of recommended books reviewed by Kate Shepherd to be published monthly in ITM. Kate has specialised in reviewing books recommend for international schools and the IB’s PYP. Kate regularly reviews for Gleebooks, one of the oldest independent bookstores in Sydney.
The Consilium Team recommends . . . . . .
Click on each book cover below to follow the link to Amazon
All profits in support of WaterAid
by Sally Flint, illustrated by NokIsme. Review by Jan Homden
What is the family to do? It is a Saturday morning and the wi-fi is broken. Everyone is distraught except the cat and Grandpa William who saves the day by suggesting that today they do things a little bit differently.
Jan Homden reviews the 2016 edition of Prue Walsh’s innovative and influential book which provides a wealth of ideas for the creation of an inspirational outdoor leaning environment and remains as relevant today as it was when it was fist published.
The summer holidays . . . . .
A time to reflect. A time to catch up on all those things that were put on the back burner.
Time to read those books that have been bought but gathering dust on the shelves and time to read those books that have been recommended.
The Consilium team have put together their list for summer 2016. Happy Reading!
Click on the book covers below for a direct link to Amazon
Alec Ross worked as a Senior Advisor for Innovation to the former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton. Brian Ambrosio reviews his recent publication, “The Industries of the Future” with a focus on how this description of the future should be shaping education policy.
Initially ridiculed and slightly eccentric, Michael “Eddie” Edwards triumphed over adversity in his quest for ski-jumping fame at the 1988 Winter Olympics. Despite coming last, he became a hero to many and is now the subject of a recent film, reviewed for ITM by Jan Homden.
It’s the 1980s and times are hard in unpretentious Dublin. It’s the era of new romantics, punks and skinheads, with teenagers defending themselves for “looking different” as they seek a new identity and street style.
Music is influenced by bands such as; The Cure, A-ha, Duran Duran, The Clash, Spandau Ballet, The Jam and the latest Dublin boy band – ‘Sing Street’!
One man, one school . . . and a penguin
This is a true story, beautifully and simply told by Tom Michell who rescued an oil-drenched, knee-high Magellan penguin washed up on a beach at Punta del Este in Uruguay. The story is brought alive not only by Michell’s moving narrative, but also by the wonderful illustrations by Neil Baker.
With the end of term upon us, whether you are heading to sunshine or snow to celebrate the festive season, staying put and taking a well earned break, or returning home to family , it’s the perfect time to curl up with a good book.
Here are our recommendations, just click on the books below to follow the link to our review.
Vicky Hill alerts us to the publication of a new book exploring the teaching of mathematics and how best to engage students and ensure they have the best chance of success.
It was a grey, wet Saturday when we set off to the local cinema for a midday screening of ‘Song of the Sea’. In a small studio theatre that was almost half full with an audience of 26, ranging from toddler to middle aged and everything in-between, we sampled ‘cinema treats’ while waiting for the film to begin.
Teaching overseas, particularly for the first-timer, is a thrilling prospect that can also be a little daunting. A myriad of new cultural experiences await as one leaves the safe home port and ventures forth to a new country, new home and new school. “Teaching Overseas: An Insider’s Perspective”, by, Kent M. Blakeney, is packed with information that will help alleviate any lingering anxieties and is a very entertaining read. Tony Richards reviews this new publication.
Documentaries have undergone a renaissance in the past decade in terms of becoming more involving and cinematic. Movie buff and regular podcast reviewer Sue Page finds the recent biopic “Amy” an absorbing and intimate portrait of a prodigious talent and an all too short life.
On my friend’s recommendation I took the book ‘Us’ written by David Nicholls to the desk in Waterstones. The girl smiled and remarked, “Good choice “. With reviews such as ‘A perfect book’ from the Independent and ‘I honestly can’t imagine loving a novel much more,’ from The Sunday Times, I was ready to turn the page.
Dr Eugene Heimler developed an innovative and unique form of psychotherapy, the Heimler Method of Social Functioning, which has enabled countless individuals to find meaning and new direction in their lives and turn frustration and disengagement into creativity and involvement. Peter Hudson provides a very personal review of Dr Heimler’s account of some of the experiences that helped mould his now widely used counselling techniques.
Swept along on the initial excitement of travel and working overseas it is tempting to leave financial planning for another day. Sadly for some such procrastination will result in later regret and financial uncertainty or even instability. Erik Richardson discovers a book that offers hope and sound financial advice for those working overseas; a book that could secure your financial future.
Discover or rediscover the genius of arguably the greatest female singer-songwriter of the last 50 years
If you are planning to be in New York or London in the near future and are looking for an out of the ordinary, entertaining evening at the theatre, seriously consider BEAUTIFUL: The Carole King Musical. Be prepared to be entertained as the curtain rises on this musical version of a wonderful artist’s life and career.
HOW TEACHING WORKS (AND HOW TO TEACH IT TO EVERYONE)
Delice Scotto looks at the latest publication from Elizabeth Green, co-founder of CHALKBEAT, a-not–for-profit educational news site in the US. Building a Better Teacher looks at the hot topic of teacher effectiveness and analyses the debates that have engrossed the United States over the past few decades between educational reformers and the teacher unions, between teacher autonomy and teacher accountability. Green then looks into how the best teachers “are built”.
What is it about Hunger Games that holds such an appeal for younger movie-goers and especially girls? It’s not just the action and the glamour. In reviewing the latest iteration of the franchise, Sci-Fi author Joel Shepherd looks at what teenagers find so compelling about the Hunger Games, a series which takes its predominantly young audience seriously and asks them to think.
Empathy: a handbook for revolution, published in the US as Empathy, why it matters and how to get it.
Roman Krznaric, Rider Books, 2014
The importance of empathy
For philosopher Roman Krznaric, western society has painted itself into something of a corner. The prevailing political and social orthodoxy of our time is rooted in competition, the needs of the individual and introspective obsessions.
Published by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS), 1987, now available as The 5 Core Propositions.
I found this short tract when I inherited the contents of the bookshelves in my office at Enka Schools in 2002. It lingered there for a little longer, but then I picked it up one afternoon and read it from cover to cover in an hour (it’s 21 pages long). I was fascinated by the unambiguously simple title and I was not disappointed by what it had to say. In making the case for rigorous and thoughtful practice, it makes five propositions:
With the centenary of the Great War upon us, this short allegorical story (or is it a memoir?) is particularly poignant. It can be read, used and enjoyed in so many ways. A young man visits a wild area in the south of France in 1910 and encounters a solitary shepherd who collects and plants acorns.
Margot Morrell & Stephanie Capparell, 2002 (first published 1998)
Shackleton’s Way is an excellent read for any educational leader who wants to “Sharpen the Saw”, as Stephen Covey would have it.
Picture the scene; an old people’s home in Sweden where preparations are in full swing to celebrate the 100th birthday of one of the residents, Allan Karlsson. He, fortunately, has other ideas! As the story unfolds we learn that Allan who enjoys his vodka, was a dynamite expert with a chequered past that included the making of the atom bomb and becoming friends with Joseph Stalin, Winston Churchill and Chairman Mao.
ITM reviewed Saroo Brierley’s amazing story in 2015 when Brian Ambrosio took a look at his autobiographical story – A Long Way Home – and predicted it would be a box office hit. Lion is now being released around the word in 2017 to widespread acclaim! This is Brian’s original review.
A hurtling journey across our planet with short pauses for breath between the thirty-six stops. From India to Zimbabwe to Sumatra to Chechnya and onward. At each stop we encounter characters whose stories play upon the emotions. Some are funny, some poignant, some hopeful, some heart-breakingly sad, but all are fascinating.