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Resource Reviews
21st Century Skills: Learning for Life in
Our Times, by Bernie Trilling and Charles
Fadel, is a guide for parents, teachers, adminis-
trators, and policy makers for helping students
succeed in school, work, and citizenship in this
century. It offers insights for integrating core
knowledge (math, science, language, history,
etc.) with contemporary themes such as digi-
tal literacy, critical thinking, problem solving,
leadership, and adaptability. The first part of the
book examines a bit of educational history as
well as future jobs and careers students may be
moving into. It also looks at the converging pres-
sures on education today and
suggests strategies for coping
with them. Part 2 describes
21st-century skills and the clearly enough described to be used as fodder
framework developed by the for your next math challenge. “This book is all
Partnership for 21st Century about giving parents and others the knowledge
Skills. Part 3 shares practi- of good ways to work in schools and homes,
cal applications and research so that we can start improving our children’s
that supports these methods. and our country’s futures.” This is a smart,
This is a clear and concise accessible, outstanding text that will help you
guide that will help individual discover your greater ability to connect with
teachers, schools, or districts and teach math.
initiate a responsive and com- What’s Math Got to Do with It? Penguin,
prehensive style of teaching 2008. 273 pages. $24.95. http://www
with the future in mind.
21st Century Skills:
Learning for Life in Our Times. Jossey Bass, Educating the Net Generation, by Bob
2009. 176 pages. $27.95. 800-225-5945. http:// Pletka, looks at the particular needs and abilities of the Net generation, kids who have
grown up in technologically rich environ-
What’s Math Got to Do with It?, by Jo ments. High School dropout rates are rising,
Boaler, examines the disparity between the math with one of three students nationally quitting
of the world and the math of our classrooms. school. This generation has a great tendency to
The author proposes that this travesty is one disengage, or “check out.” How can teachers
cause of the placement of the U.S. far down the work with these characteristics to the great-
list of excellence in math and science compared est benefit? This book examines differences
to other countries throughout the world. rather in characteristics of the Net generation, their
than suggest a polarized approach (we must generation X parents, and Baby-Boomer
return to the basics, or we must only teach using grandparents. It also delves into why many stu-
reformed methods), she draws on extensive per- dents resist formalized education. Interviews
sonal research to describe successful scenarios. with teens and parents are included, as well as
Both core content and process are explored in recommendations for changes in school policy
programs that often integrate the two. While the and suggestions regarding the financial invest-
book discusses general trends and pedagogy, ment necessary to implement these changes.
it does so through specific examples that are There is an inventory and checklist for parents,
Page 20 • Connect © synergy learning • 800-769-6199 • January/February 2010
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