Opal School closed in 2021. You can continue to access these resources for free at teachingpreschoolpartners.org/resource-library/.

Join our book club?

Join our book club?

We believe that educators—like children—have a vast capacity for deep dives of mind, heart, and spirit. Their thoughts are “ample and greedy”; they seek substantive questions and complexity. Their work is challenging and exhilarating, and demands their full intellectual and emotional attention. Educators deserve—and are sustained by—professional learning that strengthens their development as thinkers, researchers, innovators, and constructors of knowledge…
We believe that new stories are necessary, stories that [in the words of Peter Moss] “offer hope that another world is possible, a world that is more equal, democratic and sustainable, a world where surprise and wonder, diversity and complexity find their rightful place in early childhood education, indeed all education…. [that reveals education’s] potential to amaze and surprise, to invoke wonder and passion, to emancipate and experiment.”

Ann Pelo and Margie Carter, From Teaching to Thinking: A Pedagogy for Reimagining Our Work

At Opal School, we love to read. Reading all sorts of books – with children and each other – deepens our understanding of our lives and the lives of others. Reading other scholars’ work – about creativity, culture, political struggle, collaboration, neuroscience, the mind, the past and present – offers us new understandings about the work we do with children. Doing that reading together allows the construction of ideas that extends beyond reading on our own.

We’re excited to invite all of you into that learning community. We asked for input into our first text, and the overwhelming choice was Ann Pelo and Margie Carter’s From Teaching to Thinking: A Pedagogy for Reimagining Our Work. It’s a beautiful, provocative book that we are hungry to dig into with all of you, full of implications to our work across educational settings.

We’ve never done a book club like this before before, but we hope you’re game to try it with us! The first step, of course, is to get yourself a copy of the book.

You can buy the Kindle version through Amazon here. The publisher has a great deal for you: Purchase the Kindle book and email your receipt details to them and they will ship you a hard copy free within the US once it is back in stock (they think it’ll arrive in January). The cost of shipping means they can’t make the same offer to folks who live outside the US, but those readers can submit their receipt for a $19 discount for the Exchange Live Digital Magazine.

While supplies last, you can buy a hard copy of the book directly from the publisher here – and, if you use coupon code OPALFTT, they’ll provide a 20% discount.

If you are outside the US and want the print copy, you may find other distributors that will be able to ship more directly (our friends in Canada can head to ParentBooks, for example.)

Once you have the book, we’ll start digging into it! We’ll be posting discussion invitations over the coming weeks through our social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) using the hashtag #opalschoolbookclub. You can spark conversations as well! If you prefer not to use any of those social media platforms, the comments field on this post will serve as another convening point.

After a month of reading, we’ll host a face-to-face conversation using Zoom November 5 at 5:00 Pacific Time. That conversation will include Opal School staff, readers from far and wide, and two very special guests: the authors themselves, Ann Pelo and Margie Carter. We’ve loved Ann’s work for a long time – from Rethinking Early Childhood Education through The Language of Art and The Goodness of Rain, and reflect fondly on her time at the 2015 Opal School Summer Symposium. We haven’t had as much of an opportunity to engage with Margie – but we love this book and hope that it sparks new connections for all of us.

Let’s read!

6 responses to “Join our book club?

  1. We in San Diego are also excited to join this discussion. Thank you! The San Diego Reggio Roundtable!

  2. We are looking forward to participating in this book club! Thank you!
    -Kids Country Day School
    Akron, Ohio

  3. Hello! I’ve been to Opal twice, from Northern Alberta Canada. I have the book and am reading it now. I struggle with connecting my beliefs and joy of teaching within the limits of a public school in Canada. I’m hoping this book will give me more insights into my thinking about teaching and reignite my investigations. Thanks!

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