Read With Us! Inventology

Read With Us! Inventology

Recently, we invited folks from around the world to join us in an Opal School Book Club. We shared insights from Ann Pelo and Margie Carter’s From Teaching to Thinking on Facebook and Twitter and wrapped up with an online conversation with the authors. We found enough enthusiasm and energy to try again.

This round, we’re hoping that you’ll read Pagan Kennedy’s Inventology: How We Dream Up Things That Change The World with us. We’ve been inspired by how the book describes the process of bringing change to the world. Although it’s not explicitly written for teachers, youth workers, or caregivers, we think it has real implications to our work with children: indeed, the book left a clear mark on our new Framework for Inspiring Inventiveness.

Our experience with the last round of the book club left us eager to try some different approaches this time:

From Teaching to Thinking was a book in limited supply (we sold out all remaining copies!) and with a price point that challenged many potential readers. Inventology comes at a lower cost and seems to be well stocked. Here’s hoping that leads to greater access and participation.

We valued the beautiful, thoughtful, direct attention From Teaching to Thinking focused on our work with children and colleagues – especially those working in the early childhood setting. For a change, we think a book that is not directly about schools will lead to new – and valuable – thinking and conversations between and amongst teachers and administrators and potentially also involve parents and people working with children in informal learning environments. Inventology should be a great book for that.

Navigating social media constraints proved challenging in round one of the Opal School Book Club. The Facebook Group proved a good meeting place for many – but others who we’d like to include refuse to use Facebook because of the platform’s participation in genocide, privacy violations, and election tampering. The #opalschoolbookclub hashtag on Twitter had some strengths, but the character limit keeps real conversation from happening – and some readers didn’t like toggling back and forth between the two. This time, we’ll use this blog, sparking conversations with entries and then finding conversation in the comments section – with the Facebook group and Twitter in play to remind people to turn that way.

Last time, people let us know that the pace was both too quick and not clearly delineated into sections – and that readers would have benefitted from a calendar issued in advance. For this round, we propose the following:

First, get yourself a copy of the book. Amazon has it here; of course, we encourage you to try your local independent bookseller (and library!) as well. Start reading!

On November 30, we opened a conversation here around the first two sections of the book (Problem Finding and Discovery.) We’ll seek to construct meaningful connections between that reading and our new Framework for Inspiring Inventiveness in this conversation and throughout the reading.

On (or around) December 14, we’ll spark a conversation here around the sections three and four of the book: Prophecy and Connecting.

January 4 – on the other side of the holidays – we’ll look to the final parts of the book, Empowerment and Conclusion. We’ll schedule a web-chat thereabouts – keep an eye out for a date.

Does it make sense to do this around the holidays? I find the holidays provide lots of time for reading that doesn’t exist when school is in session – so maybe it’s prefect. I guess we’ll find out how it works for you.

Are you game? Let me know what you think in the comments section below!

8 Comments

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  • Hello Matt
    That sounds like a wonderful idea. Thanks to you and all the people at Opal for taking the time to do this and thinking about the best platform to encourage dialogue. I’m looking forward to participating in this meeting of minds!

    Anne Boudreau Reply
    • Looking forward to exploring these texts with you, Anne!

      Matt Karlsen Reply
  • Fabulous! My copy is now ordered!

    Katie Knight Reply
  • Hello Matt,
    I just purchased the book and would love to join this book study. I really enjoyed the previous book. I have some ideas for a twitter chat. Thank you for bringing everyone together.

    JoAnne Reply
    • Sounds great, Joanne! I love the idea of a participating reader leading a Twitter chat. Let me know when and how and we’ll help get the word out!

      Matt Karlsen Reply
  • Would love to join the book group. I’ve ordered a copy from the library. It’s on hold. If not here in a few days I’ll buy a copy. Thank you for starting a conversation around a nook not directly related to education and opening it up to a wide audience.

    Pauline Markey Reply
    • Sounds great, Pauline! It’s exciting to read something with teachers that’s not written for teachers, right?

      Matt Karlsen Reply

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