Going by the Book: The Role of Popular Classroom Chronicles in the Professional Development of Teachers

Going by the Book: The Role of Popular Classroom Chronicles in the Professional Development of Teachers

Going by the Book: The Role of Popular Classroom Chronicles in the Professional Development of Teachers

Going by the Book: The Role of Popular Classroom Chronicles in the Professional Development of Teachers

Synopsis

The plight of the new teacher has changed little during the last 30 years. Neophytes still confront the same conflicting demands--to foster students' academic development while controlling their behavior, often in crowded classrooms in ill-equipped and poorly administered schools. Thanks to five books, Isenberg (a 30-year veteran of urban classroom teaching) found solace and support. The five books are Up The Down Staircase, Teacher, How Children Fail, To Sir With Love, and 36 Children. As teaching narratives, these best-selling writings of classroom teachers are a precious legacy of wisdom, inspiration, and experience. Going By The Book is the first published account of the role of teaching narratives in the ongoing professional development of a working teacher. It also serves to illustrate the importance of shared stories in maintaining the will to endure in the teaching profession.

Excerpt

In the very act of writing this book, which is, in part, a rather elaborate thank-you note to the teacher-authors who have sustained me in the classroom, I have incurred yet another debt. So these few lines are also a thank-you note, simpler and shorter but no less heartfelt. This note is to the people who have sustained me at the word processor: Debbie Calahan, Joe Colicchio, Emily Dominguez, Margot Ely, Lynn Flint, Elaine Foster, Marge and Bill Graham, Barbara Grenquist, Amanda Gulla, Janis Isenberg, Liz Leiba, Corinne Levin, Lisa Lipkin, Liliane MacPherson, John Mayher, Taleasia McCants, Sharon Meyers, Michelle Nuding, Dennis Parsons, Henry Perkinson, Narcisa Polonio, Gordon Pradl, Ted Rabb, Joan and Joe Rafter, Jim Sacks, Sharon Shelton, Dinah Stevenson, Ruth Tait, Joe Todaro, Barry Tomkins, Ellen Turner, Mark Walker, and those at Hudson County Community College who awarded me a sabbatical leave during which to complete the book.

In addition, I belong to a writing group with Susan Babinski, Pat Juell, and Rebecca Mlynarczyk; this manuscript has benefited enormously from their informed and tactful counsel, as have I from their gift of sisterhood.

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