As my sufferings mounted I soon realized that there were two ways in which I could respond to my situation—either to react with bitterness or seek to transform the suffering into a creative force. I decided to follow the latter course.
―Martin Luther King Jr.
Teachers are on the front lines. We are advocates, mediators, magicians, actors, and even healers. Yes, healers. On any given day a teacher can witness a student trying to make sense of struggles in his life. As teachers, we carry students’ stories with us. Some of the stories make us cry, some just about break us, and some transform us.
Alfie Kohn’s new book, Schooling Beyond Measure, is a collection of provocative and insightful essays that address big-picture policy issues as well as small scale classroom interactions. In it, he looks carefully at research about such topics as homework, play, the supposed benefits of practice, parent involvement in education, the alleged inferiority of U.S. schools relative to those in other countries, and summer learning loss—discovering in each case that what we've been led to believe doesn't always match what the studies actually say.
Alfie Kohn has been described in Time magazine as “perhaps the country’s most outspoken critic of education’s fixation on grades [and] test scores.” The author of over a dozen books, he has helped shape the thinking of educators and parents for over two decades. Kohn has been featured on hundreds of TV and radio programs, including the “Today” show and “Oprah”; he has been profiled in the Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times, while his work has been described and debated in many other leading publications.