(Update from Dave: My book received an unsolicited review over at English Journal. Read it here.)
Two summers ago when I started Teaching the Core, it was a freebie blog on WordPress.com that literally zero people had heard of.
I wrote my tail off, submitting many of you to torture by typo and billions of pixels of true rough draft thinking.
Yet slowly but surely, the blog grew, and I swear to you that I'm not exaggerating or trying to be humble when I say that 99% of that success has been thanks to people who are not named Dave Stuart Jr.
Part came from commenters on the blog who helped me understand what to write about next; part came from folks on Twitter like Erica Beaton and Mary Clark who relentlessly shared what I was writing (and they still do today) when I was a literal and total Twitter newb; part came from the educators I work with at Cedar Springs High School; so much came from my students, who constantly forced me to bridge the gap between theory and practice; a good deal of it came from the community at Fizzle, an online learning platform for people trying to build a useful thing online and, heaven forbid, even earn an income doing it.
Credit where it's due, you know?
All that is to say that, in Fall 2013, I was approached by an acquisitions editor named Kate at Jossey-Bass Wiley, and we ended up with a book contract. I was like:
because writing a book has been on my bucket list before I knew bucket lists were a thing.
The most biased review of my book you'll ever read
So here's what I think the book is and isn't.
- mercifully short
- extremely well designed
- decidedly down to earth
- the best book on the Common Core (I vote for Jim Burke's on that one.)
- rife with research (there's a bit, but I wouldn't call it rife)
- written by a guru (I'm just a small-town teacher man in West Michigan, people!)
And here's what it does and doesn't do.
- treat every anchor standard
- take a crack at why each anchor matters
- contain a much more polished and thorough version of the material I used to sell on this blog as a $1+ ebook and that I blogged through in Summer 2012.
It does not:
- treat grade-level standards
- strike me as the kind of book I'd sit down in an armchair with a pipe and read through for enjoyment
- have any cool pictures in it (well, I take that back, there is one sweet diagram)
And that, my friends, is all you need to know to determine if you will purchase said book.
(If you do decide to purchase it, please consider asking your administrator to foot the bill by writing a well-reasoned resource request.)