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Pedagogical Resources

Page history last edited by PBworks 16 years, 4 months ago



Some of the research that helped shaped Woodlawn’s mission and philosophy include:


Berlin, Isaiah, The Hedgehog and the Fox: An Essay on Tolstoy’s View of History Elephant Paperback, 1993.

Philosopher, political theorist, and historian of ideas, Berlin was one of the leading liberal thinkers of the 20th century. The central idea of this essay is “The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing.” This profound life lesson significantly influenced Woodlawn’s mission and philosophy. Educational excellence is not about a series of complex, cunning strategies. It is about doing the simple things every day and doing them well.


Cushman, Kathleen, “Essential School Structure and Design: Boldest Moves Get the Best Results,” Horace, June 1999.

This article shows that playing it safe isn’t always playing it safe. To be successful and on the edge means stepping out of the accepted comfort zones of traditional educational pedagogy.


Barton, James and Collins, Angelo, Portfolio Assessment: A Handbook for Educators, Dale Seymour Publications, 1997.

This book demonstrates how portfolios can enhance instruction and assessment in the classroom.


Heacox, Diane, Ed.D., Differentiating Instruction in the Regular Classroom, Free Spirit Publishing, 2002.

The author explains how teachers can design multiple learning opportunities in the classroom by changing the pace, level, and kind of instruction.


Senge, Peter, Schools That Learn, Doubleday, 2000.



Collins, Jim, Good to Great, Collins, 2001.

Although primarily targeted towards the business world, there are many lessons in this classic book that can be applied to nonprofit schools such as ours.


Friedman, Thomas L., The World Is Flat: Updated and Expanded: A Brief History of the Twenty-first Century, Farrar, Straus and Giroux; Expanded and Updated edition April 18, 2006.

This book posits that a dramatic shift has taken place over the last five years. The world has gotten flatter (i.e. playing fields have been leveled) so that it is more important than ever to understand different cultures and the viewpoints of different nationalities.


Hotchkiss, Carol, W., “Putting Humanity First: A Curriculum for the 21st Century”, Independent School, Summer 2005.

This article helped shaped our Life Skills and Brown Bag forums. Hotchkiss put it best when she said, “If our efforts can support genuine friendship and understanding across lines of race, gender, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, and socioeconomics, our graduates will function more effectively in the diverse adult world and perhaps bring new tolerance and possibilities.”


Sizer, Theodore R., Horace’s School: Redesigning the American High School, Mariner Books, 1997. Sizer rejects the shopping mall approach to schools and instead proposes that students have the freedom to explore deeply those subjects that are of interest to them and gain total understanding. An issue of depth vs. coverage and less is more.


Edmunson, Mark, Why Read?, Bloomsbury, 2005. Edmunson argues the learning of formal and figurative elements of literary work are depriving our students of the ability to study literature openly. Edmunson shows ways to reconnect the study of literature to the real concerns of our students.


Simon, Katherine, G., Moral Questions in the Classroom: How to Get Kids to Think Deeply About Real Life and Their Schoolwork, Yale University Press, 2003.

Simon, director of research at the Coalition of Essential Schools in California argues, in this book, that we are not teaching what “matters” in our classrooms. The book cites examples of the necessity to integrate moral and existential inquiry into the classroom. The information in this book helped form our philosophy on how we engage students in conversation and encourage question asking rather than to fill their minds with rote facts. It led naturally into developing Big Questions that provide an overarching theme at each grade level.


Applebee, Arthur, N., Curriculum as Conversation: Transforming Traditions of Teaching and Learning, University of Chicago Press, 1996.

A short, but powerful book that quickly points out that without meaningful conversation and intriguing questions in the classroom, students will not become engaged, lifelong learners.


Eyler, Janet, A Practitioner’s Guide to Reflection in Service Learning, Vanderbilt University, 1996.

The underlying theme in this book is that reflection leads to understanding. Woodlawn continually references this book to reinforce our process of reflection writing in the classroom, especially in the area of service learning where students, through their reflective pieces, not only gain a better understanding of social issues, they also seek to find solutions.


Service Learning Center at Moorhead State University, The Practical Guide to Service Learning.

A guide filled with examples on how to get faculty on board with your service program. A nice explanation on the difference between service learning and volunteering. Solidifies the connection between active learning and active participation.


National Council for Teachers of Mathematics Principles and Standards for School Mathematics: www.nctm.org

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