Educator Book Reviews


Unique books reviewed by educators who share how each book can be used in a classroom setting.

Gifted to Learn

By Gloria Mehlmann
Published by University of Alberta Press
Reviewed by Sheila Ryan, Educator
Category: Professional Development, General Interest

Excerpt: Author and educator Gloria Mehlmann engages her readers by journeying with them through three separate but interconnected narratives in her memoir Gifted to Learn. She recalls with clarity the stories of individual students and paints colorful anecdotes of their individual struggles and… [Read more]

Healing the Bruises

Written by Lori Morgan
Illustrated by Kathy Kaulbach
Published by Lorimer
Reviewed by Aleksandra Baran, Educator
Category: Family Conflict, Graphic Novel, Youth Fiction

Excerpt: A colourful, graphic novel based on an experience of a woman and her daughter who were helped by Alice Housing, a non-profit organization that helps women and children who are leaving domestic violence situations. The novel follows the main characters, 12-year-old Julia and her mother through a journey of recovery from domestic abuse. It is written from the perspective of Julia, who recalls… [Read more]

Helping Boys Learn
Six Secrets for Teaching Boys in the Classroom

Written and published by Dr. Edmond J. Dixon
Reviewed by David Mount, Vice Principal
Category: Professional Development

Excerpt: Much of the talk in and around education nowadays relates to levels of equity and imbalance. However, within the context of this ongoing debate and particularly within the historic precedent ‘affirmative action’, Dr. Edmond Dixon’s new book highlights the fact that there is a rather large elephant in the classroom… [Read more]

I’ve Got Something to Say!
How Student Voices Inform Our Teaching

By David Booth
Published by Pembroke Publishers
Reviewed by Sandra McLeod-Barbeau, Educator
Category: Professional Development

Excerpt: The subtitle, “How Student Voices Inform Our Teaching,” is also the premise: “student voices are central to effective classroom learning.” Transcripts of teachers’ and students’ interactions make up the bulk of this book which advocates for the teaching of “oracy,”… [Read more]

Looks Like Daylight: Voices of Indigenous Kids

By Deborah Ellis
Published by Groundwood Books
Reviewed by Pam Gray, Assistant Principal
Category: Teen/Youth Adult, Social Studies, FNMI, History

Excerpt: The author travelled across North America conducting interviews that captured the first hand stories of First Nations, Native American, Metis, and Inuit children aged nine to eighteen. This book is a collection of the unique stories told by the interviewed youth and the struggles they have inherited and the… [Read more]

Mathematical Models for Teaching:
Reasoning Without Memorization

By Ann Kajander and Tom Boland
Published by Canadian Scholars’ Press
Reviewed by Katie Saunders, Educator
Category: Math, Professional Development

Excerpt: Mathematical Models for Teaching: Reasoning without Memorization at first glance appears to be similar to a textbook found within university education programs. Progressing though the book however; one will find that the information is relevant to any mathematics teacher regardless of teaching experience… [Read more]

Moment to Moment

By Joey Mandel
Published by Pembroke Publishers
Reviewed by Rebecca Purcell, Educator
Category: Professional Development

Excerpt: As teachers or parents we’ve all been there: a child in the midst of a tantrum, crying and beyond consolable. As the title of this resource, Moment to Moment: A Positive Approach to Managing Classroom Behaviour suggests, it provides effective strategies for helping students struggling with the “hidden curriculum,”… [Read more]

Nonfiction Writing Power
By Adrienne Gear
Published by Pembroke Publishers
Reviewed by Gina Vigna, Educator
Category: Professional Development, Writing, ELA

Excerpt: Nonfiction Writing Power is a book I would highly recommend to colleagues and administrators as a valuable resource to support primarily Language Arts programs. This powerful resource models the importance of writing with intent and purpose and truly guides the educator by providing practical guidelines and strategies to allow them to successfully deliver innovative techniques to… [Read more]

Nunami: Poems from the Arctic

By Barbara Landry
Published by Quattro Books
Reviewed by Tanya Leary, Educator
Category: Poetry

Excerpt: Taking your students on a field trip to the Arctic would be nice, wouldn’t it? It will probably never happen of course, however, I’m pleased to report that I have discovered the next best thing to do with your students, of any age. Nunami is a stunning collection of poems, written from a visitor’s perspective on life in the true North strong and free… [Read more]

Peace: The Exhibition

By Amber Lloydlangston and Kathryn Lyons
Published by Canadian War Museum
Reviewed by Rachel Lengyell, Educator
Category: Social Justice, Canadian Studies, General Interest

Excerpt: Peace: The Exhibition by Amber Lloydlangston and Kathryn Lyons, as intended for use in a school setting, is a great resource for learning about Canadian contributions to peace worldwide. This text has many valuable components of instilling a social justice perspective for our students across Canada…. [Read more]

Picture Me

By Lori Weber
Published by Lorimer
Reviewed by Lorena Duran, Educator
Category: Teen/Junior Fiction, Anti-Bullying

Excerpt: Picture Me is told from the points of view of three girls, Krista, the victim, Chelsea, the bully, and Tessa, the bystander. All three girls have suffered traumatic events that led them to become a bully, be bullied, or be a defender. The novel follows the lives on the girls and addresses universal themes of interpersonal relationships, socioeconomic status, gender roles, and bullying… [Read more]

Teachers At Their Best

By Gina Valle
Published by Quattro Books
Reviewed by Dixie Pallett-Firth, Teacher-Librarian
Category: Diversity, Professional Development

Excerpt: Based on two years of research and collecting data from eight Montreal teachers who represent different racial, linguistic, and cultural backgrounds, the author argues that teachers who create pluralistic classrooms, foster environments where our diverse students become inclusive citizens… [Read more]


By Kevin Bird and Kirk Savage
Published by Pemrboke Publishers
Reviewed by Chris Cocek, Educator
Category: Math, Professional Development

Excerpt: The Assessment of Numeracy in Education (ANIE) is designed for educators to evaluate students’ understanding of mathematical concepts beyond traditional methods. The authors claim, and I would agree, that once the ANIE template is implemented into a K-12 math classroom, it would provide accurate, detailed information on student progress and misconceptions… [Read more]