Education was considered to be the privilege of a few in ancient times. From the early 16th century, the concept of education for everyone took root in Europe. In Germany, Martin Luther, the religious reformer, promoted the practice of universal education so that people could read the Scriptures on their own. Schools were run by the Church, and by the end of the 17th century, schooling was made compulsory in most parts of Germany. In Britain, Latin was taught to scholars and trades were taught through apprenticeships
In the New World of North America, children were taught the alphabet with the help of Biblically themed rhymes. By the 20th century, the idea of universal and compulsory education had spread to most countries. There are now many different types of schools, and even the idea of home schooling has many adherents. The titles listed below show the vast canvas that education encompasses.
1. The Schoolmaster by Arthur Christopher Benson Though this book was written over a hundred years ago, it still contains valuable tips on teaching.
2. The Beautiful Risk of Education by Gert Biesta The author disagrees with educators who insist on conformity in student outcomes. He suggests that we should embrace the unknown.
3. Teaching Outside the Box: How to Grab Your Students By Their Brains by LouAnne Johnson This book suggests practical ways of doing activities that will invigorate the learning experience.
4. Teach Like Your Hair’s on Fire: The Method and Madness Inside Room 56 The author has shared his experience of teaching a class in a deprived community. He does not consider deprivation to be a reason for failure.
5. Teaching With Love and Logic: Taking Control of the Classroom by Jim Fay and David Funk This book outlines ways to establish discipline without confrontation.
6. The First Days of School: How to Be an Effective Teacher by Harry K. Wong and Rosemary Wong The beginning of the school year sets the tone for the days that follow. This book provides advice based on the experience of many seasoned teachers.
7. Letters to a Young Teacher by Jonathan Kozol The author is an educational reformer who exchanges letters with a first grade teacher. His love of teaching is apparent.
8. Collected Writings on Education and Drama by Dorothy Heathcote The author is well known for her innovation in education. She used theatre and drama in the classroom to achieve spectacular results.
9. Ed Speak: A glossary of Education Terms, Phrases, Buzz Words and Jargon by Diane Ravitch Educational policies contain words which may be confusing. The author de-mystifies the most commonly used jargon.
10. Overschooled But Undereducated: How the Crisis in Education is Jeopardizing Our Adolescents by Heather MacTaggart and John Abbott Adolescents have to rebel against their parents and teachers, so that they can improve their future environment. Their educational needs must reflect this.
11. Seven Myths About Education by Daisy Christodoulou The author is an experienced teacher who has debunked some common misconceptions.
12. A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change by Douglas Thomas and John Seely Browne Technology is here to stay and it would be helpful to use it creatively in education.
13. Make It Stick: The Science of Successful Learning by Peter C. Brown, Henry Roediger III and Mark McDaniel The authors suggest new, practical ways to learn. Their advice is backed by research.
14. Five Minds for the Future by Howard Gardner Best known for his theory of multiple intelligences, the author identifies five qualities that will be needed in the near future.
15. The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything by Ken Robinson, Ph.D The author demonstrates the need to encourage creativity in the young.
16. Bounce: The Myth of Talent and the Power of Practice by Matthew Syed This book advocates watching children to identify their abilities and helping them to hone their skills.
17. Social Network Theory and Educational Change by Alan J. Daly The author has used a case study to demonstrate how change can be brought about in education by using the theory of social network analysis.
18. Beyond the Hole in the Wall by Sugata Mitra The author uses an experiment to make a case for self organised learning.
19. The One World Schoolhouse: Education Reimagined by Salman Khan The founder of the famous Khan Academy outlines his vision of using technology to provide free, world class education to all.
20. Finnish Lessons: What Can the World Learn from Educational Change in Finland? by Pasi Sahlberg The author gives an appraisal of the Finnish model of schooling, and calls for immediate measures to be taken to replicate it.