1. November 2018: “Meeting Wise: Making the Most of Collaborative Time for Educators”

    Photo of the book Meeting Wise: Making the Most of Collaborative Time for Educators by Kathryn Parker Boudett and Elizabeth A. City with a quote from the book.

    This book attempts to bring about a fundamental shift in how educators think about the meetings they attend. Meetings are one of the most important venues for adult and organizational learning in schools, and making more effective use of this time is the key to increasing student achievement.

    In Meeting Wise, the authors show why meeting planning is a high-leverage strategy for changing how people work together to advance school improvement efforts. The book includes a meeting-planning “checklist” to develop a common language for discussing and improving the quality of meetings. There are also guidelines on “wise facilitating” and “wise participating,” and “top tips” and common dilemmas.

    Meeting Wise is designed to be read and applied at every level: principals’ meetings with teachers, school board meetings, professional development sessions, teacher-team meetings, and even teachers’ meetings with parents and students.

    Check it out!

    Meeting Wise: Making the Most of Collaborative Time for Educators, Kathryn Parker Boudett and Elizabeth A City; Harvard Education Press, Cambridge, MA. 2016.

  2. November 2017 Book Review: “Change Your Questions Change Your Life”

    Ask yourself, “Am I a Learner or a Judger?”

    Marilee Adams in her book, Change Your Questions, Change Your Life, poses two life-defining questions, followed by some sample questions to assist in a self-reflective examination to help frame thinking, listening, speaking and relating.

    Do you conscientiously take a learner approach?  Or are you inclined to have a judger mindset?

    How can I prove I’m right?What can I learn?
    Haven’t we been there/done that?What are the best steps forward?
    Whose fault is it?Am I being responsible?

    Adams shows how the kinds of questions we ask shape our thinking and can be the root cause of many personal and organizational problems. The book uses a highly instructive and entertaining story to show how to quickly recognize any undermining judger questions that pop into your mind – or out of your mouth – and reframe them to learner questions to achieve amazingly positive and practical results.

    Change Your Questions, Change Your Life is a personal growth fable that tells how a seasoned executive, Ben Knight, uses Question Thinking to move into a higher leadership role and how the same methods of change help him and his wife, Grace, enrich their marriage.

    “We all began asking more questions – Learner questions. These days I smile as I observe people deep in thought studying their Choice Maps as they work through problems or prepare for meetings. . . I have learned to listen in new ways . . . and to stay on point even when conflicts threaten, which happens less and less frequently.” – Ben

    ‘That’s what I realized after studying the Choice Map . . . You know what became clear – we’ve both been going down the Judger path. I know I’ve been judging myself and you, and I see you being in Judger too.’ – Grace

    This book is a helpful resource for individuals and teams – school leaders, board members, teachers, and support staff – looking to improve communication and make positive change. The twelve tools included show how Question Thinking can dramatically improve coaching and leadership.

    Check it out!

    • 12 Powerful Tools for Leadership, Coaching, and Life (included in the book)
    • Choice MapTM (Included in the book with printable copies at

    Change You Questions Change Your Life – 12 Powerful Tools for Leadership, Coaching, and Life, Marilee Adams, Ph.D.; Berrett-Koehler Publishers, San Francisco, CA. 2016, 3rd edition.