Recommended Reading for Social Studies Buffs

Looking for something to read as you sit by the pool, lake or beach in these last few weeks of summer? I did a quick survey of my TCI colleagues to find some recommended reading for social studies buffs. Pick up any of the books listed below and you will be both entertained and smarter for your effort.

Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell-This was suggested by curriculum developer, Nancy Rogier. She found the chapter on the 10,000 hour effect especially thought provoking. This essentially says that if you do something for 10,000 hours you become an expert. Gladwell is a favorite of many other TCI staffers who also recommended Tipping Point and Blink.

The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine by Michael Lewis-TCI economics guru, Karl Grubaugh, recommends this books to anyone who wants a better understanding of what exactly caused the real estate crisis and the ensuing Great Recession. Michael Lewis, who also authored Liar’s Poker and Blind Side, makes arcane Wall Street language easy to understand and engaging.

Nurtureshock by Po Bronson-Suggested by TCI staffer Traci Cook, this book is also a new favorite of mine. Bronson has a gift for making complex academic research accessible and useful for both parents and teachers. Traci found the research he shared on how profoundly sleep affects learning to be fascinating.

I Choose to Stay by Salome Thomas-El-A  favorite of TCI consultant Dawn Smith, this memoir recounts Thomas-El’s journey from student to principal in inner-city Philadelphia. Dawn also recommends  Immortality of Influence by the same author.

A History of the World in 6 Glasses by Tom Standage-Suggested by TCI Trainer, Richard Gray, this books traces the history of the world by focusing on beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea and Coca Cola.

Generation Me: Why Today’s Young Americans Are More Confident, Assertive, Entitled-and More Miserable Than Ever Before by Jean M. Twenge-Also recommended by Richard Gray.

Rise to Rebellion  and The Glorious Cause by Jeff Shaara-TCI’s prolific blogger, Brian Thomas, loves historical fiction, and Jeff Shaara is his favorite. Also recommended by Bruce Damasio is the book by Shaara’s  father, The Killer Angels.

Trinity by Leon Uris-Also suggested by Bruce Damasio, this historical novel educates the reader about Ireland’s people and history.

Undaunted Courage by Stephen Ambrose-TCI’s founder, Bert Bower, calls this one of the best reads ever. My own well-worn copy is a testament to this.

John Adams by David McCollough-This fascinating book was recommended by many folks at TCI. It’s long but worth it!

I hope you get a chance to pick up one of these thought-provoking books this summer. If you have another great recommendation to share, please post it in the comments section.

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