Teach Me, Teacher

Teach Me, Teacher

#264 Share the Greatness Happening in Schools with Hal Bowman (pt.1)

May 23, 2022

Hello everyone! Between the constant attacks on education, toxic echo chambers on the internet, and the quiet majority, many people believe that schools are doing very little good. Of course, we know this isn’t true. We see the greatness happening everyday in the halls, our classrooms, and around school grounds.

Yet we have struggled to share the good news about education in many places. We have let the loud and negative minority win the discussion about what schools are and what they are accomplishing.

Hal Bowman, speaker, podcaster, and author of the latest book Dear Teacher, is back on the podcast to discuss the greatness happening in schools, why we should be sharing our stories, and so much more.

It doesn’t feel like it, but it has been roughly 4 years since Hal Bowman came on the show last. Regardless, I loved having this talk with him and I think you all will as well.



This episode is sponsored by Heinemann—the leading publisher of professional books and resources for educators—and their new book, The Joy of Reading by Donalyn Miller and Teri Lesesne.

What reading experiences have entertained you, provoked you, taught you, inspired you, helped you to see your own life more clearly, or connected you with others?  As teachers, librarians, school administrators, and caregivers who love reading, we know what it feels like to fall into a book and let the world fall away. We have joyous reading memories, and we know how reading can sustain and inspire us.

Now consider: When talking with children about their reading lives at school, are you likely to hear about this transformative reading joy? Or are you more likely to hear about reading logs, book reports, and standardized tests? For too many young readers, reading is joyless. It is something that is required of them, but not something that they choose to do.

Here’s the truth: It is possible to teach children how to read well without killing their love for reading in the process.

The Joy of Reading is a guide for teachers, librarians, administrators, and families to create the conditions for joyful reading. Donalyn Miller and Teri Lesesne draw from their decades of work with students, teachers, and librarians, providing practices that nurture joy while identifying factors that destroy joy, all with a clear understanding of the realities of today’s classrooms and libraries.

There’s more to life than school and work. There’s more to reading than school-based value systems for it. We can aim higher than short-sighted measurements and, instead, become reading encouragers, supporters, and role models for lifelong, joyful reading.