Despite dwindling resources and high-stakes testing, public school teachers all over the country are managing to breathe life, passion, and excitement into their classrooms. In this new book by bestselling author A.J. Juliani and lifelong educator David E. Baugh, you’ll meet a diverse group of teachers—Mavericks—who are doing exactly that. You’ll hear from teachers across the country and how they are shaking up the norm. Each story includes a powerful vignette and a breakdown of tactics used, so you can bring inspiration and strategies back to your own classroom.
Together, these teachers and their stories will show you how to relate and respond to your students’ most pressing needs, leaving you feeling reenergized in your role as a change-maker.
Table of Contents
Meet the Authors
Introduction: Dave Baugh and the Power of Mavericks to Save Public Education
1 Mary Ann Miller: Sharing a Passion for Middle-School Science
2 Christina Core and Samantha Hinnant: Changing the Classroom for a Changing World
3 Ignacio Jayo: Authenticity in STEM Education
4 Lee Cousin: Laying the Foundation with Growth Mindset
5 Kelly Ann Johnson: The Power of Mentoring
6 Michelle Martinez: Cross-Curricular Innovation through Forensics
7 Guila Curley: The Power of Teacher–Student Relationships
8 Lauren Zucker and Anthony Quintangeli: Taking Risks in Makerspaces
9 Vanda Fernandes: Integrating Technology with Purpose
10 Faith Cahill: Meeting the Needs of Diverse Learners
11 Conor Corey: Transforming Khan and the Classroom
12 School Spotlight: Navigating Cultural Challenges at Bridgeport Elementary
13 District Spotlight: Distributed Leadership in Douglas County
14 Shawanna James-Coles: Family Engagement for those at Risk
15 Becoming a Maverick Teacher School: A.J. Juliani’s Story and Where to Go from Here
Resource Guide to Maverick Teaching
David E. Baugh is the Superintendent of Schools in the Centennial School District outside Philadelphia. A lifelong educator, artist, and athlete, as well as a huge fan of public education, he has presented and written about distributed leadership, school choice, and open education resources.
A.J. Juliani is a leading educator in the area of innovation, design thinking, and inquiry-based learning. He is currently the Director of Technology and Innovation for Centennial School District. He is the author of books centered around student agency, choice, innovative learning, and engagement.
"Did a teacher change your life? Can other teachers learn how to do the same? The stories of these extraordinary teachers will remind you why you got into education in the first place and will inspire you to change your own teaching game."--Angela Duckworth, author of Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, and Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania
"Energizing. Refreshing. At last an educational text that honors those professionals who go above and beyond the walls of a traditional classroom. A voice to those who focus less on testing, testing, testing and more on personalizing the learning experience for each and every child. The stories of these "Mavericks" that grace the pages of this text will leave their footprint on our future." --Amy Lane, Executive Director-Curriculum, Instruction, & Professional Growth, Douglas County School District, CO
"Written in enthusiastic and accessible prose, Baugh and Juliani’s Maverick Teachers gives voice to the everyday heroes teaching in schools across this country – heroes who, in the words of one Maverick "won’t settle for anything less than the best I can get out of my kids." The compelling narratives of these teachers remind us why we went into education in the first place and provide hope for fulfilling the promise that resides in each child."--Erin McNamara Horvat, Ph.D., Professor, Drexel University
"The authors' insights into maverick teachers who are making a difference and breathing life and energy into their schools will inspire and motivate you. Their lessons on leadership will build your confidence in today’s public schools."--John A. DeFlaminis, Director of the Penn Center for Educational Leadership and the Distributed Leadership Program at the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania; co-author of Distributed Leadership in Schools: A Practical Guide for Learning and Improvement (Routledge).
"Maverick Teachers provides a glimpse into the classrooms of some of the most innovative and engaging teachers across the country. The Maverick Teachers highlighted in the book present a hopeful portrait of public education and clearly show the dedication and commitment of America's teachers. Public education is often negatively presented in the media, and this book tells the stories of exemplary educators who are passionate about their profession and focused on the learning and development of all of their students. This picture is what I am more accustomed to observing in classrooms on a regular basis. I commend Juliani and Baugh for their thoughtful presentation of these promising practitioners."--Kevin McIntyre, Ed.D., Superintendent, Milford Public Schools, MA
"David Baugh and A.J. Juliani have written a hopeful and yet practical book for educators as well as parents, community members, and policy makers. It is a book of short case studies of what they call "maverick teachers." Often these case studies can be seen as supporting the use of "agile" technologies – technologies that enable the teachers to craft their jobs to best serve students, and that involve the teachers in taking risks that are the mark of a growth mindset that the teacher models for students and that the students can learn from. Part of the hopefulness in this book is that the case studies of practice open worlds for the reader, point to research connected to the practice, to tactics employed by the teacher and to logistics that support the tactics and practice."--Harris Sokoloff, Ph.D., Center for School Study Councils, Penn Project for Civic Engagement, Graduate School of Education, University of Pennsylvania