Book Reviews

 What Connected Educators Do Differently

“Todd, Jeff, and Jimmy share an insight on more than being a “connected” educator, but on learning and making a difference for the reader and others. Their enthusiasm throughout the book is contagious, but it is their practical and simple steps that they share from both their experience and research that will make a world of difference in your practice, ultimately leading to better learning opportunities for yourself, and your students.”

George Couros, internationally-recognized thought leader and a Division Principal of Innovative Teaching and Learning in Alberta, Canada



Publisher handing us our book for the first time.


“Educators are sharing and connecting more than ever–with students, with parents and community members, and with each other. How well we do our jobs has become ever-more dependent on the quality of our connectedness and communications. What Connected Educators Do Differently raises the bar for how these connections need to happen, and for how they can radically improve what we’re doing for students.”

Angela Maiers, nationally-recognized speaker and consultant on 21st century teaching, and coauthor of The Passion-Driven Classroom

“The brilliance of this book lies in the stories that illustrate the countless reasons why educators should be connected in online and global–not just local–communities of practice. The Follow 5, Find 5, and Take 5 sections at the end of each chapter are fantastic!”

Dr. Scott McLeod, Director of Innovation, Prairie Lakes Area Education Agency, and Founding Director, CASTLE


Start. Right. Now. – Teach and Lead for Excellence

“Few books on education leadership are as mindful of their intended audience as this one is. Clear, convincing, and ceaselessly practical, Start. Right. Now. is soon to be a favored text in schools of education leadership. The collective brain trust among Casas, Whitaker, and Zoul is a national treasure to be referenced for years to come. Deeply professional and far from indifferent, the authors provide insight and principles for teachers and their leaders to confront professional hypocrisy, demonstrate deep knowledge in their daily practice, analyze and reflect on the effectiveness of actions,  then revise practices based on those reflections. Tightly written, research infused, and including the voices of many of my favorite rising heroes in education, Casas, Whitaker, and Zoul answer the hard questions of education leadership, including how to do lead both formally and informally, the dynamic, fluid nature of excellence, the synergy between teaching and leading, responding to the “no time” issue, planning for the future while attending to the present, and answering the plea, “show me what it looks like,” definitively. The content is so inspiring, in fact, we have no choice but to drop the book and take action in our own schools.”   

Rick Wormeli, Author of Fair Isn’t Always Equal, Columnist, and Educator

“As the Director of Innovation for Future Ready Schools, I’ve worked closely with over 750 school districts and 3,000 school administrators across the nation over the past few years, witnessing firsthand how these leaders are searching tirelessly to find innovative ways to create schools that better prepare students for their future. At a time when districts are rushing to fill their classrooms with the latest technology, leaders must first realize that leadership and school culture are the foundation to developing schools that are future ready. In Start. Right. Now., Whitaker, Zoul, and Casas do an absolutely brilliant job laying out a framework to unlock the talent in every educator, both administrators and teachers. From vision and leadership, to creating a dynamic, relationship-empowered school culture with authentic learning experiences for all, this book absolutely nails it and equips both teachers and school leaders to consistently, intentionally, and actively know the way, show the way, go the way, and grow each day! If you’re an educator working to shift instructional pedagogy in your classroom, or a school administrator leading the way, you will find this book to be one of your very best resources in your journey forward.”

 Thomas C. Murray, Director of Innovation, Future Ready Schools

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