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To Sir, With Love
Edward Ricardo Braithwaite
It is a must-read book for any teacher worth her classroom. It tells the tale of Mr. Braithwaite and his struggles to teach poor teenagers on the verge of adulthood in one of the poorest neighborhoods of London. The need for creative and heartfelt approaches to educational challenges is made clear. And, of course, the inspirational tone of the book is exactly what is needed in this day and age.

Esmé Raji Codell has written a funny, hip diary filled with one-liners and unadorned thoughts that speak volumes about the raw, emotional life of a first-year teacher.She's a rash, petite, lady who roller-skates through the halls and insists that her fifth-graders call her "Madame Esmé." But it's not all fun and games: she introduces us to children who fling their desks and apologize in tears.

Educating Esme: Diary of a Teacher's First Year
Esme Raji Codell

Up the Down Staircase
Bel Kaufman
Up the Down Staircase is the funny and touching story of a committed, idealistic teacher whose dash with school bureaucracy is a timeless lesson for students, teachers, parents anyone concerned about public education. Bel Kaufman lets her characters speak for themselves through memos, letters, directives from the principal, comments by students, notes between teachers etc. evoking a vivid picture of teachers fighting the good fight against all that stands in the way of good teaching.

In 1982, Salzman flew off to teach English in Changsha, China. He writes of bureaucrats, students and Cultural Revolution survivors, stripping none of their complexity and humanity. Though history and classical lore seep through, this is mostly a personal tale. Salzman captures post-cultural revolution China through his adventures as a young American English teacher in China and his shifu-tudi (master-student) relationship with China's foremost martial arts teacher.
Iron and Silk (Vintage Departures)
Mark Salzman


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Last updated on 24 November, 2003