Monday, January 27, 2014

Review of I GOT SCHOOLED by M. Night Shyamalan

Like most people, I was surprised to learn that filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan was writing a book on education. I love Shyamalan's movies, I'm an educator, so I was immediately intrigued by the concept of I Got Schooled. I love the way Shyamalan shares his passion for education and the story that prompted him to write the book. He seems to genuinely care about the state of education in America.

I love the way he outlines the five solutions as something that has to cohesively work together to create any real change. In the book, Shyamalan interviews many great minds in the field of education to reach his conclusions. As a teacher, his findings challenged me to be my best as an educator because of the potential cost to students who have just one year under a poor teacher. I agree that smaller schools would provide a more conducive environment for students to learn because the teacher could spread themselves to a smaller number of students.

The book works because Shyamalan is a great story teller, and the stories he tells about students and teachers he met on his journey to finding the key tenets to successful education were inspiring and gave hope for a better educational future. Even if you don't agree with everything that Shaymalan presents, if you're and educator or a parent, this book is worth your time for the research it presents.

I wish the book would have provided more tips a teacher could put into practice to improve the educational environment, but perhaps Shyamalan has more to say on the subject that wasn't in the book. I personally enjoyed this book as a rare storytelling experience from a master filmmaker, and I learned a lot about my field at the same time.

Review copy provided by Simon and Schuster

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