Our school finds its way into a number of published works that tout our tools as a learning community, as described in two full books about the school, as well as manuscripts that contain full chapters devoted to our education system, or just a mention in passing.
Below we’ve compiled a list of these books and published works, along with their authors, in case you’re interested in reading how the rest of the world sees our unique approach to high school education.
Not surprising, most of these mentions praise our insistence on actively engaging our students in their learning by placing the emphasis on the student voice in the equation.
Books Fully Featuring Eagle Rock:
The Other Side of Curriculum — Lessons from Learners by Lois Easton (Heinemann, December 2001)
Eagle Rock School is the protagonist behind this book, where Lois Easton discusses practical tools for creating an effective learning community — all based on her experiences working at Eagle Rock.
She says that at Eagle Rock, the learners are central and the curriculum is responsive to their needs. The book answers the question: What should students know and be able to do, and how do educators help them to know and do it?
Each chapter begins with a story of learning at Eagle Rock that illustrates a concept of curriculum. Easton describes that concept and offers questions that will help educators translate the concept to their own situation. The book discusses curriculum in relation to culture, instruction-assessment, learner-centered education, competency-based systems, self-directed learning and personal growth.
Engaging the Disengaged — How Schools Can Help Struggling Students Succeed by Lois Easton (Corwin, October 2007)
This second book based on Lois Brown Easton’s experiences at Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center, is intended to assist educators to make positive connections with youngsters of all ages who are at risk of failing or dropping out.
It includes creating a school-wide climate that supports all students and promotes academic, personal and social growth. That includes changes to teacher-student relationships, teaching approaches for working with struggling learners, developing self-directed learners and using appropriate assessments for students with learning disabilities.
Engage The Disengaged is intended to inspire teachers to pursue changes that engage developing minds and support all learners — no matter their socioeconomic situation.
Chapters in books featuring Eagle Rock:
10 Great Curricula: Lived Conversations of Progressive, Democratic Curricula in School and Society, Edited by Thomas S. Poetter, Miami University, Oxford, Ohio, (Information Age Publishers, 2012). This book contains a chapter entitled Eagle Rock School: A “Mis-Equation” for Greatness — How a Curriculum Based on 8+5=10 Teaches and Transforms, by Amy Fisher Young.
Eagle Rock School is represented in a chapter of this book, that is a collection of stories written by teachers who have come to understand curricula differently as a result of their engagement with a graduate course and its instructor.
The book is representative of what the authors consider the best to be found in teaching and learning, and in the quest for meaningful ways to understand curricula.
Learning from the Student’s Perspective: A Sourcebook for Effective Teaching, by Alison Cook-Sather and colleagues (Paradigm Publishers, 2010). This book contains a chapter entitled “A schoolwide model for student voice in curriculum development and teacher preparation.”
Much has been written about how to engage students in their learning, but very little of it has issued from students themselves. This compilation highlights student voices, with five chapters devoted to student perspectives — recorded in their own words — about creating and maintaining a positive classroom environment with lessons that are engaging.
The book also offers guidelines that were created by educational researchers specifically to act upon student perspectives.
Powerful Designs for Professional Learning, 3rd Edition, Edited by Lois Easton (Learning Forward, 2015)
Filled with 24 learning designs, this book helps educators understand the kinds of learning experiences that result in changed practices and better results for students. This book contins chapters authored by more than 30 of the field’s leading experts in learning, including a chapter about Eagle Rock authored by our own Michael Soguero and Dan Condon, along with Colin Packard of Voyageur Academy / Consortium College Preparatory Academy and Lois Easton. The range of designs covered in this edition allows educators to find the best approaches for their particular needs and circumstances.
National Society for the Study of Education 2014 Yearbook, Edited by David J. Shernoff and Janine Bempechat (Teachers College Columbia University, 2014). This volume (Vol. No. 113, Issue 1) contains a chapter entitled “Engaging the Disengaged – How One School Re-Engages Students in Learning by Lois Easton, Dan Condon and Michael Soguero.
Divided into four parts, this volume focuses on concepts of engagement and the importance of engagement in structured activities for development and well-being. It also discusses processes of engagement and the influence that teachers and staff can exert, as well as contexts that are empirically supported as engaging.
Eagle Rock is mentioned within Published Books:
Everyone Leads, Building Leadership From The Community Up, 1st Edition, by Paul Schmitz. Eagle Rock is mentioned on pages 225 & 226.
Paul Schmitz, CEO of Public Allies, shares unique experiences and lessons his organization has learned from two decades of identifying and developing thousands of diverse young leaders across the country. The book is organized around a new definition of leadership: (1) It is an action everyone can take, not a position few hold; (2) it is about taking personal and social responsibility to work with others on common goals; and (3) it is the practice of values that engage diverse individuals and groups to work together effectively.
In the book, Schmitz says that, “No organization has influenced our approach to learning more than the Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center of Estes Park, Colorado, the gateway to Rocky Mountain Park.”
Small Schools, Big Ideas: The Essential Guide to Successful School Transformation, by Mara Benitez, Jill Davidson, Laura Flaxman (Jossey-Bass, November 2009). Eagle Rock is featured beginning on page 168.
This guide shows how the principle-based and equity-focused model from the Coalition of Essential Schools (CES) can be used to redesign existing schools and create new schools that implement student-centered teaching, learning, and curricula. It offers proven approaches that can help educators transform their schools to become truly equitable, personalized, and academically challenging.
Eagle Rock’s Dan Condon is quoted within the book regarding Eagle Rock School’s work as a Mentor School within the CES Small Schools Network. The author praises Eagle Rock for our approach to peer-to-peer mentoring.
Make Just One Change: Teach students to ask their own questions, by Dan Rothstein and Luz Santana (Harvard Education Press, 2011). This book features Eagle Rock on page 108.
The authors claim formulating your own questions — in the simplest way possible — is the single most essential skill for learning and one that should be taught to all students. They present the Question Formulation Technique, which is a protocol that enables learners to produce their own questions, improve their questions, and strategize how to use them.
Professional Learning Communities by Design – Putting the Learning Back into PLCs, by Lois E. Brown Easton (Corwin, 2011). This book features Eagle Rock beginning on page 200.
Our award-winning former leadership team member Lois Easton is back again with her latest work, which provides a case study in narrative form about how professional learning communities develop, mature and sustain themselves. The book is accompanied by a CD that contains professional learning designs for a variety of professional learning community contexts; helpful forms, templates and rubrics; and protocols for collecting, analyzing, and applying data.
Click on any of the book titles above for more information or to purchase the title for your own collection.