I recently read a fantastic book that I think has particular relevance for teachers, and I wanted to pass along this recommendation. Chip and Dan Heath's Made to Stick starts with the idea that every day people all over the world are trying to communicate their ideas to others and have them be remembered. These messages, for example, may be advertisements that companies send to consumers, corporate strategy that executives send to their employees, or lessons that teachers and parents present to children.
The authors make the point that some messages tend to "stick" with their audience while others don't. Subway's advertising campaign involving Jared, for example, resonated with the American public while its "7 Under 6" campaign was far less successful. To explain why some messages stick and others don't, the Heaths present six criteria of "stickiness." Specifically, they offer six qualities that messengers can use to make their messages more likely to be remembered and acted upon.
These qualities are: 1) simplicity, 2) unexpectedness, 3) concreteness, 4) credibility, 5) emotional, and 6) stories. Since reading this book, I have made an effort to incorporate these six qualities into my teaching, and the early results have been promising. In fact, the book inspired the "31st Student" idea that I recently shared with you. I'm also working on some new "sticky" classroom ideas that I hope to share with you in the near future.
In short, the book is a terrific read full of interesting examples that can serve as a catalyst for educators who are looking to add their impact to their instruction. You can find the book on amazon.