I have a secret. Whenever I want to know more about something I read a book. That’s not the secret, though. If I want to understand things deeply, I start a book club. That’s the secret! There’s nothing like learning new material with people who are as eager to learn it as you. The benefits include many perspectives, critical thinking, inspirations, aha moments, new ideas, problem solving, and bonding.
Book Studies with Parents
I’ve held many successful book studies with parents. Doing this over a few decades
with different parent populations and varied school demographics, I have a few ways of running groups to suit the needs particular to the school and the times.
Setting it Up
I start by choosing a book that will help my school with a particular problem. The year we needed to know more about relational aggression, I chose Girl Wars: 12 Strategies to End Female Bullying by Cheryl Dellesega and Charisse Nixon. Then I put an announcement in our school news. Several parents signed up, we worked out a time and started to meet once a week. All participants were female. What started to be a learning session about relational aggression quickly evolved into discussion sessions of self-disclosure and self-discovery. In an effort to help their daughters, these mothers also got to know themselves better. The goal of the group was simply to read the book, learn about relational aggression, and discuss whatever came up. Book chapters were read at home and discussed at school. This particular group met after school.