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Having Hard Conversations

Having Hard Conversations

Foreword by Arthur L. Costa

March 2009 | 152 pages | Corwin
A thousand things are unspoken in schools every day, and the lack of truth telling can bring about an ineffective status quoáandáresult in our students not getting the education they deserve. For most educators, confronting colleagues with truths about ineffective practices or potentially harmful behavior can be extremely challenging. Having Hard Conversations is designed to teach adults to talk to one another about difficult issues. The author guides readers through a series of preparatory steps leading to the actual conversationáand helpsáeducators to: Define the challenge Identify and map desired outcomes Prepare an advance script Consider external factors such as where and when the conversation should take placeEducators will gain a better understanding of the common reasons for not speaking out as well as the potential consequences of silence.
Foreword by Arthur L. Costa
About the Author
1. What Are Hard Conversations and Why Should We Have Them?
2. Why We Hesitate Having Hard Conversations
3. Questions to Ask Yourself Before Having the Hard Conversation
4. What’s the Real Problem?: Finding the Professional Language to Name It
5. Making a Plan
6. Scripting Your Initial Comments
7. The Whats, Wheres, and Whens of Having the Hard Conversation
8. What Ifs? Other Types of Hard Conversations
9. Conclusion
Appendix A. Extended List of Professional Behaviors
Appendix B. School Savvy Etiquette
Appendix C. Sample Scripts for Hard Conversations

"Our teaching culture is adverse to conflict. Having tools like this will move education forward as a profession."

Michael Grinder, National Director and Educational Consultant
NLP in Education

"A thoughtful and practical map for authentically engaging in and learning from having hard conversations. Abrams gently teaches us why having these conversations matter and how they can help us grow. Her work shines light on the landscape of personal and professional learning from engagement in hard conversations."

Eleanor Drago-Severson, Associate Professor of Educational Leadership
Teachers College, Columbia University

"A wonderful combination of coaching, consulting, and crafting a way of teaching us all to speak honestly in our relationships. From casual conversations to value conflicts, we learn to use and become sensitive to differences in gender, style, and position in this very appealing and important book. A must-read for teachers, principals, and district office personnel who care about developing a healthy school community."

Ann Lieberman, Senior Scholar
Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching

"This book has already changed my life. Just by reading it, my courage to have hard conversations has soared."

Beth Madison, Principal
George Middle School, Portland, OR

"A straightforward, practical and useful guide for engaging in difficult conversations."

Lauren Levin
School Social Work Journal, September 2010 (Vol. 35, No. 1)

I received it too late to add for this semester.

Professor Wayne OGDEN
Education Dept, Northeastern University
February 24, 2010

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ISBN: 9781412965002