We offer several online book clubs per year. Each book club is a series of four 60-minute interactive discussions. 

Through these peer-facilitated, co-learning sessions, OPC Members and Associates will explore and discuss key concepts in the chosen book and how those concepts might inform practice as a school leader. For at least one session, the author would be invited to attend and answer questions or support the discussion. 

Participants will need to purchase the books in advance of the first session. Whenever possible, we try to obtain a discounted book price. If a discounted price is available, it will be detailed below. The rate applies to all OPC Members and Associate Members, whether you participate in the book club or not.

Book Clubs are open to all OPC Members. Participation in the book clubs is at no cost to Members and Associates. Non-Members welcome. We encourage broad and diverse input and participation in attending, recommending books, and facilitating sessions. 

Call for Titles!

If you are interested in suggesting a book for a future book club, and/or volunteering to facilitate the sessions  and/or writing a book review for the Register Magazine, complete our form. Potential facilitators need only have enthusiasm for reading the book and willingness to facilitate some conversation.

Suggestions and Volunteering

Spring 2024

Coolie Woman: The Odyssey of Indenture

Book cover with black and white portrait of a womanAuthor: Gaiutra Bahadur

Description: In 1903, a young woman sailed from India to Guiana as a “coolie”— the British name for indentured laborers who replaced the newly emancipated slaves on sugar plantations all around the world. Pregnant and traveling alone, this woman, like so many of the indentured, disappeared into history. Now, in Coolie Woman, her great-granddaughter Gaiutra Bahadur embarks on a journey into the past to find her. Traversing three continents and trawling through countless colonial archives, Bahadur excavates not only her great-grandmother’s story but also the repressed history of some quarter of a million other coolie women, shining a light on their complex lives.

Purchase: Canadian distribution is through Indigo.ca or Amazon.ca.

Meeting on Tuesdays:

  • March 26

  • April 9

  • April 23
  • May 7 *Meet the author

Time: 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. EDT

Cost: Free

Facilitator: Jasminie Singh, Toronto DSB 

Register

Cultivating Imagination in Leadership: Transforming Schools and Communities

Book cover with art denoting field of flowersEdited by: Gillian Judson and Meaghan Dougherty

Description: This comprehensive book provides a theoretical understanding of how imagination contributes to effective leadership, as well as practical tools all educational leaders can employ to cultivate their imaginations and the imaginations of others in their communities.

To support these goals, book chapters offer multiple perspectives on what imagination is, why it is essential for educational leaders, and how it can be developed. Contributions by leadership scholars and school-based leaders are organized around three themes: exploring possibilities, poetics of memory, and imagination's role in social justice and equity.

This work can now be used by individuals or within formal or informal learning communities to expand, deepen, and apply concepts. Expanding on Kieran Egan's theory of Imaginative Education, this book will help current and future leaders employ imagination to make sense of and address the day-to-day challenges they encounter.

Purchase: Canadian distributor, UTP Distribution, is offering a 15% discount off list price.

Meeting on Wednesdays:

  • April 3
  • April 17

  • May 1
  • May 15 *Meet the editors

Time: 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. EDT

Cost: Free

Facilitator: Lawrence DeMaeyer, Professional Learning Advisor, OPC

Register

Unearthing Joy: A Guide to Culturally and Historically Responsive Teaching and Learning

Book cover with art depicting multicoloured flowersAuthor: Gholdy Muhammad

Description: In this sequel to Cultivating Genius, Gholdy Muhammad adds a fifth pursuit—joy—to her groundbreaking framework. Dr. Muhammad shows how joy, which is rooted in the cultural and historical realities of Black students, can enhance our efforts to cultivate identity, skills, intellect, and criticality for ALL students, giving them a powerful purpose to learn and contribute to the world. Dr. Muhammad’s wise implementation advice is paired with model lessons that span subjects and grade levels.

Purchase: Canadian distribution is through your Scholastic Consultant (book order form) or Amazon.ca.

Meeting on Thursdays:

  • April 11

  • April 25

  • May 9
  • May 23

Time: 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. EDT

Cost: Free

Facilitators: Franca Ostella and Wendy Banhan, Toronto DSB

Register

Winter 2024

Building Thinking Classrooms in Mathematics (K-12)

Book coverAuthor: Peter Liljedahl

Description: A thinking student is an engaged student. Sparked by observing teachers struggle to implement rich mathematics tasks to engage students in deep thinking, Peter Liljedahl has translated his 15 years of research into this practical guide on how to move toward a thinking classroom. 

This guide:

  • Provides the what, why, and how of each practice and answers teachers’ most frequently asked questions
  • Includes firsthand accounts of how these practices foster thinking through teacher and student interviews and student work samples
  • Offers a plethora of macro moves, micro moves, and rich tasks to get started
  • Organizes the 14 practices into four toolkits that can be implemented in order and built on throughout the year

When combined, these unique research-based practices create the optimal conditions for learner-centered, student-owned deep mathematical thinking and learning, and have the power to transform mathematics classrooms like never before.

Purchase: Canadian distribution is through Corwin with volume discount or Amazon.ca.

Meetings on Thursdays:

  • January 25, 2024
  • February 8
  • February 22
  • March 7

Time: 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. EST

Cost: Free

Facilitator: Mervi Salo, Toronto DSB

Sessions in progress

Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead

Book coverAuthor: Brené Brown

Description: In a world where “never enough” dominates and feeling afraid has become second nature, vulnerability is subversive. Uncomfortable. It’s even a little dangerous at times. And without question, putting ourselves out there means there’s a far greater risk of getting criticized or feeling hurt. But when we step back and examine our lives, we will find that nothing is as uncomfortable, dangerous, or hurtful as standing on the outside looking in and wondering what it would be like if we had the courage to step into the arena. 

Daring Greatly is a practice and a powerful vision for letting ourselves be seen. 

Purchase: Canadian distribution is through Indigo.ca and Amazon.ca.

Meeting on Tuesdays:

  • January 23, 2024

  • February 6

  • February 20

  • March 5

Time: 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. EST

Cost: Free

Facilitator: Julie Chouinard, Ottawa-Carlton DSB 

Sessions in progress

Past Book Clubs

We maintain a list of all past book clubs. If you would like to recommend a book for our book clubs, please check this list to see if we have already offered the title. The list might also be useful if you are looking for a book to read for your own professional growth.

Organized by Session Offered

 

Title Author(s) Session Date
The NEW team Habits Anthony Kim Winter 2020
Instructional Leadership Peter DeWitt Winter 2020
Breaking the Ocean Annahid Dashtgard Spring 2020
Deep Diversity Shakil Choudhury Spring 2020
Dare to Lead Brene Brown Spring 2020
21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act: Helping Canadians Make Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples a Reality Bob Joseph Summer 2020
Devil is in the Details Michael Fullan Summer 2020
Quality Implemetation Jenni Donohoo and Steven Katz Summer 2020
Challenging Mindset James Nottingham Summer 2020
Empathy Effect Helen Riess Fall 2020
The Skin We're In Desmond Cole Fall 2020
10 Mindframes for Leaders John Hattie Fall 2020
Unsettling Canada:
A National Wake-up Call
Arthur Manuel and
Ronald M. Derrickson
Winter 2021
Engage Every Family Steven M. Constantino Winter 2021
Humanizing Distance Learning: Centering Equity and Humanity in Times of Crisis Paul France Winter 2021
Reframed Self-Reg for A Just Society Stuart Shanker Spring 2021
Getting Ready for Benjamin:
Preparing Teachers for Sexual Diversity
in the Classroom
Rita M. Kissen Spring 2021
Culturally Responsive School Leadership Muhammad Khalifa Summer 2021
The Blueprint: 6 Practical Steps to Lift Your Leadership to New Heights Doug Conant Summer 2021
Collective Student Efficacy
Developing Independent and Inter-Dependent Learners
John Hattie
Douglas Fisher
Nancy Frey
Shirley Clarke
Summer 2021
How to be an Anti Racist Ibrahim Kendi Fall 2021
Cultivating Genius Dr. Goldy Mohammed Fall 2021
Unreconciled: Family, Truth, and Indigenous Resistance Jesse Wente Winter 2022
Leading from the Inside Out Charles Pascal Winter 2022
Lead From Where You Are Joe Sanfelippo Fall 2022
Street Data Shane Safir, Jamila Dugan Fall 2022
My Grandmother's Hands Resmaa Menakem Fall 2022

From the Ashes: My Story of Being Métis, Homeless, and Finding My Way

Jesse Thistle Winter 2023

Stuck Improving: Racial Equity and School Leadership

Dr. Decoteau J. Irby Winter 2023

Coaching for Equity: Conversations That Change Practice

 Elene Aguilar Spring 2023
Indians on Vacation  Thomas King Spring 2023
Enacting Anti-racist and Activist Pedagogies in Teacher Education: Canadian Perspectives Ardavan Eizadirad, Zuhra Abawi and Andrew B. Campbell Fall 2023
Reading Above the Fray Julia B. Lindsey Fall 2023

The Ontario Principals’ Council is committed to accommodating the individual needs of our Members and learning session participants, in accordance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA). Our professional learning offerings provide access to a variety of AODA compliant mechanisms, including technologies, to share, collaborate and connect across Ontario and beyond. If you require accommodation, please contact learning@principals.ca or call 416-322-6600 and ask to speak with a member of our professional learning team.