We hope all of our readers have a safe and relaxing holiday break. We know many of you are avid bookworms, so we’ve reached out to some AITSL Board members for recommended titles to pack in your holiday suitcase.




John Hattie

From John Hattie

Chairman / Non-executive director. Read more about John here: https://www.aitsl.edu.au/about-aitsl/people/john-hattie

I am an avid reader and finished 173 novels so far this year! The stand out was Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens.

A wild child, uneducated, dirt-poor, North Carolina shore girl (where I spent seven years). It is beautiful, relaxing, gripping, and mysterious — all in one book. She does learn to read, is super smart, but then an event (no spoiler here) happens which turns the book into a must-read. I was torn between hurrying to finish it to see what happens and reading it slowly to savour the mood and the charm. Good for the beach — so enjoy.




Jennifer Buckingham

From Jennifer Buckingham

Non-executive director. Read more about Jennifer here: https://www.aitsl.edu.au/about-aitsl/people/jennifer-buckingham

My two recommended books are by local authors and educators. Both present essential information for teachers but can be enjoyed by anyone interested in education: The Truth About Teaching: An Evidence-Informed Guide for New Teachers by Greg Ashman (Sage, 2018) and Reading for Life: High Quality Literacy Instruction for All by Lyn Stone (David Fulton, 2019) [Disclaimer: I know both authors].

Ashman’s book outlines research evidence that is relevant to teachers on a broad range of topics, including pedagogy, curriculum, and classroom management, in an accessible style that doesn’t compromise on intellectual rigour. Stone’s book is an often entertaining antidote to most literacy teaching texts, with practical and evidence-based advice for teachers and parents.




Renez Lammon

From Renez Lammon

Non-executive director. Read more about Renez here: https://www.aitsl.edu.au/about-aitsl/people/renez-lammon

Brain Rules by John Medina. I loved reading this book as it gave me an insight into how the brain works. In knowing about the brain, I am able to think about some of the teaching strategies I can use to best support the students in my class.

Teach Like a Champion 2.0 by Doug Lemov. I like this book because it has some great teaching strategies that you can use. As a coach and a mentor, this book helps me to clearly articulate some of the strategies that are used in classrooms.

Leading Collaborative Learning: Empowering Excellence by Lyn Sharratt and Beate Planche. This is a great book to support teachers and leaders in working collaboratively in schools.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R Covey. A classic! Great for personal growth.




Rob Nairn

From Rob Nairn

Non-executive director. Read more about Rob here: https://www.aitsl.edu.au/about-aitsl/people/robert-nairn

The Spirit Level: Why Equality is Better for Everyone by Kate Pickett and Richard G. Wilkinson

Big Wins, Small Steps: How to Lead For and With Creativity by Ronald A Beghetto

Two Brothers by Ben Elton