The IDEAS Book group provides an opportunity for educators from IDEAS and EDCO districts to meet and share thoughts on the selected books and to discuss how they relate to educational practices and current events.


The book group meets eight times over the school year from 3:45 to 5:45.

I send out an email each month to remind book group members of the upcoming meeting.  You only need to reply if you can attend.

There is no commitment to attend all meetings.

2 Contact hours will be awarded for attendance per each meeting.


The books selected for our meetings this year are:


We Were Eight Years in Power by Ta-nehisi Coates

This book features Coates’s iconic essays first published in The Atlantic, including “Fear of a Black President,” “The Case for Reparations,” and “The Black Family in the Age of Mass Incarceration,” along with eight fresh essays that revisit each year of the Obama administration through Coates’s own experiences.

October 11th at Needham High School from 3:45-5:45


The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.

November 8th at the Brooks School in Lincoln from 3:45-5:45


Lies My Teacher Taught Me by James Loewen

Thought provoking, nonpartisan, and often shocking, Loewen unveils the real America in this iconoclastic classic beloved by high school teachers, history buffs, and enlightened citizens across the country.

December 6th at Needham High School from 3:45-5:45


You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me by Sherman Alexie

This is an extraordinary look at the complicated relationship between a remarkable mother and an equally remarkable son, set, mostly, in the Spokane Indian Reservation where Alexie spent his childhood.  Passages of verse lead to passages of prose — but it’s readable, unpretentious, funny and deeply compassionate.

January 10th at the Brooks School in Lincoln from 3:45-5:45



Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue

A debut novel about marriage, immigration, class, race, and the trapdoors in the American Dream—the story of a young Cameroonian couple making a new life in New York just as the Great Recession upends the economy.

February 7th at Needham High School from 3:45-5:45


So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

Oluo offers an accessible take on the racial landscape in America, addressing issues ofprivilege, police brutality, intersectionality, micro-aggressions, the Black Lives Matter movement, and the “N” word. Oluo answers the questions readers don’t dare ask, and explains the concepts that continue to elude everyday Americans.

March 14th at the Brooks School in Lincoln from 3:45-5:45


In the Midst of Winter by Isabel Allende

Isabel Allende returns with a sweeping novel about three very different people who are brought together in a mesmerizing story that journeys from present-day Brooklyn to Guatemala in the recent past to 1970s .

April 11th at Needham High School from 3:45-5:45


Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson

A powerful true story about the potential for mercy to redeem us, and a clarion call to fix our broken system of justice.  Stevenson was a young lawyer when he founded the Equal Justice Initiative, a legal practice dedicated to defending those most desperate and in need. One of his first cases was that of Walter McMillian, a young man who was sentenced to die for a notorious murder he insisted he didn’t commit.

May 9th at the Brooks School in Lincoln from 3:45-5:45


For more information about the IDEAS Book Group please contact me at