Rockport Public Library hosts the following book clubs. We would be happy to have you join us.
How do other countries create "smarter" kids? In a handful of nations, virtually all children are learning to make complex arguments and solve problems they've never seen before. They are learning to think, in other words, and to thrive in the modern economy. What is it like to be a child in the world's new education superpowers?
In a global quest to find answers for our own children, author and Time magazine journalist Amanda Ripley follows three Americans embed-ded in these countries for one year. Kim, fifteen, raises $10,000 so she can move from Oklahoma to Finland; Eric, eighteen, exchanges a high-achieving Minnesota suburb for a booming city in South Korea; and Tom, seventeen, leaves a historic Pennsylvania village for Poland. Through these young informants, Ripley meets battle-scarred reformers, sleep-deprived zombie students, and a teacher who earns $4 million a year. Their stories, along with groundbreaking research into learning in other cultures, reveal a pattern of startling transformation: none of these countries had many "smart" kids a few decades ago.
Things had changed. Teaching had become more rigorous; parents had focused on things that mattered; and children had bought into the promise of education. A journalistic tour de force, The Smartest Kids in the World is a book about building resilience in a new world-as told by the young Americans who have the most at stake
History Book Club
The History Book Club will meet on
Wednesday, December 4, at 7:00 p.m.
to discuss "The Labor Movement in the United States, 1900-2013".
Group leader Sam Coulbourn invites you to "read any book that interests you on the Labor Movement from 1900 to the present: Taft Hartley, John L. Lewis, the IWW, CIO, the ILGWU, Strikebreakers, FDR and Labor, Eugene V. Debs, Frances Perkins -- whatever suits you!"
Sam says, "You're invited to prepare a review of your book, but this is not school. If you'd rather come and brief the group on the high points of your reading, that's fine! and if you'd like to just sit in an share in the discussion, you are most welcome!"
Sunday Book Chat
Enzo knows he is different from other dogs: a philosopher with a nearly human soul (and an obsession with opposable thumbs), he has educated himself by watching television extensively, and by listening very closely to the words of his master, Denny Swift, an up-and-coming race car driver. Through Denny, Enzo has gained tremendous insight into the human condition, and he sees that life, like racing, isn't simply about going fast. Using the techniques needed on the race track, one can successfully navigate all of life's ordeals.
On the eve of his death, Enzo takes stock of his life, recalling all that he and his family have been through: the sacrifices Denny has made to succeed professionally; the unexpected loss of Eve, Denny's wife; the three-year battle over their daughter, Zoe, whose maternal grandparents pulled every string to gain custody. In the end, despite what he sees as his own limitations, Enzo comes through heroically to preserve the Swift family, holding in his heart the dream that Denny will become a racing champion with Zoe at his side. Having learned what it takes to be a compassionate and successful person, the wise canine can barely wait until his next lifetime, when he is sure he will return as a man. A heart-wrenching but deeply funny and ultimately uplifting story of family, love, loyalty, and hope, The Art of Racing in the Rain is a beautifully crafted and captivating look at the wonders and absurdities of human life . . . as only a dog could tell it.
The Poetry Readers will meet on
Thursday, Jan. 9, at 4:00 p.m. in the Brenner Friends Room to discuss Collected Poems 1922-1938 by E. E. Cummings
Cummings was among the most influential, widely read, and revered modernist poets. He presented romantic attitudes in technically experimental verse. His poems are not only ideas but crafted physical objects which, in their nonlogical structure, grant fresh perspectives into reality.
In his publications E. E. Cummings gave his name in lowercase letters without punctuation (e e cummings); this was part of his concern for the typography, syntax, and visual form of his poetry. He worked in the Emersonian tradition of romantic transcendentalism, which encouraged experimentation, and may have been influenced also by Walt Whitman, the poet that Ralph Waldo Emerson had personally encouraged. Cummings's many awards included an Academy of American Poets Fellowship, two Guggenheim Fellowships, and the Bollingen Prize.
The Shakespeare Readers will meet on Monday, January 13, at 4:00 p.m. in the Trustees Room to discuss Henry VI, Part 2. Copies of the play are available at the library's main desk.
Rockport Book Group
The Rockport Book group's daytime session meets the first Thursday of every month, the evening group meets the second Wednesday of every month. For information on how to join this group or to start your own group, please contact Elizabeth Reed, book group coordinator by email: firstname.lastname@example.org