Toll, C. (2008). Surviving but not yet Thriving. International Reading Association.

Author: Cathy Toll

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Cathy Toll’s most recent book, Surviving but not yet Thriving, offers practicing literacy coaches a way to reflect on their current practices , consider new directions, and reconsider their roles as literacy leaders. This is the first book for practicing coaches, whereas most literacy coaching literature focuses on coaches new to the field. Toll shows literacy coaches what it really means to “thrive” by exploring what is should “look like” and “sound like” so that the work done by literacy coaches is meaningful, purposeful and effects change within the school community. Essential questions posed by literacy coaches with whom Toll has worked, guide the reader through each chapter of the book. Each question addresses a challenge facing the role and work of literacy coaches. Literacy coaches often feel isolated by their work. As years progress, they become emeshed the minutia of their daily lives: coaching observations, coaching meetings, literacy meetings and data analysis. Toll offers coaches a way to re-center; she encourages them to evaluate the purposes, goals and aims of the literacy coaching programs in their buildings or districts. She guides readers through difficult situations that may force literacy coaches into survival model: strained coaching conversations, negative attitudes toward change, administrative resistance, standardized testing pressures and other challenges facing literacy coaches daily. Principals and other literacy leaders who work with literacy coaches will gain an understanding of how they can support their coaches’ progress and development. Literacy coaches will finish this book feeling good about the work they have accomplished and ready to evaluate their current practices.

Date Added: 10/20/2008



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