These books have helped inform the philosophy and practice of Southshire Community School over the years:

  • First, Do No Harm: Progressive Education in a Time of Existential Risk, Steve Nelson, 2016
  • Starting Strong: A Different Look at Children, Schools, and Standards, Patricia Carini, 2001 [1]
  • Her Story: Women that Changed the World, Ruth Ashby and Deborah Gore Ohrn, 1995
  • Kids Are Worth It!: Giving Your Child the Gift of Inner Discipline, Barbara Coloroso, 1994
  • Multiple Intelligences: New Horizons in Theory and Practice, Howard Gardner, 1993 & 2006 (revised)
  • Dumbing Us Down, John Taylor Gatto, 1992
  • In Their Own Way: Discovering and Encouraging Your Child’s Personal Learning Style, Thomas Armstrong, 1987
  • The Incarnating Child, Joan Salter, 1987
  • The Erosion of Childhood, Valerie Polakow, 1982
  • Toward Wholeness: Rudolf Steiner Education in America, Mary C. Richards, 1980
  • The Art of Seeing and the Visibility of the Person, Patricia Carini, 1979 [1]
  • The Plug-In Drug: Television, Computers, and Family Life, Marie Winn, 1977 & 2002 (revised & retitled)
  • Understanding Your [One to Eighteen]-Year Old, Louise Bates Ames, 1976-1988 (several books)
  • Deschooling Society, Ivan Illich, Marion Boyars, 1971
  • How Children Learn, John Holt, 1967 & 1983 (revised)
  • The Absorbent Mind, Maria Montessori, 1949 [2]
  • From Childhood to Adolescence: Including ‘Erdkinder’ and the Functions of the University, Maria Montessori [2], 1948 & 1973 (English translation)
  • Logic: The Theory of Inquiry, John Dewey, 1938
  • Democracy and Education, John Dewey, 1916
  • The Child and the Curriculum, John Dewey, 1902
  • The School and Society, John Dewey, 1900

[1]: Southshire was founded by teachers trained at the The Prospect School of North Bennington, VT, which Patricia Carini co-founded in 1965. Southshire inherited much of its philosophy and practice from Prospect. The Prospect Archive of Children’s Work is available online at

[2]: Southshire is not a Montessori school, but many of the themes and ideas articulated by Maria Montessori are also important to the school.