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Education Aims & Objectives

Pushing the Limits

How Schools Can Prepare Our Children Today for the Challenges of Tomorrow

by (author) Kelly Gallagher-MacKay & Nancy Steinhauer

Doubleday Canada
Initial publish date
Aug 2017
Aims & Objectives, Decision-Making & Problem Solving, Professional Development
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Aug 2017
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Aug 2019
    List Price

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How do we prepare children for a future we can't even imagine?

Across Canada, a debate swirls around what our children will need to know in the face of huge technological, economic, social and political change. The question has become an ideological battleground, and there is a hunger for a deeper understanding of what we should be doing to prepare children now for the challenges of the future. This timely, important book is an answer to that call.

In Pushing the Limits, Kelly Gallagher-Mackay and Nancy Steinhauer draw on their experiences as educational leaders to reveal that the schools of the future exist in the here and now. They introduce us to extraordinary Canadian public schools, deeply rooted in their communities, that are fostering innovators, nimble problem-solvers and engaged citizens, boosting math comprehension, cultivating creativity and using technology to broaden the parameters of learning. And they explore why the role of schools is expanding to nurture students' social-emotional skills and growth mindsets, and how vital this broader definition of education is to children's long-term health, happiness and success. This book provides a vision of what schooling can and should look like in our rapidly shifting world and explores how we—parents and teachers—can realize this vision together.

About the authors

Kelly Gallagher-Mackay is an assistant professor in the Law and Society Program at Wilfrid Laurier University.

Kelly Gallagher-MacKay's profile page

Nancy Steinhauer's profile page


  • Short-listed, The Donner Prize

Editorial Reviews

Shortlisted for the 2017/18 Donner Prize

"Pushing the Limits is a real gem of a book. In a clear, accessible manner, the authors outline how we can have the schools our kids deserve. Using humane real life examples, they show how some of the most difficult challenges facing our classrooms today can be overcome with a focus on high-quality relationships, pedagogy and belief in children's competence. A real beacon of hope—I couldn't put it down." —Jean M. Clinton, M.D., child psychiatrist; co-author of Learning Social Literacy

"Pushing the Limits is a book about the transformations of children's lives through magnificent teaching and leading. It's engaging, enlightening and elevating. Once you open it, you won't be able to put it down." —Andy Hargreaves, Brennan Chair in Education, Boston College; President of the International Congress of School Effectiveness and Improvement

"This is some of the most hopeful writing on education I've read in a long time. Pushing the Limits should be essential reading for everyone who cares about public education, young people and the best way to ensure that our next generations are both successful as individuals and able to provide solutions for our complex social, environmental and economic challenges." —Annie Kidder, Executive Director, People for Education

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