Short story: By the Time we get to Arizona by Madeleine Ashby (2014), read in the Hieroglyph: Stories and Visions for a Better Future anthology, edited by Ed Finn. Highly Recommended.
Poem: Hymn to Intellectual Beauty, listened to through Librivox. Recommended.
Essay: We Should Teach for Mastery, not Teach for Tests by Sal Khan, listen to on the TEDTalks podcast, from September 2016. Highly Recommended.