A nose for the job;Books;Reviews

26th February 1999 at 00:00
CO-ORDINATING ENGLISH AT KEY STAGE 2. By Mick Waters and Tony Martin. Falmer Press pound;12.95

Sisyphus had it easy - co-ordinating English is much more of a challenge to mind, body and spirit than simply pushing a boulder up a mountain for eternity.

Help, however, is at hand. The authors of this excellent volume have gathered in key elements of best practice and made it readable, practical and in tune with the demands placed on a co-ordinator who also has a full-time class teaching commitment.

Every aspect of the job - documentation, inspection, monitoring, target-setting, et al - is examined. The book is always easy to read but never superficial. The authors accept from the outset that the role of English co-ordinator is both exciting and daunting, and have drawn on years of experience to produce a guide that should become an indispensable resource for both the experienced and novice co-ordinator. Students would also be well advised to seek out a copy.

With its clear structure the book can be dipped into or read cover to cover. The gentle humour that infuses the text - monitoring is defined as being "professionally nosy" - gives it a page-turning quality. The publisher's notes tell us that the authors "enjoy spending their time helping teachers make sense of the complicated world of the classroom". In this guide they do this very successfully.

Kevin Harcombe is head of Orchard Lea junior school, Fareham, Hampshire.

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