22nd June 2001 at 01:00
CLICKON... ICT SKILLS FOR TEACHERS. Word Processing. Spreadsheets and Databases. Presentations and Publications. Searching. Heinemann pound;15.95 each. Available from TES Direct

This series offers waffle-free information on basic computing skills for teachers. The books are informative and well laid-out, but not for those new to computers.

Clickon... Word Processing assumes the least knowledge and starts by debunking the jargon before targeting specific needs. All the books require PC access and Microsoft software, and I like the boxes, including teaching, managing and planning ideas, cross-curricular links, key words and "now I can" statements. The key here is to take your time. You'll also be introduced to the world of DTP. Then you can move on to Presentations and Publications.

Clickon... Spreadsheets and Databases asumes you want to use Excel and Access. Chapters start with a key question - how can I get started with data handling? - and cover everything from what a database is, to copying formulae to non-adjacent cells.

The most interesting addition is Clickon... Searching. The idea is to give access to information wherever it is - CD-Rom or internet - and help you to incorporate it into your work. Any book that refers to specific software will date, but opting for Microsoft standards ensures the basics will remain much the same, except Searching.

It's great to see an ICT series aimed at teachers through its content as well as its title. Well worth the money, as the alternative is working through less friendly manuals.

Pam Turnbull is science co-ordinator at the Heys primary school, Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancashire

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