Mainstream mini studies

7th April 2000 at 01:00
PUPILS WITH LEARNING DIFFICULTIES IN MAINSTREAM SCHOOLS. By Christina Tilstone, Penny Lacey, Jill Porter and Christopher Robertson. David Fulton pound;9.50

If size matters, this little book, intended for students and newly qualified teachers, is an exception to the rule. Into its 83 pages it packs a huge amount of information about children who experience difficulty at school. It is far from being a crammer, though, and it is all engagingly presented, with almost every point illustrated by a vignette of classroom life. These mini case studies - of children's difficulties or teachers' teaching approaches - give the whole book a lively feel and help to keep its feet on the ground.

There are two parts to the book: he first gives a potted explication of current thinking in special needs. There are sections here on, for example, labelling, keeping track of progress and what is meant by "need".

The second section concentrates on classroom practice. It explains how to identify needs, how children have different learning styles and how different teaching approaches can sometimes help to liberate a child's ability.

The last two chapters focus on the increasingly important issue of organisation for learning, with attention given especially to working with other people (such as learning assistants) and communication with others.

For its target audience, this book will be a real source of guidance and support.

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