News In Print

April 04, 1984 3 min read
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Growing Minds: On Becoming a Teacher, by Herbert Kohl (Harper & Row, 10 East 53rd St., New York, N.Y. 10022; 181 pages, $13.95).

An effective teacher is committed to the development of the child rather than to the regimented training of the pupil, Mr. Kohl maintains in this manifesto on purposeful teaching. For teachers, prospective teachers, and parents, the book explains the craft of teaching and addresses ways to help students develop thinking skills. Mr. Kohl advises teachers to be flexible with course content, to focus on student discussion and experimentation, and to be willing to adjust subject-area content to student responses. In stories of classroom experiences, tales of his early teaching years, and anecdotes about students and fellow teachers, the author shares his views on developing young minds. Mr. Kohl is a teacher and the author of Thirty-Six Children and The Open Classroom.

The Renewal and Improvement of Secondary Education: Concepts and Practices, by Herbert J. Klausmeier, James M. Lipham, and John C. Daresh (The University Press of America, P.O. Box 19101, Washington, D.C. 20036; 362 pages, cloth $24.75, paper $12.75).

To improve education and produce effective schools, practitioners need increased commitment from the public and from other educators, and a research-validated model to guide their efforts, contend the authors. They present three tested improvement strategies--instructional, administrative, and community-based--and various organizational structures that would make change easier. Practitioners who use the design set forth in the book, the authors maintain, can provide a means for helping their school attain its improvement goals. A related manual provides a step-by-step method for putting the design into practice.

Unions and Public Schools: The Effect of Collective Bargaining on American Education, by Randall W. Eberts and Joe A. Stone (Lexington Books, D.C. Heath and Company, 125 Spring St., Lexington, Mass. 02173; 113 pages, $24).

Because collective bargaining has become a principal mechanism for decisionmaking in public education, it must be better understood before schooling can be made more effective, argue the authors of this book. In their analysis of collective bargaining’s effects on schools, Mr. Eberts and Mr. Stone address issues of union versus nonunion salaries, teachers’ and administrators’ contracts, educators’ working conditions, and student achievement. The authors teach economics at the University of Oregon.

Guides and Directories

Circles of Learning: Cooperation in the Classroom, by David W. Johnson, Roger T. Johnson, Edythe Johnson Holubec, and Patricia Roy (Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, 225 North Washington St., Alexandria, Va. 22314; 94 pages, paper $8.50).

Maintaining not only that cooperation is more valuable than competition in the learning process, but that it is a key to improved education, the authors explain the basic elements of group learning and show how teachers can work such elements into the curriculum. The book includes an analysis of the research on cooperative learning and the ways students can be taught cooperative skills.

Other Resources

Aliteracy: People Who Can Read But Won’t, edited by Nick Thimmesch (American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, 1150 17th St., N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036; 72 pages, paper $3.95).

Ten contributors address the sources and implications of “aliteracy"--the neologism describing not the lack of ability, but of interest, in reading. The essays cover the decline of language skills, the impact of television, and the simplification of books. In papers that represent the proceedings of a conference sponsored by the American Enterprise Institute, the authors discuss the extent of aliteracy, its effect on the rest of society, and the value of literacy in an increasingly technological era. The role of schools in teaching reading is also explored.

Safety Zone: A Book Teaching Child Abduction Prevention Skills, by Linda D. Meyer (The Chas. Franklin Press, 18409 90th Ave. West, Edmonds, Wash. 98020; 39 pages, cloth $8, paper $3).

Designed to be read to children by adults, this book teaches children how to avoid being abducted. The book includes a resource list of organizations and books, games that teach safety tips, and advice on what to do when a child is abducted.

--Anne Bridgman

A version of this article appeared in the April 04, 1984 edition of Education Week as News In Print

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