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Changing Channels: Living (Sensibly) With Television, by Peggy Charren and Martin W. Sandler (Addison-Wesley, General Books Division, Reading, Mass. 01867; 272 pages, cloth $24.95, paper $11.95).

Television has a great impact on children, contend the authors of this guide to sensible living in the video age, and parents and teachers can work to help make that impact positive. Providing information about television licensing, advertisers, and network decisions, the authors examine television's role in shaping children's perceptions of the world and explore ways viewers can work to assure high-quality programming that teaches, rather than simply entertains. Ms. Charren is founder of Action for Children's Television, and Mr. Sandler is an Emmy-Award winning television producer.

High School Achievement: Public, Catholic, and Private Schools Compared, by James S. Coleman, Thomas Hoffer, and Sally Kilgore (Basic Books Inc. Publishers, 10 East 53rd St., New York, N.Y. 10022; 289 pages, cloth $20.75).

Catholic and other private high-school students academically outperform public-school students due to discipline and high academic standards, according to the widely publicized research findings detailed in this book. Based on their analysis of a government-sponsored survey of more than 58,000 American private- and public-high-school students, the authors conclude that private schools' ordered environment, respect for and involvement by teachers, and regular homework assignments are keys to increased student performance. Such factors, argue the authors, could be applied to public-school students to improve their performance, were it not for the declining quality of public schools, which is related to their diminishing emphasis on authority and discipline. Mr. Coleman teaches sociology at the University of Chicago, where Mr. Hoffer is a graduate student; Ms. Kilgore teaches sociology at Emory University in Atlanta.

Your Child Can Be A Super Reader, by Len Kusnetz (Learning House Publishers, 38 South St., Roslyn Heights, N.Y. 11577; 122 pages, paper $5.70).

The key to helping children become better readers, says the author of this guide for parents and teachers, is to convince them that reading is fun. Using nontraditional materials such as cereal boxes, advertisements, and comic books, the author outlines a home program for children in grades three to nine to encourage greater reading enjoyment, which the author argues will also build vocabulary and comprehension skills. Includes an annotated bibliography of recommended books and an explanation of reading-test scores. Mr. Kusnetz is a teacher and curriculum developer for the New York City school system.

Guides and Directories

Complete Book of School Public Relations: An Administrator's Manual and Guide, by Donovan R. Walling (Prentice-Hall, Inc., Professional Books, Englewood Cliffs, N.J. 07632; 222 pages, cloth $17.50).

Improved school public-relations programs encourage increased community involvement and financial support, according to the author. His book, for public- and private-school administrators in elementary and secondary education, discusses how to identify public-relations needs, establish a program, and evaluate its effects.

Directory of Schools Reported to Have Exemplary Discipline, by Gay Su Pinnell, Thomas Lasley, William W. Wayson, George Wynn, and the Phi Delta Kappa Commission on Excellence (Phi Delta Kappa Educational Foundation, Eighth St. and Union Ave., Box 789, Bloomington, Ind. 47402; 110 pages, paper $6, $5 for PDK members).

This directory lists 509 schools that have involved teachers, administrators, parents, and community members in achieving educational goals and improving student behavior. Also includes an explanation of the procedure for nominating schools for the directory and a list of demographic characteristics of the schools.

Handbook for Developing Schools with Good Discipline, by William W. Wayson, Gary G. DeVoss, Susan C. Kaeser, Thomas Lasley, Gay Su Pinnell, and the Phi Delta Kappa Commission on Excellence (Phi Delta Kappa Educational Foundation, Eighth St. and Union Ave., Box 789, Bloomington, Ind. 47402; 127 pages, paper $3.50, $3 for PDK members).

Based on the above directory of schools with exemplary discipline, the authors have compiled a guidebook for teachers and administrators. Includes common characteristics of well-disciplined schools, practical advice for improving discipline, plans for starting programs in a school, and a bibliography of additional resources.

Motivation, by Raymond J. Wlodkowski (National Education Association, 1201 16th St., NW, Washington, D.C. 20036; 32 pages, paper $2).

Learning cannot occur without motivation, says the author of this monograph for teachers. The booklet explores current theories of motivation and discusses the roles of both student and teacher in increasing motivation.

Other Resources

Energy and Education: Planning for Higher Prices and Potential Shortages, by Edith M. Petrock and Paul C. Bauman (Education Improvement Center, Education Commission of the States, 1860 Lincoln St., Suite 300, Denver, Colo. 80295; 63 pages, paper $4).

For school administrators, this booklet provides suggestions for controlling rising energy costs and information about federal policies on energy shortages and how they affect schools. Also includes the energy and education recommendations made by the State Energy and Education Task Force and a list of energy-conservation handbooks.

Update: Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service, 1982-83, edited by Andrea Stevens (Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. 20560; 144 pages, paper, free).

For prospectve exhibitors nationwide, this annual catalog lists Smithsonian Institution exhibitions in the fields of art, education, history, and science that are available to travel for locally-sponsored exhibitions. Includes an alphabetical list of exhibits; a subject index; information on rules and security requirements; and a list of the Smithsonian's publications, education guides, games, kits, and media presentations available to the public. A separate schedule of current exhibitions can be obtained by writing the above address.

Anne Bridgman

Vol. 02, Issue 17

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