A collection of exercises seeks to help teachers create a strong and supportive classroom atmosphere.
In this education book, Burns (On the Board, 2017, etc.) provides direction for instructors looking to mold a healthy learning environment in the first days of a new class. The activities are intended as icebreakers and introductions to the teacher and classmates, but are also designed to furnish educational value while building the personal bonds that are an important component of the learning process. Each exercise features guidance as to how long it should take, what materials are needed, and what skills students will be employing over the course of the lesson. The strategies are flexible, presented in the context of an English as a second language classroom, but can easily be adapted to other subjects and used with either adult or child students. Some of the lessons (syllabus scavenger hunt, study habit true and false) focus more on setting expectations for the classroom, while others allow students to get acquainted with one another (fun fact memory chain, identity circles) or begin small group work (sorting line, pyramid discussion). Burns reminds teachers that these exercises allow them to learn from their students as well (“If you start using some of those phrases in their native language, students will see that you view them as complex human beings with an identity and culture outside of the classroom”). The book delivers plenty of advice for teachers aiming to implement these tactics in the classroom and includes many sample handouts. With solid pedagogical explanations for the exercises rendered in these pages, Burns offers a worthy professional tool for fellow teachers and supplies insights based on experience (“Even if your class is supposed to be at the same level, they may have different competences in the language needed for this activity”), demonstrating the theoretical and practical concepts addressed in the text.
A useful group of recommended activities, with examples and documents, to assist educators in establishing positive classroom dynamics.
Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.
Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").
Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)