Top critical review
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Getting the Buggers to behave, behave, behave....
on 10 August 2003
This book has a lot of great reviews and it is, indeed, a decent book for teachers. I'm a PGCE student and so I perhaps don't have as much right to judge it. However, my main criticism is with the writing style and lay-out.
The book is very repetitive: the same points are brought up over and over again throughout and not really in any more depth than the first time they were mentioned. In one instance, the exact same sentence was used twice on the same page, but with one noun changed.
The majority of the advice given is common sense and the topics which had the potential to be very interesting and useful (in my opinion, those connected to the use of body language, psychology and classroon lay-out), are only dealt with very superficially. I understand that this book is only meant as a practical guide, but, considering it is aimed at professionals, it seems to have been dumbed down. Either that or Sue Cowley was stuck for extra material for the second edition (I haven't read the first), hence the constant repetition of basic concepts without any expansion.
The examples given of a classroom situation and how it could be managed in a good or a bad way, are, although pretty simplistic, somewhat useful... or at least entertaining.
All in all, the book contains a few good tips, but in my humble opinion, these could have been written on a single hand-out sheet.