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Accelerated Learning in the Classroom
As I began training teachers in some of the techniques you will find described in other articles, I was often asked if I knew of or had met Alistair Smith. I hadn't but his name kept coming up time and time again and the reports about him were all extremely positive. Then last year at a Learning Conference I had the pleasure to see him speak on Accelerated Learning. A brilliant presenter with a great track record and relevant experience, I was struck by not only his engaging style and entertaining delivery but by the depth and breadth of his knowledge. I instantly vowed to get hold of one of his books and "Accelerated Learning in the Classroom" was the one I purchased.
Its structure and outline content is similar to many other books in that it covers the brain, self esteem, models of learning, the learning environment and memory systems but the magic of the book is the significantly high amount of practical advice that clearly comes from personal experience. This is a teacher's book written by a (ex)teacher with the needs of teachers firmly in mind. It is very well illustrated with appropriate diagrams and cartoons to amplify and reinforce the messages. Each section is previewed in bullet form and then summarised with a Mind Map and questions to assist your review of the material that you have covered. It includes specific advice on how to apply the theory and gives examples of teachers who have done just that.
I heard someone say recently that if you want to learn something to apply to your work don't listen to academic theorists because they will tell you lots of great information but have no practical experience on how to apply it. The best thing to do is to find someone who has achieved what you want to do and find out how they did it. In "Accelerated Learning in the Classroom", Alistair Smith combines a detailed and thorough theoretical knowledge of the subject with vast personal practical experience.
I like this book and think that if you are a teacher your will definitely benefit from the advice it contains. However it has such great information in it that it is very appropriate for parents to give them ways to help their kids. And if you are a corporate trainer then you should buy it too.
Accelerated Learning in the Classroom by Alistair Smith ISBN Number 1-85539-034-5 is published by Network Educational Press.
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4th March 1998: