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Curriculum & Leadership Journal
An electronic journal for leaders in education
ISSN: 1448-0743
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New publications

12 to 18: A Qualitative Longitudinal Study of Students, Values and Differences in Australian Schools

Lyn Yates, Julie McLeod
ACSA,  2007
The report of an eight-year study outlines findings related to the development of secondary students’ decision-making processes, values and sense of self. The study tracked male and female students from four different schools, from the start of secondary education until the first year beyond school. The authors explore how the different backgrounds of each student lead to different experiences at the same school, and how each student’s individual and family beliefs interacted with school values. The book reflects on participants’ gender concepts, and may inspire further debate on current issues such as public and private education, educational inequality and the role of schools in developing citizenship and values. (Adapted from publisher's description.)

Subject Headings

Secondary education
Values education

Talking, Drawing, Writing: Lessons for Our Youngest Writers

Martha Horn, Mary Ellen Giacobbe
Classroom-based examples are used to show how teachers can use talking, drawing and writing to develop students’ written literacy. The book focuses on developing a broader view of writing in the classroom, and suggests the use of sketching to develop observation skills and strategies for encouraging students to write about what they know. The suggested early years lessons may be adapted for older grades. They cover oral storytelling, drawing, writing words, assessment, introducing booklets, and helping writers progress. Each lesson is outlined in terms of students’ existing skills, suggested learning, materials, language to use in class, subsequent lesson ideas, and suggestions of children’s literature where relevant. (Adapted from distributor's description. See also publisher's description.)

Key Learning Areas


Subject Headings

English language teaching

Math Doesn't Suck: How to Survive Middle School Math Without Losing Your Mind or Breaking a Nail

Danica McKellar
Penguin,  2007

Dismayed by the media’s association of ‘fun and glamorous,' with ‘dumb and irresponsible,’ actress Danica McKellar aims to help girls reach success in maths. The book uses real life examples and step-by-step instruction to explain key middle school concepts, such as fractions, percentages and algebraic thinking. Homework tips, ways to overcome test anxiety and profiles of three successful female mathematicians are included. Real life examples are used throughout, and offers engaging activities such as maths horoscopes and maths personality quizzes. (Adapted from publisher's description and article in The Washington Post, 29 July 2007. See author's website for further information.)

Key Learning Areas


Subject Headings

United States of America (USA)
Middle schooling
Girls' education

How to Plan for Behaviour Development and Classroom Management: Maximising Student Engagement

Bob Cope
This book, written by an academic from the Queensland University of Technology, explores how teachers can develop and maintain positive classroom behaviour to enhance learning. The book aims to offer a simple model to help existing and pre-service teachers develop their own classroom behaviour plan. Each chapter starts with a classroom scenario on a specific issue, and outlines drawing on related behaviour models and theories. Topics covered include managing the beginning of the year, developing efficient and appropriate routines, designing the physical environment for participation, student involvement and accountability, praise, teacher–student communication, maintaining on-task behaviour, the pitfalls of punishment and dealing with difficult situations. Behaviour models covered include Canter’s Assertive Discipline, Gordon’s Teacher Effectiveness Training, Bill Rogers’ Decisive Discipline and Dreikurs’ The Perils of Praise. (Adapted from distributor's description.)

Subject Headings

Classroom management
Behaviour management

Public Funding of Australian Schools: the Facts

Research commissioned by the AISV is presented in this report. The research found that the 'total level of public funding for each government school student is considerably greater than total public funding for non-government school students'. It has found that 'each student at an independent school costs the taxpayer about half the average amount of each student at a government school'. It has also found that the 'total level of public funding for each government school student is considerably greater than total public funding for non-government school students'. (Adapted from AISV media release 20 August 2007. See also article in The Australian and report in The Age, both 20 August 2007.)

Subject Headings

Private schools
Education finance
Educational evaluation

Maintaining, Sustaining and Refueling Leaders: A National Overview of Services and Resources for Principal Wellbeing in the Primary Sector

Dr Kathy Lacey
This report, based on a survey over 2,600 primary principals from around Australia, reviews the provision of support and welfare services for school leaders across Government, Independent and Catholic schools. Not wanting to show weakness to other staff by using system and school-based counselling services, the principals reported paying for independent counsellors. Many were unaware of the support available to them, with the report calling for increased promotion of existing resources. The principals showed a preference for sabbatical-based study leave, rather than the current provision of extra annual or long-service leave. Catholic schools are found to be the most effective in supporting principals, in terms of paid sabbaticals, counselling access, and paid study and health check leave, followed by Government and then Independent school systems. (Adapted from press release, 14 August 2007.)

Subject Headings

Primary education
School principals
School administration
School leadership