Customer Review

27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Profoundly practical ideas, fun to experiment with, August 7, 2012
This review is from: Practice Perfect: 42 Rules for Getting Better at Getting Better (Hardcover)
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This is a wonderfully useful book for anyone teaching themselves or anybody else to do anything.

The book is loaded with practical ideas as the authors break down every aspect and angle of the learning process into forty-two very manageable steps or "rules," presented in forty-two brief chapters.

These rules can be applied in so many areas of life: not just school or music or sports but also for business and almost any kind of skill. I especially appreciate the many points having to do with the intelligent and effective use of modeling, drill, and feedback. There are lots of good ideas for planning practice sessions and for breaking down skills into manageable baby steps. This could be helpful for new teachers, as much of the mystery is taken out of teaching and learning. Students are likely to develop mastery, along with the bonuses of confidence and healthy self-respect.

Long sections of the book are really devoted to training teachers. Those who are only training students or themselves may not find those sections as useful. Still, there is so much to digest and experiment with in this book. Playing with these ideas is fun and brings new life to both teaching and learning.

The book often quotes the wonderfully inspiring words of top basketball coach John Wooden. There are also lots of references to coauthor Doug Lemov's own book, "Teach Like a ChampIon," another source of good ideas, mainly for classroom teaching.

The book concludes with two helpful appendices: (1) Teaching Techniques from "Teach Like a Champion"!and (2) Sample Practice Activities.

My one criticism of the book (4.5 stars) is that some of the forty-two rules could have been combined to make maybe 10 or 12 rules in order to make them easier to remember and apply.

All in all, though, this book has a great deal to offer. I look forward to years of growth and expansion through these great ideas.

Another recent book that is much less comprehensive but also fun and stimulating is "The Little Book of Talent," by Daniel Coyle.
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