Originally published in 1989. Drawing on extensive teaching and research experience, Bernadette Walsh provides a practical approach to teaching pupils with language learning difficulties in the secondary school. Many of these pupils enter secondary school believing themselves to be failures in all areas because of their inability to express themselves in words. Walsh emphasises that learning difficulties of this sort often stem from emotional problems and can only be overcome by establishing warm teacher-pupil relationships based on trust and mutual acceptance and fostered by the spoken language.
The book is based around the teacher’s diary which Bernadette Walsh kept as a daily record of her work in the classroom. This vivid and immediate account lends weight to her argument that only an arts-based curriculum involving poetry, story, drama, dance, art, and – above all – talk, can help the development of children with special educational needs. Student teachers will find this text a compelling and realistic introduction to a challenging area of their future profession.