4.1 Introduction

Some projects, especially large-scale ones, will rely on a team, not just an individual, for their successful implementation. Unlike permanent work teams, a project team's objective is the achievement of a finite and specific task – the project. Its performance, especially its ability to perform effectively as a group, is therefore critical to a project's outcome. However, it may prove relatively difficult for a project team to work well together at the outset, since its members are often d
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References

Porter, M. E. (1990) The Competitive Advantage of Nations, New York, The Free Press.
Postman, N. (1998) ‘New technology keeps whizzing into our lives’, The Guardian, 5 December (The Editor, pp. 12–13).

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1.1 Introduction

Recent findings show that volunteers report higher ratings on the measures of life satisfaction, happiness, and feeling that the things they do in life are worthwhile. Last year the number of people volunteering at least once a month rose to 29%, which may be thanks in part to the high profile volunteering received
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Acknowledgements

The content acknowledged below is Proprietary (see terms and conditions) and is used under licence.

Grateful acknowledgement is made to the following sources for permission to reproduce material in this course:

Course image: MPD01605 in Flickr made available under
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1.12.2 Constructing discursive spaces

Finally, the notion of discursive space draws attention to the broader social practices which construct such spaces. Thus social scientists and discourse researchers have been interested in the practices of production of newspapers and the media and in the ways in which economic and technological developments construct discursive spaces. E-mail, the internet and computer-mediated communication are good examples of how changing practices produce new spaces which construct new kinds of discursi
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1.3.1 Discourse is constitutive

First we'll focus on Diana's utterances as a form of description. She is describing some events in the world and people's reactions to those. Social scientists deal with descriptions of this kind all the time. They are basic data. But what do we do with them? One way to respond is to move to judgements about adequacy and accuracy. Is this objective data? Is Diana telling it how it was? Would we want other sources of information about what really happened? Social science is made up of these ki
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2.2.2 Reading graphs and charts: manipulating numbers

Text is just one way of communicating information. Numbers are another way, but whether presented singly, in groups or even as tables , numbers often require a lot of work from the reader to uncover the message. A much more immediate and powerful way to present numerical information is to use graphs and charts. When you use single numbers or tables, the reader has to visualise the meaning of the numbers. Graphs and charts allow the reader to do this at a glance. To show how powerful these rep
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3.3 Maps and the modern world

Maps play a fundamental role in the functioning of modern Western societies. They are important as legal documents in both the public and private spheres: your proof of the boundaries of your property as well as the location of international borders. Maps are important in military campaigns, territorial disputes, explorations for mineral resources. Maps may be a source of conflict and competing claims to land and water. In some cases the conflicts are also cross-cultural. Western-style corpor
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1.7.1 Differentiating dyslexia from other reading difficulties

The idea that dyslexia is distinctive from other forms of reading difficulty is still debated. One viewpoint is that reading ability is a simple continuum, with exceptionally gifted readers at one end and people with dyslexia at the other. However, as we have already seen, dyslexia involves more than just difficulties in reading and writing. Reading difficulties must be specific and accompanied by a variable profile of cognitive abilities. It is the presence of other characteristics unrelated
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1. A powerful force for perception and understanding

‘Imagery is a powerful force for perception and understanding. Being able to “see” something mentally is a common metaphor for understanding it. An image may be of some geometrical shape, or of a graph or diagram, or it may be some set of symbols or some procedure.’

(Open University, 1988, p. 10)

This course uses the word visualisation synonymously with mental imagery. It happens as
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3 Lesson delivery

The way in which we deliver our lessons will have an impact on the students' interest and engagement in the work. If we appear enthused and excited by the subject that we are studying, then at least some of this enthusiasm will inevitably rub off on our class.

The successful teacher will deliver his or her lessons with a sense of:

  • Pace: keeping the class and the learning moving forwards.

  • Clarity: knowing where the les
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4.1 Thinking about constraints within your setting

Activity 6

0 hours 40 minutes

The objectives of this activity are:

  • to identify constraints within your setting;


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3.2 Using a framework to think about communication between yourself and other professionals

Activity 5

0 hours 40 minutes

The objective of this activity is:

  • to use a variety of ‘tools’ to help you examine your prac
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1.2 Thinking about how you work with other professionals

Activity 1

0 hours 40 minutes

Think about other adults you interact with in your role as an early years practitioner. Draw a chart or diagrammatic representation showi
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4 Looking to the future

It would be a brave person who tries to predict the future in any area of work. However, in gathering resources for this course we have been in a position to obtain a good sense of how teaching assistants are currently working in primary schools across the UK. We are also in touch with a large number of assistants studying courses with The Open University and note how they write about their day-to-day work. This provides us with an idea of how the role is developing and also how it might poss
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