The Busker’s Guide to Inclusion (2nd Edition)


‘Inclusion? I don’t think we could cope!’
What is inclusion? What isn’t inclusion?
Why is inclusion important for all children?
And how do we go about making it happen?

The Busker’s Guide to Inclusion (2nd Edition) has recently been updated with new thinking and additional guidance based on current UK legislation and also includes a new resources list.  


Category: Product ID: 467


The Buskers Guide to Inclusion  explores what inclusion really means in a lively and down-to-earth way. It begins with some of the pitfalls to be avoided and identifies some important principles for good practice.

It clearly demonstrates how these principles are equally applicable to working with every child, and how we can shift from seeing some children as ‘special’ to developing settings in which all children feel they truly belong.

The first edition of The Busker’s Guide to Inclusion has been reprinted five times and sold over 15,000 copies all over the world!

Additional information

Weight100 g

8 reviews for The Busker’s Guide to Inclusion (2nd Edition)

  1. Shelly Newstead

    ‘Inclusion is just good practice’. So states Philip Douch in the introduction to his new edition of the succinct, accessible and eminently actionable Busker’s Guide to Inclusion.

    He asserts the ‘ordinariness’ of inclusion, an angle which immediately suggests that Douch walks the walk. Using vibrant and inclusive language throughout, Douch artfully weaves the theoretical (Equality Act 2010) and the delivery level to arm the practitioner to go from nought-to-inclusion in 5 chapters. The temptation here would no doubt have been to go into the policy framework in more detail, risking disengagement of the reader and the guide’s practicability therefore would have been somewhat compromised. Instead, Douch manages to uncover some take-home jewels through the guide which, while stimulating further enquiry, allow the reader to continue in the thought-process of practicability. For example, Douch asserts without labour that ‘Disabled children are disabled by social attitudes.’ A brief mention of the medical vs. social model, and then we are away again.

    In his introduction, Douch makes clear that: ‘…the core of the book remains much the same – as the principles of inclusion are unchanging and are just as important now as when I wrote the first edition’. As we enter a transformational period, I would go a step further; we have the opportunity to remould our attitudes, moving inclusion centre-stage in service design and become the new ordinary. This guide, with its reach and energy, is a big step toward that goal.

    Imran Mirza, Director of Children’s Service, The Parasol Project

  2. Shelly Newstead

    The Busker’s Guide to Inclusion is a gem of a book and should be essential reading for anyone working with children.
    Philip Douch covers the tricky issue of inclusion using the social model of disability, common sense and understandable language.
    Douch emphasises the importance of focusing on open invitations, ability and can do attitudes.
    He gives the reminder that disabled children are firstly children with their own wants and desires, they can and do play and will take risks.
    Read this book, it will make you a better person and a better practitioner!

    Becky Willans, PhD Disability Studies Candidate, University of Bristol

  3. Shelly Newstead

    This book guide is a warm hearted, no-nonsense guide to getting inclusion right. It’s not preachy or earnest, choosing instead to take a practical approach with useful insights and tips drawing on the author’s rich experience in this field. Inclusion is presented as it should be – good for everyone – and by the end of reading you’ll be ready and equipped to gently move any obstructions to inclusion to one side with the kind of unpretentious, ‘can-do’ approach that characterises this essential guide.

    Paul Hocker, Director, London Play

  4. Shelly Newstead

    The Busker’s Guide to Inclusion covers the basics of inclusion in a brief yet highly informative and relatable format. This book covers key components of inclusion that can support undergraduate students or professionals. The book emphasises the importance of a positive attitude, building relationships, going beyond reasonable adjustments and the practicalities of creating inclusive environments. The guide takes complex theoretical ideas and makes them accessible and enjoyable. I particularly enjoyed some of images and scenarios that reiterate key points. The book also comes from a position of empathy for the reader and the diverse needs of children which I believe will support the development of more positive environments for all children.

    Dr. Christina Hancock, School of Education and Social Work, University of Sussex

  5. Shelly Newstead

    This is a really useful and practical resource. It is great to see such commitment to inclusion. Philip Douch manages to keep our minds on the things that really matter when it comes to achieving good lives for all. Great to see the second edition of this fantastic little book!”

    Alice McColl, Development Lead, Children and Young People
    National Development Team for Inclusion (NDTi), UK

  6. Shelly Newstead

    “Why did Philip Douch have to write this book on inclusion? It’s just common sense. We do all these things anyway.” Oh for that day when inclusiveness will be the norm and people will find it strange that a book had to be written to encourage inclusiveness!

    While we are still on that journey, The Busker’s Guide to Inclusion acts as a lamp post. The book seamlessly views inclusion from multiple perspectives, including that of children with impairments, their caregivers, and the institutions that work with children. The array of topics discussed and the myriad practical suggestions presented with compassion give the reader a valuable insight into what makes a space truly inclusive. The non-patronising and non-preachy tone of the book goes a long way in putting the reader at ease and gently encouraging them to take their first steps into creating more inclusive spaces for children to live, learn and thrive. The use of analogies from everyday events such as visiting friends or going to a party helps familiarise an audience who may not be exposed to issues faced by children with impairments. The illustrations lend themselves well to illuminating the points discussed.

    Dr Naveen I. Thomas
    Co-founder, Headstreams (an NGO based in India promoting play in different settings)

  7. Shelly Newstead

    The Busker’s Guide to Inclusion conveys complex ideas about disability and inclusion in an accessible, humoristic and practical manner. This guide focuses on attitudes as the crucial condition for successful inclusion, reducing common fears stemming from lack of knowledge or experience. It shows very convincingly how anyone can create a respectful environment in which differences between people are perceived as an integral part of the ordinary daily being. While true inclusion responds to basic human rights of children with defined impairments, it also benefits all children and adults in the inclusive environment, a universalist perspective which is well exemplified in this book.

    In many countries world-wide children with all types of disabilities are increasingly offered the option to be educated in regular educational settings in their communities. These social and legal changes push educators to rethink about their existing settings. Busker’s guide responds to these challenges with an updated, deep and ground-to-earth perspective which relies on knowing the particular needs of the children involved. It is not only about adjusting existing options to all children, but also about opening a new variety of options from which all children can choose. As a researcher of social inclusion in primary schools in the Netherlands, and a deaf person myself, I couldn’t agree more. As inclusion becomes the norm, this book is a must for any person working with children.

    Adva Eichengreen (PhD), post-doctoral researcher, Department of Developmental Psychology, Leiden University, The Netherlands.

  8. Shelly Newstead

    This Busker Guide is so inspiring that it challenges our deep rooted belief, thoughts, attitude and practice towards disabled children. A new way to termed “disabled children” and a new definition. That is, they are or may be “children with impairments” but are “disabled by the rest of us and the world he lives in.” So this is us that become their barriers.
    The Busker Guide is also so down to earth that it provides very practical information like steps of inclusive play provision and grants that will cover the extra cost.
    And I can’t keep myself from yelling, “Yea, yea, …” in reading the part about children with complex impairment, it further reinforces myself that they deserve play as we keep on trial to make it possible to these children through our “Play N Able” project.
    Hope that one day care takers of children with impairment will no longer say, “We appreciate that it is such a safe and comfortable place for our children to play here as they are all children with special needs”. It should be “It is such a safe and comfortable place for different children with different needs to play here.” – real inclusive.

    Wong Pui Yi, Ada
    Manager (Training and Professional Development, Playright Children’s Play Association, Hong Kong

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