I don't like Make, but I'm resigned to teaching it: other tools have different, rather than lesser, flaws. I've posted slides for the first four episodes of the lecture about it, and hope to have scripts and screencasts up soon. I'd welcome feedback—in particular, if anyone knows a clean solution to the problem at the end of the fourth episode (getting summary data to depend on stats.py), please let me know.
Later: scripts for these four episodes have been added; screencasts should go up next week. And for those who are wondering, the fifth and sixth episodes will cover macros, and how to use Make with Subversion to track the provenance of created files.