Books

Class Meetings: Young Children Solving Problems Together (Rev. ed.)

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Written by a teacher for teachers, this practical book offers teachers everything they need to know about what class meetings are, how to get started, and how to adapt the approach to their changing classrooms.  

The focus in this book is on using this part of the classroom day for resolving conflicts, co-constructing problem-solving strategies, and making the classroom a safe, positive environment so that children in preschools, kindergartens, and the primary grades can channel their energy into constructive interactions and learning. The experiences children have in class meetings can help them use problem-solving strategies outside the meetings, enabling them to depend less on adult intervention and use positive language with each other—important stepping-stones on the path to healthy self-esteem and respect for others. 

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Still Teaching in the Key of Life: Joyful Stories From Early Childhood Settings

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Early childhood educators face many challenges and stresses today. This heartwarming collection of 20 stories by Mimi Brodsky Chenfeld will help you remember why you became a teacher and why what you do every day is so important in the lives of young children. Read about classrooms filled with joy, laughter, love, and a celebration of learning. Copublished with Redleaf Press.

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ABC and Beyond: Building Emergent Literacy in Early Childhood Settings

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This guidebook brings to life the most current research on promoting children’s emergent literacy in early childhood classrooms. With the goal of preparing preschool children to learn to read and write successfully, ABC and Beyond shows educators how they can build language and literacy learning naturally into everyday conversations and activities. By translating the most current research into user-friendly strategies for educators, ABC and Beyond addresses the various prerequisites of literacy, including vocabulary, story comprehension, decontextualized (abstract) language, print knowledge, and phonological awareness. More than 120 color photographs and many easy-to follow charts with detailed, practical examples beautifully illustrate how the strategies are applied in real-life contexts. From Hanen Centre. 

Theories of Childhood: An Introduction to Dewey, Montessori, Erikson, Piaget, & Vygotsky (2nd ed.)

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This resource provides clear, straightforward introductions to the foundational theories of John Dewey, Maria Montessori, Erik Erikson, Jean Piaget, and Lev Vygotsky. Each chapter highlights a theorist's work and includes insight on how the theory impacts teaching young children today. Discussion questions and suggested readings are included to help you gain an understanding of what it means to apply each theory to your work with children.

  • Builds the bridge between theory and best practices in early childhood education
  • Supports your genuine enjoyment with children by helping you understand more about the ways they grow and learn
  • Includes new understandings of Vygotsky's work
  • Applies the five theories to the realities of the twenty-first century

From Redleaf Press. 

Reflecting in Communities of Practice: A Workbook for Early Childhood Educators

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Teaching young children is complex work. While you manage the day-to-day events that unfold in your classroom you also have to keep up with the demands of assessment and documentation. With all these challenges, how can you maintain the equally important tasks of encouraging children's curiosity and supporting their joy of learning? How can you sustain your own curious mind and joyful spirit in your work? Reflecting with other teachers in a community of practice can strengthen your abilities to respond to the children in your classroom and share meaningful experiences with them. 

This workbook is designed to be used with a group—a community of practice—but it can also be a self-study tool. The exercises help you to understand and practice the key elements of reflective teaching. Ten study sessions provide opportunities to engage with peers as you collaborate and connect theory and best practices in your classrooms. From Redleaf Press. 

Healthy Children, Healthy Lives: The Wellness Guide for Early Childhood Programs

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Early childhood is a critical time in human development. Understanding and supporting children's wellness early on can make the greatest impact on physical, social and emotional, and cognitive health throughout childhood and adulthood. This book provides a comprehensive collection of checklists and research-based information to help you evaluate and improve wellness in your program, making it a safe, happy place for each person—child and adult—who passes through the doors. 

The checklists cover six areas of wellness:

  • Nutrition and healthy eating habits
  • Physical activity and fitness
  • Emotional health and resilience
  • Physical health
  • Safety and risk management
  • Leadership

The completed checklists can be used to create an action plan to improve your program's approach to wellness. From Redleaf Press. 

Starting With Science: Strategies for Introducing Young Children to Inquiry

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Young children arrive at school with unrestrained curiosity and wonder about the world. In Starting With Science: Strategies for Introducing Young Children to Inquiry, the author explores the big ideas surrounding inquiry-based science. It provides practical suggestions and models for beginning teachers as well as those who are fine-tuning their practice. Four key questions underlie the book:

  • What is inquiry-based science?
  • How can pre-K, kindergarten, and primary-grade teachers incorporate inquiry-based science when faced with limited science background, insufficient time, and lack of resources?
  • What roles do the children, the teacher, and the environment play in an inquiry-based science program?
  • What instructional strategies are effective in implementing inquiry-based science?

In answering these questions, Edson provides a framework from which teachers can devise their own in-depth inquiry investigations based on district requirements and students' own interests. She also integrates literacy opportunities as well as explicit suggestions for effective assessment of inquiry-based science. From Stenhouse. 

The Power of Emergent Curriculum: Stories From Early Childhood Settings

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This remarkable collection of stories from early childhood settings illustrates what is possible when using an emergent curriculum approach. The stories tackle unusual topics, such as assessing the need for program rules, addressing the impact of a hurricane on classroom design, observing the empathy of toddlers, exploring children’s ideas about sculpture, and appreciating a long-term, multiage project in an after-school program. Overall, what readers witness is a rise in the quality of practice that results when responding to emerging topics. This book was a Comprehensive Member benefit.

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Spotlight on Young Children and Families

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Family involvement is critical to the success of young children in early learning environments and beyond. Educators must strive to acknowledge and value the many differences of each family. Educators must strive to acknowledge and value the many differences of each family.  

In this collection of articles from Young Children and Beyond the Journal, the authors address topics such as sharing the care of infants and toddlers, acknowledging culture and promoting inclusion, conferencing with families, and helping to support learning at home. A list of key resources as well as questions and activities designed to aid readers in reflecting on the articles are included. 

Basics of Developmentally Appropriate Practice Set (Book & DVD)

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Developmentally appropriate practice is so fundamental to the early childhood field that all new educators need a sound grasp from the very start. While DAP’s basic concepts aren’t difficult or arcane, they can be understood wrongly or incompletely—and often are! This engaging set (Basics of DAP book and Looking at the Basics of DAP DVD) describes the core concepts and makes them meaningful to everyday practice.

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