Anti-Bias Education for Young Children and Ourselves
Anti-Bias Education for Young Children and Ourselves, by Louise Derman-Sparks and Julie Olsen Edwards, provides practical guidance to confronting and eliminating barriers of prejudice, misinformation, and bias. Most importantly, the book includes tips for helping staff and children respect each other, themselves and all people. Individual chapters focus on culture and language, racial identity, gender identity, economic class, family structures,different abilities, holidays, and more.
NAEYC has compiled some key information from the book and related resources and self-reflective exercises for teachers as you think about anti-bias in your everyday work as educators.
Early childhood educators have deep faith in the principle that all people deserve the opportunities and resources to fulfill their complete humanity. Moreover, we have a unique role in making this principle real, in promoting all children’s chances to thrive and to succeed in school, in work, and in life. A basic principle in early childhood work is that when educators treat children as if they are strong, intelligent, and kind, children are far more likely to behave in strong, intelligent, kind ways. They are more likely to learn and thrive and succeed.
Louise Derman-Sparks, MA, worked for more than 50 years as a preschool teacher, child care center director, college teacher, author, consultant, and social justice activist. She began as an early childhood educator in the Ypsilanti Perry Preschool Project, directed a cooperative child care center, and was a professor at Pacific Oaks College for 32 years. Louise gave conference keynotes, conducted workshops, and consulted widely on anti-bias education with children and adults throughout the United States and internationally. Her published work includes several books and numerous articles. A member of the NAEYC Governing Board (1997–2001), Louise received the McCormick Center for Early Childhood Leadership’s Visionary Leader award in 2012. Now retired from teaching, she is active with the Social Justice Committee of the Pasadena Jewish Temple and Center. Louise is also the mother of two professionals in the human service field, Douglass and Sean.
Julie Olsen Edwards began her early childhood education career as a family child care home provider and fell in love with young children and their amazing capacity to learn and create. Over the years she taught in public and private programs with infants through 8-year-olds, always working closely with families. She was the founding director of the Cabrillo College Children’s Center and served as faculty and department chair during her 40 years at the college. She was a key organizer of the faculty union, insisting on the inclusion of the Children’s Center teachers. A lifetime activist for children and families, Julie is currently a consultant to the Early Childhood Education Department at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. She continues to write, teach, and consult on issues of equity, diversity, and anti-bias; emerging literacy; and family life and empowerment. She served on the NAEYC Governing Board from 2003 to 2007.