In this bold challenge to the conventional wisdom about early childhood, Yale Early Childhood expert Erika Christakis offers a pragmatic program to encourage parents to rethink how and where young children learn best. Christakis argues that children are hardwired to learn in any setting, but when 'learning' is defined by strict lessons and dodgy metrics, it devalues a child's intelligence while placing unfit requirements on the developing brain. Her message is energising and encouraging: children are inherently powerful and will flourish if we can revitalise the early learning environment.
“Christakis . . . expertly weaves academic research, personal experience and anecdotal evidence into her book . . . a bracing and convincing case that early education has reached a point of crisis . . . her book is a rare thing: a serious work of research that also happens to be well-written and personal . . . engaging and important.” --Washington Post "What kids need from grown-ups (but aren't getting)...an impassioned plea for educators and parents to put down the worksheets and flash cards, ditch the tired craft projects (yes, you, Thanksgiving Handprint Turkey) and exotic vocabulary lessons, and double-down on one, simple word: play." --NPR.org The New York Times bestseller that provides a bold challenge to the conventional wisdom about early childhood, with a pragmatic program to encourage parents and teachers to rethink how and where young children learn best by taking the child’s eye view of the learning environment To a four-year-old watching bulldozers at a construction site or chasing butterflies in flight, the world is awash with promise. Little children come into the world hardwired to learn in virtually any setting and about any matter. Yet in today’s preschool and kindergarten classrooms, learning has been reduced to scripted lessons and suspect metrics that too often undervalue a child’s intelligence while overtaxing the child’s growing brain. These mismatched expectations wreak havoc on the family: parents fear that if they choose the “wrong” program, their child won’t get into the “right” college. But Yale early childhood expert Erika Christakis says our fears are wildly misplaced. Our anxiety about preparing and safeguarding our children’s future seems to have reached a fever pitch at a time when, ironically, science gives us more certainty than ever before that young children are exceptionally strong thinkers. In her pathbreaking book, Christakis explains what it’s like to be a young child in America today, in a world designed by and for adults, where we have confused schooling with learning. She offers real-life solutions to real-life issues, with nuance and direction that takes us far beyond the usual prescriptions for fewer tests, more play. She looks at children’s use of language, their artistic expressions, the way their imaginations grow, and how they build deep emotional bonds to stretch the boundaries of their small worlds. Rather than clutter their worlds with more and more stuff, sometimes the wisest course for us is to learn how to get out of their way. Christakis’s message is energizing and reassuring: young children are inherently powerful, and they (and their parents) will flourish when we learn new ways of restoring the vital early learning environment to one that is best suited to the littlest learners. This bold and pragmatic challenge to the conventional wisdom peels back the mystery of childhood, revealing a place that’s rich with possibility. From the Hardcover edition.
Parents of young children today are in crisis: pick the "wrong" preschool and your child won't get into the "right" college. Christakis believes we have confused schooling with learning: children are hardwired to learn in any setting, but they punch below their weight when "learning" is defined by strict lessons and dodgy metrics that devalue a child's intelligence. Here, she explores what it's like to be a young child in America today, in a world designed by and for adults.
Featuring compelling, detailed narratives, this is the first book to provide an eye-opening look at why pre-K matters for children and society, what it should look like and do, and what it takes to create good pre-K programs.
Author: Peg Tyre
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
Release Date: 2011-08-16
Award-winning education journalist Peg Tyre mines up-to-the-minute research to equip parents with the tools and knowledge necessary to get their children the best education possible We all know that the quality of education served up to our children in U.S. schools ranges from outstanding to shockingly inadequate. How can parents tell the difference? And how do they make sure their kids get what's best? Even the most involved and informed parents can feel overwhelmed and confused when making important decisions about their child's education. And the scary truth is that evaluating a school based on test scores and college admissions data is like selecting a car based on the color of its paint. Synthesizing cutting-edge research and firsthand reporting, Peg Tyre offers parents far smarter and more sophisticated ways to assess a classroom and decide if the school and the teacher have the right stuff. Passionate and persuasive, The Good School empowers parents to make sense of headlines; constructively engage teachers, administrators, and school boards; and figure out the best option for their child—be that a local public school, a magnet program, a charter school, homeschooling, parochial, or private.
Author: Marion S. Forgatch
Publisher: Conari Press
Release Date: 2017-05-01
Genre: Family & Relationships
What’s the recipe for a happy family? A spirit of cooperation. Instilling a spirit of cooperation in children is the real secret to providing the gift of a happy childhood, being a “good” parent, and building the family you’ve always wanted. In Raising Cooperative Kids, research psychologists Marion Forgatch and Gerald Patterson, one of the original developers of Time Out, provide parenting techniques that tap deep-rooted human instincts, making them universal and easy to use no matter where you live or how your family is structured. Developed over 40 years of practice and tested in clinical and prevention trials, these skills empower parents to teach their children new behaviors, change unwanted behaviors, and reduce family conflicts. Together, Forgatch, Patterson, and Friend give parents the formula to overcome family struggles and inspire children to cooperate—from toddlerhood into their teens. Specific guidance is included for issues ranging from how to share the bathroom during the morning rush to what to do when a child misbehaves. The authors also remind us of the importance of play—enjoying each other and sharing time and activities together is the cornerstone of a connected, happy family.
Understand the connection between how kids grow and how they learn After 35 years as an education consultant, Rae Pica knows the importance of understanding the natural course of child development. In this collection, she keeps kids front and center as she provides thought-provoking commentary and actionable insights on topics such as the Common Core, the self-esteem movement, and standardized testing. Sure to inspire discussion, this pocket-size powerhouse of educational philosophy includes 29 short essays on topics critical to best practice in child development and education Opinions of experts supported by research and anecdotal evidence Real-life stories shared by teachers and parents References to related articles and interviews with experts
In The Collapse of Parenting, physician, psychologist, and internationally acclaimed author Leonard Sax presents data documenting a dramatic decline in the achievement and psychological health of American children. Sax argues that rising levels of obesity, depression, and anxiety among young people—as well as the explosion in prescribing psychiatric medications to kids—can all be traced to parents letting their kids call the shots. Many parents are afraid of seeming too dictatorial and end up abdicating their authority rather than taking a stand with their own children. If kids refuse to eat anything green and demand pizza instead, some parents give in, inadvertently raising children who are more likely to become obese. If children are given smartphones and allowed to spend the bulk of their free time texting, playing video games, and surfing the Internet, they become increasingly reliant on peers and the media for guidance on how to live, rather than getting such guidance at home. And if they won't sit still in class or listen to adults, they're often prescribed medication, a quick fix that actually undermines their self-control. In short, Sax argues, parents are failing to prioritize the parent-child relationship and are allowing a child-peer dynamic to take precedence. The result is children who have no absolute standard of right and wrong, who lack discipline, and who look to their peers and the Internet for direction, instead of looking to their parents. But there is hope. Sax shows how parents can help their kids by reasserting their authority—by limiting time with screens, by encouraging better habits at the dinner table and at bedtime, and by teaching humility and perspective. Drawing on more than twenty-five years of experience as a family physician and psychologist, along with hundreds of interviews with children, parents, and teachers across the United States and around the world, Sax offers a blueprint parents can use to refresh and renew their relationships with their children to help their children thrive in an increasingly complicated world.
A clinical psychologist and a test-prep expert combine cutting-edge brain science with insights from their work with families to outline a case for giving children more freedom to unleash their full potential.
Author: Roberta M. Golinkoff
Publisher: American Psychological Association (APA)
Release Date: 2016-05-01
Genre: Child development
Today's children will forge careers that look nothing like those their parents and grandparents knew. Even the definitions of "career" and "job" are changing as people create new businesses and services. Although these changes are well underway, our education system in the U.S. lags behind and still subscribes to the idea that content is king. This exclusive focus on content is reflected in what we test, how we teach, and even the toys we offer our children. Employers want to hire excellent communicators, critical thinkers, and innovators-in short, they want brilliant people. So what can we do, as parents, to help our children be brilliant and successful? Golinkoff and Hirsh-Pasek provide a science-based framework for how we should be teaching children in and outside of school. Using fun and engaging examples, the authors introduce the 6Cs-collaboration, communication, content, critical thinking, creative innovation, and confidence-along with tips to optimize children's development in each area. These skills will make up the straight-A report card for success in the 21st century. Book jacket.
Author: David Elkind
Publisher: Da Capo Press
Release Date: 2009-02-23
With the first edition of The Hurried Child, David Elkind emerged as the voice of parenting reason, calling our attention to the crippling effects of hurrying our children through life. He showed that by blurring the boundaries of what is age appropriate, by expecting--or imposing--too much too soon, we force our kids to grow up too fast, to mimic adult sophistication while secretly yearning for innocence. In the more than two decades since this book first appeared, new generations of parents have inadvertently stepped up the assault on childhood, in the media, in schools, and at home. In the third edition of this classic (2001), Dr. Elkind provided a detailed, up-to-the-minute look at the Internet, classroom culture, school violence, movies, television, and a growing societal incivility to show parents and teachers where hurrying occurs and why. And as before, he offered parents and teachers insight, advice, and hope for encouraging healthy development while protecting the joy and freedom of childhood. In this twenty-fifth anniversary edition of the book, Dr. Elkind delivers important new commentary to put a quarter century of trends and change into perspective for parents today.
View the culture of childhood through a whole new lens. Identify age-based bias and expand your outlook on and understanding of early childhood as a culture. Examine various elements of childhood culture: language, belief economics, arts, and social structure to understand children's dispositions of questioning, engagement, and cooperation. Emily Plank specializes in play-based education, diversity and culture in early childhood education, and outdoor learning. In 2011, the Iowa Association for the Education of Young Children identified Emily as one of seven emerging leaders. She earned her bachelor's degree from Pepperdine University. She and her family currently reside in Lausanne, Switzerland.
Author: Angela J. Hanscom
Publisher: New Harbinger Publications
Release Date: 2016-04-22
Genre: Family & Relationships
In this important book, a pediatric occupational therapist and founder of TimberNook shows how outdoor play and unstructured freedom of movement are vital for children’s cognitive development and growth, and offers tons of fun, engaging ways to help ensure that kids grow into healthy, balanced, and resilient adults. Today’s kids have adopted sedentary lifestyles filled with television, video games, and computer screens. But more and more, studies show that children need “rough and tumble” outdoor play in order to develop their sensory, motor, and executive functions. Disturbingly, a lack of movement has been shown to lead to a number of health and cognitive difficulties, such as attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), emotion regulation and sensory processing issues, and aggressiveness at school recess break. So, how can you ensure your child is fully engaging their body, mind, and all of their senses? Using the same philosophy that lies at the heart of her popular TimberNook program—that nature is the ultimate sensory experience, and that psychological and physical health improves for children when they spend time outside on a regular basis—author Angela Hanscom offers several strategies to help your child thrive, even if you live in an urban environment. Today it is rare to find children rolling down hills, climbing trees, or spinning in circles just for fun. We’ve taken away merry-go-rounds, shortened the length of swings, and done away with teeter-totters to keep children safe. Children have fewer opportunities for unstructured outdoor play than ever before, and recess times at school are shrinking due to demanding educational environments. With this book, you’ll discover little things you can do anytime, anywhere to help your kids achieve the movement they need to be happy and healthy in mind, body, and spirit.
Author: Sara Zaske
Publisher: Picador USA
Release Date: 2018-01-02
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
An Entertaining, Enlightening Look at the Art of Raising Self-Reliant, Independent Children Based on One American Mom’s Experiences in Germany When Sara Zaske moved from Oregon to Berlin with her husband and toddler, she knew the transition would be challenging, especially when she became pregnant with her second child. She was surprised to discover that German parents give their children a great deal of freedom—much more than Americans. In Berlin, kids walk to school by themselves, ride the subway alone, cut food with sharp knives, and even play with fire. German parents did not share her fears, and their children were thriving. Was she doing the opposite of what she intended, which was toraise capable children? Why was parenting culture so different in the States? Through her own family’s often funny experiences as well as interviews with other parents, teachers, and experts, Zaske shares the many unexpected parenting lessons she learned from living in Germany. Achtung Baby reveals that today's Germans know something that American parents don't (or have perhaps forgotten) about raising kids with “selbstandigkeit” (self-reliance), and provides practical examples American parents can use to give their own children the freedom they need to grow into responsible, independent adults.