The Importance of Being Little: What Preschoolers Really Need from Grownups
"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."
"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."
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.
What people are saying - Write a review
The Importance of Being Little: What Preschoolers Really Need from GrownupsUser Review - Book Verdict
Christakis (education, Child Study Ctr., Yale Univ.) delves into the current state of early childhood education and offers a vision for developmentally appropriate and supportive classrooms. Focusing ... Read full review
The Importance of Being Little: What Preschoolers Really Need from GrownupsUser Review - Publishers Weekly
Christakis brings her experience working as a preschool teacher and with the Yale Child Study Center to this sophisticated, observation-based argument for viewing young children primarily as just that ... Read full review