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DOUBLE TAP TO ZOOM WITH PHONE OR TABLET Dear Reader, This book and its companion reflect a renewed interest in play and how very important it is in the healthy development of children. In this new world of technology, play continues to be the most powerful force for learn- ing in a young child’s life. And our job as people who teach young children is to provide the best environment for play to happen. The first book, When Play Isn’t Fun: Helping Children Resolve Play Conflicts, focuses on setting up your environment, schedule, and curriculum for play and highlights several group-play challenges and how to address them. This book, When Play Isn’t Easy: Helping Children Enter and Sustain Play, offers a detailed look at the Play Checklist introduced in our book Play: The Pathway from Theory to Practice, plus an exploration of how play connects to early learning stan- dards. The books build on information from Play and can be an additional resource to it. The books move from designing your learning environment to maximize play, to helping groups of children resolve barriers to more productive play, to helping individual children learn better play skills. The books could be used on your own, with your teaching team, or by your organization. They could be the basis of workshops. As we began these books, we decided to ask friends and family about their experiences with play. Their memories are touching, funny, and poignant. Many of their quotes are included in the books. Those of us who care for children have many possible roles: teacher, assis- tant teacher, aide, family child care provider, specialist, and others. We all interact with children as they play. We have chosen to use the term teacher when referring to all adults working in our field. We are all teachers in each of our roles. The suggestions are valuable whatever your title. We have used the term learning environment to refer to the variety of set- tings we see in early childhood. We hope these books help you to remember your own play experiences and use those memories to strengthen the play experiences for the children in your care. As you increase your intentionality with regard to play in your learning environment, children will show you their delight in new and fas- cinating ways. Sandy & Debbie COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL