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Discovering the Culture of Childhood

Discovering the Culture of Childhood

Author: Emily Plank   Foreword by: Carol Garhart Mooney
Product Code: 544625
ISBN: 978-1-60554-462-5
Publisher: Redleaf Press®
$24.95 Qty: 

Published by Redleaf Press Free sample chapter

Understand early childhood as a unique culture

We often filter our interactions with children through the lens of adulthood. 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, the power of believing, artistic expressions, and social structure. Filled with research and stories from around the world, this book offers a multitude of different perspectives to relate to. Understanding children’s dispositions of questioning, wonder, engagement, and cooperation from the inside changes everything.

Age focus: 0–8. Softbound, 200 pgs.

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by Shirley Rempel
on 9/17/2016
As an early childhood educator for the last 18 years I have read a LOT of books that contributed to my teaching philosophy and methods. However, there has only been a handful that I can say have truly created me to be the teacher I am. After reading Emily Plank's book, Discovering The Culture of Childhood, I am very happy to say I will be adding this book to that list of influential books! 

This book NEEDS to be on the required reading for all ECE programs around the world. Seriously it will influence and impact all who read it. It gives practical ideas of how to look at culture through the lens of the children we teach every day! A great book! 

I highly recommend this book and give it a huge thumbs up!
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Review: Education Shelf, California Bookwatch, Midwest Book Review - August 14, 2016
Discovering the Culture of Childhood is a top recommendation for early childhood educators and considers childhood culture, from belief systems to language and expressions as well as social interactions, and how it leads to better insights for the educator. The approach here involves examining this culture of childhood and understanding its perspective, using case history examples to demonstrate how problem solving opportunities were identified and fostered in early learning settings. As important as discussions of what worked are illustrations of what approaches failed due to misreading childhood communications and culture.
Review by: Gaye Gronlund - April 7, 2016
Emily Plank is truly an advocate for young children! In this marvelous book, she invites any adult who cares about children to consider a transformative view of childhood shifting from thinking about children’s developmental journey as one filled with deficits that must be overcome to seeing the incredible competency of children in each and every stage of their childhood, seeing children as “active members of their own vibrant culture.”
The book is filled with meaningful stories that help adults recognize the language of play so they can more fully engage with and support children in play, celebrate children’s rich imaginary belief systems rooted in fantasy and make-believe, and explore the curiosity-driven arts and culture of children with a focus on process and child-centered creativity.
Throughout she gives ideas to remind us that each child matters, is valuable, and has a meaningful place in the community. She encourages early childhood professionals to become allies of young children “who will advocate for the rights of children to experience life as children rather than as deficient adults.”
Review by: Heather Shumaker, It's OK NOT to Share - April 7, 2016
"No mini-adults here. This book is your passport to new understanding of children and their most baffling behaviors. Emily Plank opens our eyes to see we are everyday travelers in a distinct and foreign land: the culture of childhood."
Review by: Jenna Bilmes - April 7, 2016
Emily Plank has gifted us with a fascinating lens to the wondrous culture of childhood where time is not measured by productivity and where personal connections are valued above all else. The more we understand the culture of children, says Plank, the more effective and respectful we can be in our practices. Regardless of how long you have been working with young children, you’ll experience many “aha” moments that will stay with you long after you have put this book down.
Review by: Peter Gray, Research Professor at Boston College - March 24, 2016
When we visit another land we can view the natives’ differences from us as deficiencies, to be judged, or as fascinations, to be understood. Only the latter can lead to real communication. The same is true in our relationships with little children. In this brilliant book, Emily Plank helps us learn to appreciate children for who they are, fully formed children not unformed adults, and thereby overcome our tendency to try always to make them more like us. They will, on their own, become more like us in due time, as they grow naturally into the adult culture.

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