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  1. #1
    Shy
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    Book recommendations?

    I was wondering if anyone had any books that they could recommend that help in planning daycare activities (crafts, games etc) or child development or anything like that? I have the books Ages & Stages and What to Do With Toddlers and Twos which i find helpful. Are there any others you would recommend that help you in your daycare?

  2. #2
    Euphoric ! Inspired by Reggio's Avatar
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    These are a few of my favorite books most of which I enjoyed so much I know own a copy ... however I do not offer a traditional 'theme' based program so am inspired more by books on emergent curriculum, authentic assessment of children and inspiring 'creativity' verses doing 'crafts' and so forth so they might not be everyone's cup of tea.
    • Designs for Living and Learning by Deb Curtis and Margie Carter. Amazing book, gives lots of photos and ideas for setting your environment in natural and beautifully inspiring ways. Who wouldn't want to come in and explore if their environments looked like this!
    • The Project Approach Book One and Two by Silvia Chard. Silvias books are and easy read, give lots of examples and for people new to project work they are a great stepping stone into understanding and getting started.
    • In the Spirit of the Studio by Lella Gandini. This book is awesome for anyone who is nervous about creating a 'studio' for children or stepping out of the everyday 'crafts' into more creative expressionism and helping to cultivate not only your own but children's creative souls!
    • Beautiful Stuff! Learning with found materials by Cathy Weisman Topal and Lella Gandini. Great resources for people who need help brainstorming open ended material ideas as well as avenues towards free materials.
    • The Lively Kindergarten – Emergent Curriculum in Action by Elizabeth Jones, Kathleen Evans and Kay Strtizel Rencken
    • Repunzel’s Supermarket: all about children and their art by Ursela Kolb. You will never look at children's drawings the same way again!
    • To be an Artist by Maya Ajmera and John Ivanko spoke to offering children real mediums to explore their creative nature. It encouraged me to try new things with the children in our art program.
    • Everything has a Shadow – except Ants by Reggio Children a story of explorations children had about shadows I used to inspire provocations with children about their own understanding of shadows.
    • Children, spaces, relations: mega project for an environment for young children by Reggio Children Domus Academy Research Centre was an interesting read about planning spaces for children which focus of the use of light, reflection, shadow and beauty to inspire children and educators.
    • Advisories by Reggio Children was an interesting book that really talked about the role children can play in sharing the culture and their experiences with their younger peers.
    • Poking, Pinching & Pretending Documenting Toddlers Explorations with Clay by Deb Smith and Jeanne Goldhaber really helped me to understand the properties of clay a medium that I was unfamiliar with but wanted to offer my children.
    • The Portfolio Book – A step by step guide for teachers by Elizabeth F shores and Cathy Grace was very helpful in inspiring me to tweak and organize my own portfolio of work that I had started with the children’s authentic assessments. It also made me think about the value of keeping such a portfolio for myself not only for my own professional development but also for use in mentoring and career advancement through sharing it with others.
    • Reflecting Children’s Lives: A Handbook on Planning Child Centered Curriculum by Deb Curtis and Margie Carter was an awesome interactive book that I was able to use in my program, reflect back on through my reading and tweak my practices and perceptions.
    • The Art of Awareness: How Observation can Transform Your Teaching by Deb Curtis and Margie Carter further enhanced my observational skills to use more then just my eyes but tape recordings and photography as well
    • Authentic Childhood – Exploring Reggio Emilia in the Classroom by Susan Fraser and Carol Gestwicki provided me with further understanding of the constructivist theory and its foundation in emergent curriculum practices as well as how to recognize through close observation and promote these skills through provocations in our work with children.
    • It’s Not a Bird Yet – the Drama of Drawing by Ursula Kolbe further ideas and work with children on the use of drawings and our work with children.
    • Teach Your Child to Think by Edward de Bono was an interesting, although sometimes a little dry, book about how to engage children in provocations that really teach them how to be creative thinkers, learners and problems solvers.
    • Bambini – The Italian Approach to Infant/Toddler Care by Lella Gandini and Carolyn Pope Edwards was another interesting read on the emergent curriculum approach with a focus on younger children, the role of observation, documentation and authentic portfolio assessment to tell children’s journey as they travel through the school – it was an intriguing take on other principles I had already read about in previous Gandini books.
    • Developmentally Appropriate Practice in Early Childhood Programs – revised edition by NAEYC is a resource I bought form myself at a recent conference to use consistently as a reference guide to my practices with young children in my programs.
    • Building Support for Your School – How to use children’s work to show learning by Judy Harris Helm and Amanda Helm is a book I bought to help me further improve my documentation practices bringing them to an even more professional practice that I could use to showcase the important work being done in our programs – a way to further advocate for the field.
    Children construct their own intelligence. The adult must provide activities and context, but most of all must be able to listen. Children need proof that adults believe in them. Their three great desires are to be listened to, to understand, and to demonstrate that they are exactly what we expect."
    Loris Malaguzzi

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  4. #3
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    I'm a Little Teapot! Presenting Preschool Storytime by Jane Cobb is a great book to have. It is very simple, easy to understand/follow, covers a LOT of different categories and can be used for all ages, not just preschool which is in the title!
    "If we all could see the world through the eyes of a child, we would see the magic in everything!" - Chee Vai Tang

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  6. #4
    Euphoric !
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    Tray, it doesn't all have to come from books. Use your intuition, common sense and experience with children and listen to your gut too. I'm sure you are an intelligent, caring, nurturing person who will do a wonderful job. Just my two cents. It all falls into place in time with practice and a few years of learning the ins and outs of how to rearrange your space and what works and doesn't work with different age groups.
    Frederick Douglass
    It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.

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  8. #5
    Shy
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    That is quite the list, inspired by reggio! I will haveto check those out!

  9. #6
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    I acually have that book, Litttlefeet, and I likeit too!

  10. #7
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    Thanks for your kind comments, momof4,i have to admit i am a little nervous about expanding my daycare. I have to keep the kids happy and make sure the parents are happy with what I am doing too, so i am just looking for ideas.

  11. #8
    Euphoric !
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    Quote Originally Posted by tray View Post
    Thanks for your kind comments, momof4,i have to admit i am a little nervous about expanding my daycare. I have to keep the kids happy and make sure the parents are happy with what I am doing too, so i am just looking for ideas.
    By researching you are proving that you are a dedicated professional. But I come up with my weekly or biweekly themes on my own and then google for craft, song & game ideas weekly and get books at the library every week. It isn't rocket science but I put myself in the category of 'teacher' and know that I'm planting seeds of knowledge in the children's minds with lots of different subjects.

    Today we talked about snow and I brought a bowlful in the house and let the children play with it on trays after lunch, then I made a tiny snowman and told the children we would see what happened to it after naptime. I asked lots of questions about how it felt, what it looked like, the colour, things like that. In this simple way I taught the children about the science of snow.

    Next week we are talking about dinosaurs. I will set up lots of toy dinosaurs, read the books, sing some dinosaur marching songs, play roaring and stomping games, and take some of my old playdo and put the children's handprints and some toy dinosaur prints in it, bake it, they will paint it and we will have fossils. You see? This is all from looking around online and using my own imagination to keep myself interested as well as the children. That's my point.
    Frederick Douglass
    It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.

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