Academic journal article Childhood Education

The Classroom All Young Children Need: Lessons in Teaching from Vivian Paley

Academic journal article Childhood Education

The Classroom All Young Children Need: Lessons in Teaching from Vivian Paley

Article excerpt

THE CLASSROOM ALL YOUNG CHILDREN NEED: Lessons in Teaching From Vivian Paley. Patricia M. Cooper. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 2011. 235 pp. Paperback, $20.00. This book offers teachers insight into Paley's thinking and teaching philosophy. Cooper's purpose in writing this book was to present a synoptic vision of Paley's contribution to early childhood education as a teacher educator. While Vivian Paley is a friend and mentor to Cooper and has been aware of this book since its inception, the author did not seek Paley's input on the book and thereby maintained purpose and integrity. Cooper provides Paley's teaching philosophy and insights into literacy, play, storytelling, pedagogy, and democratic values, successfully focusing on Paley's work and the pedagogical model presented in her writings. Her assumption is that Paley is an expert, model teacher who provides road signs within the classroom that offer teachers inspiration and practical knowledge.

The book is divided into two parts. Part One, "Curricular Matters: A Pedagogy of Meaning," focuses on early literacy, play, teaching philosophy, fantasy play, young children's search for meaning, storytelling, and story acting. …

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