Starting from the Child

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December 1, 2007


Paperback, 240 pages


0335223842 / 9780335223848


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Main description

  • How can early years practitioners build on children’s competence and autonomy as effective early learners?
  • How do adults get to know children sufficiently well to plan effectively for their learning needs?
  • How can early years practitioners plan for high quality child-initiated experiences alongside more focused adult-initiated learning?
Early years practitioners continue to face the dilemma of planning for the needs of individual children whilst meeting the demands of targets and goals set by government. In such a pressurized climate, it can be all too easy to go with what is imposed, rather than stand up for what young children need and are entitled to.

In a practical and realistic way, the third edition of Starting from the Child supports practitioners in the Foundation Stage to be advocates for young children and their learning needs. Julie Fisher outlines the important theories and research which should underpin decisions about best practice. She offers meaningful and inspirational ways of developing appropriate learning environments and experiences for Foundation Stage children.

Revised and updated throughout, the new edition includes:

  • Latest research impacting on our understanding of early learning
  • Reference to recent government initiatives such as the Early Years Foundation Stage
  • An extended explanation of how to plan for child-initiated learning alongside adult-initiated learning
  • A completely revised chapter on ‘The place of play’, with a new focus on different types and contexts for play, cultural influences and the role of the adult in supporting play
  • Two new chapters on the observation and assessment of children’s learning, and self-evaluation for practitioners
Starting from the Child is essential reading, not only for early years practitioners, but for all those who manage and make decisions about early learning.

Table of contents

List of boxes and figures
Preface to the Third Edition

1. Competent young learners:
What children know and can do

2. Conversations and observations:
Learning about individual children

3. Planning for learning:
Decisions about appropriate experiences to support and extend learning

4. The role of the adult:
Making the best use of teaching time

5. Encouraging independence:
Environments that develop children’s learning autonomy

6. Collaboration and cooperation:
The importance of talking and learning with others

7. The place of play:
The status of child-initiated experiences

8. The negotiated learning environment:
Issues of ownership, power and control

9. The assessment of children’s learning:
What practitioners need to know about their children and their achievements

10. Reflection and evaluation:
What practitioners need to know about their practice, their provision and themselves


Author comments

Julie Fisher is an Independent Early Years Adviser

Copyright 2013 McGraw-Hill Global Education Holdings, LLC


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