Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Infant and Toddler Experiences: A Book Review




What's the difference between a classroom activity and an experience? One you organize to pass the time, and the other you intend to last a lifetime. 

Help infants and toddlers figure out how the world works with meaningful experiences, organized by the three "Cs": curiosity, connection, and coordination. As the introduction says, "The special joy of caring for infants and toddlers is the chance to experience the world through their eyes." Softbound, 272 pgs.



This sequel to the popular Infant and Toddler Experiences contains more than 100 engaging experiences for infants and toddlers that reflect and celebrate each child's development. Fran Hast and Ann Hollyfield base their suggestions on current research and more than 20 years of teaching infants and toddlers. Softbound, 192 pgs. 

About The Authors:

 Ann Hollyfield teaches at the Palo Alto Infant-Toddler Center in Palo Alto, California. The center is part of Palo Alto Community Child Care, a private, nonprofit organization that provides funds and subsidies to 15 child care programs throughout the city. In her role as head teacher, Ms. Hollyfield hopes to share her belief in the joy of caring interactions with infants and toddlers. Ms. Hollyfield has a degree in elementary education from the Oregon College of Education.

Fran Hast teaches at the Palo Alto Infant-Toddler Center in Palo Alto, California. The center is part of Palo Alto Community Child Care, a private, nonprofit organization that provides funds and subsidies to 15 child care programs throughout the city. In her role as teaching director, Ms. Hast hopes to share her belief in the joy of caring interactions with infants and toddlers. Ms. Hast has a B.A. in psychology from Miami University in Ohio.

My Review:

Having my career in the field of Early Childhood Education, and working with hundreds of children over the years, one age group that I have not had a lot of experience with is infants and toddlers. Though I now I have my own children, and of course, experience our family journey through this age, I was lacking in a lot of resources for infant and toddler child care. In the last four years that I have ran my home child care program, I have had a number of infants/toddlers in my home. So on the hunt I went for resources. Sadly, they were lacking. Recently, though, I had the opportunity to review two fantastic books that have been a saving grace! I have had a little one in my home since Spring and the books have been used almost daily to help engage her in fun and educational activities.

In the first book, Infant and Toddler Experiences, you will first learn the foundations of educating children in this age group. Then you will find activities that foster curiosity, connections and coordination. Each activity is clearly marked so you know if it is for infant, toddler, or both. The activities all use everyday items and are easy to implement. Perfect for both home and child care environments. 

The second book carries on with a review of the foundations (10 of them), and then over a 100 new activities. 

With these two books in my personal library now, I have truly found that I have a well-rounded professional development collection that will be used for how ever many years I have left in the field, and are definitely two resources that I would recommend to those in Early Childhood Education, or parents. The activities don't use a lot of premade toys or items, its things like paper rolls, blankets, photos, balls, and more. Easy and simple, just like children of these ages need to be successful in their play and exploration. 

I highly recommend these books and give them a huge thumbs up!

BUY IT: You can purchase Infant and Toddler Experiences here, and More Infant and Toddler Experiences here, from Redleaf Press. You can also purchase them as a set, here.

***I received a complimentary copy of these books, courtesy of RedLeaf Press, for the purpose of review on this blog. All opinions expressed are my own, and I have not been compensated in any other manner***

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