Thursday, September 19, 2013

Magic Capes, Amazing Powers: A Blog Review

About The Book:

Heroes, villains, and saving the day!
For as long as there have been heroes and villains in our books, on our TVs, and in our everyday lives, children have been imitating them. Superhero play remains a wonderful, developmentally appropriate way for children to explore power, experience adventure, and investigate big questions about the world. At the same time, many adults are understandably troubled by the effect of media storylines, stereotypes, and violence on children's superhero play.

Magic Capes, Amazing Powers takes an in-depth look at why children are so strongly attracted to superhero and weapons play, examines the concerns of parents and teachers, and suggests practical solutions that take into account the needs of children and adults. It explores superhero play in a positive direction through the use of redirection, storytelling, dramatic play materials, anti-bias curriculum, and clear limit setting. This unique resource addresses adults' concerns and allow children to do what they do best—play!

You can read an excerpt of this book here, in PDF format

About The Author:

Eric Hoffman has served on the governing board of the California Association for the Education of Young Children, and he is currently master teacher in the laboratory preschool at Cabrillo College in Aptos, California.

My Review:

After having worked in the field of early childhood education for 15 years, I have seen my share of different children's personalities, different manners of play and different ways to deal with these personalities and play. Often most of the time there are really straight forward answers to deal with issues that come up in the education of young children. However, one area that often stumps even the most veteran of early childhood educational professionals is that of superhero or rough/tumble play. I cannot tell you how many times I had previously told children, no fighting play, no weapons, etc. however, in the last few years, after reading and listening to some very wise authors and teachers, I have come to realize the benefit to this style of play.

Recently i had the opportunity to review the book, Magic Capes, Amazing Powers and my eyes were opened once again to this very important topic.

Children imitating their favorite shows, and characters is nothing new, its been around since I was a child, and even since my parent's were children. But the way that we deal with it and encourage or discourage children has changed hugely. And that is what author Eric Hoffman has most effectively done in this book.

Throughout the first part of the book, Hoffman reviews what super hero play looks like to both the child and adult, but then he dissects this effective method of play and shows adults why it is so important. I especially LOVED the last half of the book, especially because it walked me through ways to enhance the play and allow children to use their imagination, gross motor skills, social skills and more to add to their dramatic play time. Instead of fearing super hero and rough/tumble play, let's embrace it and allow it to teach our children!

This is a must read for all early childhood education professionals, perfect for professional development resources, and a must have in your professional library. 

I highly recommend this book and give it a huge thumbs up!

BUY IT: You can purchase Magic Capes, Amazing Powers online through RedLeaf Press

***I received a complimentary copy of this book, 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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