Building Blocks for Teaching Preschoolers with Special Needs / Edition 2

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Updated for today's educators—especially those new to inclusion—the second edition of this bestselling guide is the lifeline preschool teachers need to fully include children with disabilities in their classrooms.

Easy to use with any existing curriculum, including Creative Curriculum and HighScope, Building Blocks gives educators three types of practical, research-based inclusion strategies that promote progress in critical areas like behavior, emergent literacy, and peer relationships. A must for professional development, this revised edition helps teachers thrive in the era of accountability with NEW material that reflects the six years of changes in early education since the first edition. Teachers will

• discover how the Building Blocks approach aligns with OSEP outcomes to help teachers meet the federal requirements for special education

• learn everything they need to know about evidence-based practice and how to apply it in their classrooms

• print more than a dozen helpful forms—including classroom assessments, planning worksheets, and child evaluation forms—with the convenient NEW CD-ROM

Through clear and instructive vignettes woven throughout the book, teachers will also meet four young children from diverse backgrounds and learn from their teachers' examples of successful interventions. A perfect training tool for teachers and an ideal textbook for college and university courses, this revised bestseller will help today's preschool educators start all their students on the road to lasting school success.

Promote inclusion and improve child outcomesthrough:

curriculum modifications that allow all children to participate

embedded learning opportunities used in typical classroom activities

•child-focused instructional strategies that help students with individual learning objectives

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Editorial Reviews

Kathryn Hoover

"I prefer to use the Building Blocks text for inservice teachers coming back for the early childhood special education endorsement . . . The teachers appreciate the useful curriculum, materials, and environmental modifications chapter."
Associate Professor, Special Services and Leadership Studies, Pittsburg State University, Pittsburg, Kansas - Martha A. York
"An invaluable resource for students who are learning to be educators of young children . . . will assist them in providing differentiated instruction to young students with all types of special needs in home-based, community-based, and inclusive center-based programs."
Assistant Professor, Department of Special Education, San Francisco State University - Alise Paillard
"Provides step-by-step strategies needed to implement a universally designed preschool program and make data-based decisions about children's progress towards individual learning objectives."
Assistant Professor, Education Department, Otterbein College - Sunhwa Jung
"A teacher-friendly book that fits inclusive preschool classrooms very well . . . include[es] many handy forms and instruction examples that are ready to use."
Juniper Gardens Children's Project, University of Kansas - Judith J. Carta
"An absolute must . . . can help teachers and early intervention team members plan, implement and evaluate educational practices to address children's unique needs."
Coordinator of Early Childhood Studies, Empire State College - Jacqui Berger
"An excellent tool that every preschool program can put into action . . . so young children with special needs can grow and flourish."
Janice Myck-Wayne

"provides the "how-to" for implementing inclusive practices... ."
California Bookwatch Midwest Book Review
"...offers a lifeline for preschool teachers...teachers and education libraries will find it a fine tool."
Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities - Hannah Schertz

"The book is most valuable for its wealth of strategies for modifying the curriculum. ...a practical resource for early childhood teachers who are in search of ways to implement RTI in preschool settings. ...a straightforward resource that is easy to follow, with clear guidance for addressing child learning needs in inclusive settings."

December 2011 The Bookwatch Education Shelf
"A fine revision of a best-seller . . . gives educators research-based inclusion strategies that cover everything from behavior to literacy issues."
The Midwest Book Review - The Bookwatch
"Early learning libraries must have this!"
Dimensions of Early Childhood (SECA)
"With ever-increasing accountability expectations, Building Blocks offers a refreshing tool of practicality for the teaching tool belt!"
The authors, professors of special education at the University of Washington, offer suggestions for easily implemented curriculum modifications that allow all children to participate, embedded learning opportunities to use in typical classroom activities, and child-focused instructional strategies that help students achieve individual learning objectives, including IEP goals. Examples are given for everyday classroom situations such as free play, book corner, and clean up. Reproducible forms are included. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781557669674
  • Publisher: Brookes, Paul H. Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 5/1/2008
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 237
  • Sales rank: 203,846
  • Product dimensions: 8.40 (w) x 10.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Dr. Sandall is an assistant professor at the University of Washington in special education with a specialization in early intervention and early childhood special education (EI/ECSE). She has directed personnel preparation projects, developed curriculum materials for all age groups, and published materials on instructional strategies to facilitate optimal outcomes for young children with disabilities. Dr. Sandall is a board member of the Division for Early Childhood (DEC), Council for Exceptional Children, and an investigator on DEC's research project to synthesize EI/ECSE research practices and translate them to recommended field practices. She is also co-editor of DEC's Young Exceptional Children monograph series and co-editor of DEC Recommended Practices in Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education (with Mary McLean and Barbara J. Smith, Sopris West, 2000).

Ilene S. Schwartz, Ph.D. is Professor at the University of Washington in the area of special education. Dr. Schwartz has an extensive background working with young children with special needs, specifically with young children with autism and other disabilities. Dr. Schwartz is the faculty advisor for the inclusive preschool and kindergarten programs at the Experimental Education Unit at the University of Washington, where she maintains an active line of research and personnel preparation activities. Dr. Schwartz is Principal Investigator of several projects, including a model demonstration project to develop school-based services for young children with autism, a research project to assess the differential effectiveness of preschool programs for young children with autism, and a personnel preparation program for early childhood education teachers who work with children with severe disabilities in inclusive settings. Dr. Schwartz has published numerous chapters and articles about early childhood education and social validity. She serves on the editorial review boards of the Journal of Early Intervention and Topics in Early Childhood Special Education.

Mary Louise Hemmeter, Ph.D., is a professor in the Department of Special Education at Vanderbilt University. She teaches courses, advises students, and conducts research on early childhood issues. She is the cofaculty director of the Susan Gray School for Children, which is an early childhood program for children with and without disabilities. Her research focuses on effective instruction, social–emotional development and challenging behavior, translating research to practice, and effective approaches to professional development. Currently, she directs an Institute of Education Sciences–funded research project focused on the efficacy of implementing the Teaching Pyramid in classrooms, and she works on the National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning and the Office of Special Education Programs–funded Technical Assistance Center on Social Emotional Interventions. She is a coeditor of the Journal of Early Intervention and serves on the editorial boards of other major journals in early childhood special education. She served as President of the Council for Exceptional Children’s Division for Early Childhood (DEC) and received the Merle B. Karnes award from DEC.

Hsin-Ying Chou, Ed.D., served as Research Assistant for the Early Childhood Research Institute on Inclusion (ECRII) at the University of Washington. She has worked with young children with special needs in Taiwan and the United States. Her professional interests include parent-professional relationships and decision making. She received her doctorate in education from the University of Washington in 2001.

Dr. Horn is Associate Professor of Early Childhood Education at the University of Kansas. Dr. Horn focuses on the development of effective instructional approaches for infants and young children with developmental delays and disabilities. Her research examines how these effective strategies can be implemented within the context of ongoing routines and activities in inclusive environments. Dr. Horn is the editor of the journal Young Exceptional Children.

Gail E. Joseph, Ph.D., Mental Health Specialist at the Head Start Bureau in Washington, DC. She completed her doctorate at the University of Washington and was Head Teacher in an inclusive Head Start classroom in the Experimental Education Unit. Dr. Joseph's research and practice focus on the social and emotional development of young, high-risk children and mental health interventions for children and families. She is co-author of the DEC Recommended Practices Program Assessment (with Mary Louise Hemmeter, Barbara J. Smith, and Susan R. Sandall, Sopris West, 2001).

Joan Lieber, Ph.D., is Professor of Special Education in the College of Education at the University of Maryland. Her research interests include inclusion and teachers' beliefs and practices. She has 8 years of public school teaching experience. Dr. Lieber co-directs an early childhood special education model demonstration project that includes young children with disabilities in community-based programs.

Samuel L. Odom is Director of the Frank Porter Graham (FPG) Child Development Institute and Professor of Education at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Prior to his work at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Dr. Odom previously served in faculty positions at Indiana University and Peabody College/Vanderbilt University. Dr. Odom received a master's degree in special education in 1976 and an educational specialist degree in educational psychology from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville in 1979. He earned his doctorate in 1982 in education and human development from the University of Washington.

Throughout his career, Dr. Odom has held positions as a preschool teacher, student teaching supervisor, program coordinator, teacher educator, and researcher. He has written many articles and chapters about programs for young children and their families and has served as the co-editor of five books on early childhood special education. Dr. Odom is an associate editor for Exceptional Children and is on the editorial board of Journal of Early Intervention, Topics in Early Childhood Special Education, Journal of Autism and Developmental Disabilities, and Early Childhood Research Quarterly. He received the Special Education Outstanding Research Award from the American Educational Research Association Special Education Special Interest Group in 1999, the Merle Karnes Contribution to the Field Award from the Division for Early Childhood of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) in 2001, and the Outstanding Special Education Research Award from CEC in 2007.

Dr. Odom's research interests include interventions and teaching approaches that promote social competence of young children, effective intervention approaches for children with autism, and early childhood curricula that promote children's school success.

Ruth Wolery, Ph.D., is Assistant Professor of the Practice of Special Education at Peabody College and Director of the Susan Gray School for Children. Prior to joining the Early Childhood Research Institute on Inclusion (ECRII) team, she spent years working in the public school system. Her current teaching and research interests focus on delivering high-quality services to young children with disabilities in inclusive preschool programs.

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Table of Contents

CD-ROM Contents
About the Authors
Foreword Mary Louise Hemmeter

I. Using the Building Blocks Framework
  1. Introduction
  2. Evidence-Based Practice and the Building Blocks Framework
  3. Keys to Collaboration
  4. Getting Started

II. Teaching Strategies
  1. Curriculum Modifications
    Curriculum Modifications by Type
    Curriculum Modifications by Activity and Routine
  2. Embedded Learning Opportunities
  3. Child-Focused Instructional Strategies

III.Important Topics Related to the Building Blocks Framework
  1. Becoming More Independent
  2. Acquiring and Using Knowledge Including Language and Early Literacy
  3. Friendships and Social Relationships
  4. Developmentally Appropriate Classroom Behavior
  5. Concluding Thoughts

Appendix ABlank Forms
Appendix BAdditional Resources

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