Building Blocks: Making Children Successful in the Early Years of School

Overview

A student's entire journey along the educational spectrum is affected by what occurs—and, crucially, by what does not occur—before the age of eight or nine. Yet early learning has never received the attention it deserves and needs. In his latest book, education expert Gene Maeroff takes a hard look at early learning and the primary grades of schooling. Building Blocks offers a concrete and groundbreaking strategy for improving early education. Filled with colorful descriptions and anecdotes from Maeroff's visits ...

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Building Blocks: Making Children Successful in the Early Years of School

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Overview

A student's entire journey along the educational spectrum is affected by what occurs—and, crucially, by what does not occur—before the age of eight or nine. Yet early learning has never received the attention it deserves and needs. In his latest book, education expert Gene Maeroff takes a hard look at early learning and the primary grades of schooling. Building Blocks offers a concrete and groundbreaking strategy for improving early education. Filled with colorful descriptions and anecdotes from Maeroff's visits to schools around the country, Building Blocks creates a rich portrait of education in America, ranging from math lessons imported from Singapore in Massachusetts to serious but joyful kindergartens in California. He speaks of the need for schools to prepare for the burgeoning enrollment of youngsters from immigrant families and for all children to acquire the habits and dispositions that will make them committed and productive students. Maeroff issues a call to action for policy makers and parents alike.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This book describes what works in early childhood education. It is a treasure. It is a must read for educators, policy makers, practitioners and academics as well as parents and the general public."—Arthur Levine, President, Teachers College, Columbia University

"Strong communities understand that investing in kids early ensures they have every opportunity to be successful throughout their lives. Maeroff has an important message for those of us who support early childhood education—it is vital and it works to the benefit of all children. Building Blocks is a book for everyone, from parents to policymakers."—Governor Thomas J. Vilsack (D-IA)

"It would be an exaggeration to say that Gene Maeroff has been covering education as long as it has existed. It just seems that way."—The Cleveland Plain Dealer

"Maeroff has made a powerful case for the critical importance of integrated approaches to preschool, kindergarten, and grades one through three for all children. Drawing on cutting edge research and best practices Maeroff chronicles the characteristics of effective programs with clarity and insight. Policy makers, educators, parents, and all who are committed to schools where every child learns and all children achieve at or above grade level by third grade will find inspiration and guidance in Building Blocks."—James B. Hunt, Jr., Chairman of the Board, James B. Hunt Jr. Institute for Educational Leadership and Policy, former Governor of North Carolina

"Building Blocks adds a much needed voice to the debate about closing the nation's achievement gap. The book, brimming with excellent and well-documented examples, gives readers a comprehensive, thoughtful, and compelling argument about why quality early education is necessary for improving the school outcomes for all students. An excellent and important book that I highly recommend."—Gerry House, President/CEO, Institute for Student Achievement, Former Superintendent of Schools, Memphis, TN and Chapel Hill, NC

"Anyone who cares about the future of America should have an interest in the way that schools educate the youngest children. Maeroff's new book, Building Blocks, examines in depth what happens during the years from prekindergarten through third grade. This is a book not only for parents and educators, but for everyone who wonders about the kind of foundation that will prepare youngsters for a lifetime of learning."—Ray Cortines

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781403969941
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 8/22/2006
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 6.38 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 0.98 (d)

Meet the Author

Gene I. Maeroff was Founding Director of the Hechinger Institute on Education and the Media at Teachers College, Columbia University, where he is now Senior Fellow. He is a former national education correspondent for The New York Times and is the author of over a dozen books, including The Guide to Suburban Public Schools, Team Building for School Change, School Smart Parent, Altered Destinies, and A Classroom of One.

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Table of Contents

A World of New Beginnings

• The Very Early Years

• Pre-Kindergarten for All

• A Full Day of Kindergarten

• Building a New Structure for Learning

• Literacy

• Numeracy

• A Full Complement of Subjects

• Se Habla Espanol . . . and 86 Other Languages

• Instilling Habits and Dispositions

• Making Schools Accountable for the Primary Grades

• Teachers Who Know Young Children

• Before and After School

• Facing Realities in Early Education

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