Kindergarten: Fours and Fives Go to School

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The only book available that specifically addresses the kindergarten year, it enables readers to become highly skilled and effective teachers with four and five year old children, their families, and the community. The goal of this comprehensive guide is to provide readers with the knowledge of how four and five year olds behave and to offer information about materials and activities that can be used in their professional careers, thus providing a solid foundation on which to develop teaching skills. Today's Kindergarten: The Past Is Present; Understanding Readiness; Four- and Five-Year-Olds Grow and Develop; Are Schools Ready for Four- and Five-Year-Olds?; Classrooms are Ready; Teachers are Ready to Guide Children's Social Behaviors; Planning an Integrated Curriculum; Assessing Kindergarten Children; Art in the Kindergarten; Music and Movement; Literacy Learning for Four- and Five-Year-Olds; Language Arts for Four- and Five-Year-Olds; Four- and Five-Year-Olds Learn Math; Children Study Their World: The Physical, Biological, and Social Sciences. For current and future Preschool and Kindergarten teachers.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780130148353
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall
  • Publication date: 10/28/2001
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Pages: 291
  • Product dimensions: 7.54 (w) x 9.18 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Table of Contents

Pt. I Today's Kindergarten 1
Ch. 1 Today's Kindergarten: The Past Is Present 3
Ch. 2 Understanding Readiness in the Context of Theory and Research 21
Pt. II Ready or Not 39
Ch. 3 Four- and Five-Year-Olds Grow and Develop 41
Ch. 4 Are Schools Ready for Four- and Five-Year-Olds? 61
Ch. 5 Classrooms Are Ready 81
Ch. 6 Teachers Are Ready to Guide Children's Social Behavior 101
Pt. III The Integrated Curriculum 121
Ch. 7 Planning an Integrated Curriculum 123
Ch. 8 Assessing Kindergarten Children 143
Ch. 9 Art in the Kindergarten 161
Ch. 10 Music and Movement 183
Ch. 11 Literacy Learning for Four- and Five-Year-Olds 201
Ch. 12 Language Arts for Four- and Five-Year-Olds 221
Ch. 13 Integrated Mathematics in the Kindergarten 241
Ch. 14 Children Study Their World: The Life, Physical, and Earth Sciences 259
Index 281
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Schools for four- and five-year-olds are nearly universal today. These may be called kindergartens, pre-kindergarten, preschool, early enrichment programs, or some other name. Regardless of the name, more than 90 percent of all five-year-olds and more than 60 percent of four-year-olds in our nation attend kindergarten. Kindergarten is found not just in America but throughout the world, including England, Europe, the Far East, South and Central America, and some African nations.

Kindergarten programs may be half day or full day and everything in between. Full-day programs are popular because they offer children more learning time and respond to parents' needs for full-time schooling for their children. Today more than 56 percent of five-year-olds attend a full-day program, and about a fourth of all four-year-olds attend full day.

A new kind of teacher, one who is highly skilled and knowledgeable of four- and five-year-olds, their families, and the community in which they live and of the process of teaching curriculum content, is called for. This book, Kindergarten: Fours and Fives Go to School, was written to enable students to become effective teachers of four- and five-year-old children, whether they will teach in preschool, pre-kindergarten programs, or kindergarten for four- and five-year-olds. Because the text offers current, up-to-date views of readiness and deals with continuing issues in kindergarten education, in-service teachers will find the text a valuable resource as well.



Kindergarten: Fours and Fives Go to School is a comprehensive guide to teaching in today's kindergartens or preschool programsfor four- and five-year-olds. Part I places the kindergarten in historic perspective and presents current issues surrounding today's preschools and kindergartens. Part II includes chapters on the growth, development, and learning of four- and five-year-olds, and how to prepare classrooms, schools, and teachers to work with four- and five-year-olds. Part III presents chapters on planning and assessment and the integrated content areas of art, music, literacy, mathematics, and the life, physical, and earth sciences.

Focus on Child Growth and Development

Based on theories and principles of child growth, development, and learning, Kindergarten offers teachers a solid foundation on which to develop teaching skills. A separate chapter illustrates the growth and development of four- and five-year-olds and children with special needs. Throughout the text the principles of growth and learning, which guide the curriculum and teaching, are made clear. Specific experiences or ways of including children with special needs are found throughout the text as well. Special attention is given to children just learning English.


Kindergarten: Fours and Fives Go to School views learning as an integrated whole that involves schools, families, and the community. Thus, there is a focus on working with administrators, aides, supervisors, resource persons, and others within the school as well as with families.

Likewise, the curriculum is presented as a whole entity. How to plan for thematic, project learning is the focus of one chapter. The curriculum areas of art; music; the language arts; the life, physical, and earth sciences; and mathematics, although appearing as separate chapters, are presented in a way that forms an integrated, whole curriculum. Assessment and evaluation are not separate from the curriculum. Authentic evaluation techniques, which are integral to learning experiences, are advocated. Standardized testing and its merits, as well as its detriments, are explained.

Active Children, Active Experiences

Four- and five-year-olds, as all humans, learn through their physical, mental, and social activity. Thus, this text presents experiences that require children to be active. Specific suggestions for teaching content through play are given in each of the chapters.

Reality Based. Both of the authors bring an extensive background of educational experiences that are reflected in this text. The first author has taught both four- and five-year-old kindergarten in a number of settings. The second works with preschools for both four- and five-year-olds in the Baltimore City Public Schools.

The vast educational experiences of both authors bring reality to Kindergarten: Fours and Fives Go to School. All the suggested experiences in the text are based not only on theory and research but also on the real, firsthand experiences of the authors. This gives the text a practicality that will be of great use to the beginning kindergarten teacher as well as the expert.


We wish to acknowledge the support and expertise of our editor, Ann Davis; the production editors, Sheryl Langner and Lea Baranowski; and the dedicated work of the reviewers, Richard P Ambrose, Kent State University; Ann Harsh, Hattiesburg Public Schools, Mississippi; and Steven F. Reuter, Minnesota State University, Mankato.

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