Studying Childhood and Early Childhood: A Guide for Students

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Overview

Covering all the key themes, different theoretical views and approaches to studying childhood and early childhood, this book guides you through your course, telling you exactly what is expected of you throughout your studies. It will ensure you develop the skills you need to become successful, and key areas covered include:

  • Making the transition from personal experience of children, to studying childhood
  • Making the most of your lectures
  • Writing good assignments
  • Learning how to study independently
  • Developing your critical thinking
  • Drawing on the full range of student resources (people, services, research visits)
  • Getting a job in the early years sector
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'This new revised edition includes a new chapter on placements and more thoroughly considers the role and place of multi-agency working...Chapter 4 is particularly useful and provides an excellent discussion on making informed judgements in professional practice...Overall the book is comprehensive in its coverage of core skills and very accessible for students. It captures the challenges faced by Early Childhood students well and emphasises the importance of making and justifying professional decisions. There is also a comprehensive list of further reading and resources which will undoubtedly be useful for both new and final year students' -
ESCalate

'[This book] is a great guide to read prior to beginning a course and will help prepare students not only for studying childhood at degree level, but also for writing assignments and carrying out research projects too. It even offers advice on career opportunities and 'next steps' after completing a course' -
Nursery Education PLUS

'I think this is an excellent book for childhood and early childhood students, and I can't recommend it highly enough. The authors have captured precisely the challenging issues for students, and this book really helps to develop students' understanding of the importance of knowledge and judgement in their future work with children' - Elise Alexander, Principal Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies, Roehampton University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781412907453
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications
  • Publication date: 7/28/2005
  • Pages: 160
  • Product dimensions: 9.60 (w) x 6.80 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Sue Miller
Sue Miller
Sue Miller is an expert in limning the pain of endings, but if this were the extent of her talents, she probably would not be as successful as she is. In Miller's books, one broken relationship often leads to the development of another. Her stories may not offer pat answers and perfect love stories, but readers find something more rewarding in the end.

Biography

Since her iconic first novel, The Good Mother in 1986, Sue Miller has distinguished herself as one of our most elegant and widely celebrated chroniclers of family life, with a singular gift for laying bare the interior lives of her characters.

While not strictly speaking autobiographical, Miller's fiction is, nonetheless, shaped by her experiences. Born into an academic and ecclesiastical family, she grew up in Chicago's Hyde Park and went to college at Harvard. She was married at 20 and held down a series of odd jobs until her son Ben was born in 1968. She separated from her first husband in 1971, subsequently divorced, and for 13 years was a single parent in Cambridge, Massachusetts, working in day care, taking in roomers, and writing whenever she could.

In these early years, Miller's productivity was directly proportional to her ability to win grants and fellowships. An endowment in 1979 allowed her to enroll in the Creative Writing Program at Boston University. A few of her stories were accepted for publication, and she began teaching in the Boston area. Two additional grants in the 1980s enabled her to concentrate on writing fulltime. Published in 1986, her first novel became an international bestseller.

Since then, success has followed success. Two of Miller's books (The Good Mother and Inventing the Abbots) have been made into feature films; her 1990 novel Family Pictures was nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award; Oprah Winfrey selected While I Was Gone for her popular Book Club; and in 2004, a first foray into nonfiction -- the poignant, intensely personal memoir The Story of My Father -- was widely praised for its narrative eloquence and character dramatization.

Miller is a distinguished practitioner of "domestic fiction," a time-honored genre stretching back to Jane Austen, Henry James, and Leo Tolstoy and honed to perfection by such modern literary luminaries as John Updike, Flannery O'Connor, and Richard Ford. A careful observer of quotidian detail, she stretches her novels across the canvas of home and hearth, creating extraordinary stories out of the quiet intimacies of marriage, family, and friendship. In an article written for the New York Times "Writers on Writing" series, she explains: "For me everyday life in the hands of a fine writer seems ... charged with meaning. When I write, I want to bring a sense of that charge, that meaning, to what may fairly be called the domestic."

Good To Know

Here are some fascinating outtakes from our interview with Sue Miller:
  • "I come from a long line of clergy. My father was an ordained minister in the Presbyterian church, though as I grew up, he was primarily an academic at several seminaries -- the University of Chicago, and then Princeton. Both my grandfathers were also ministers, and their fathers too. It goes back farther than that in a more sporadic way."

  • "I spent a year working as a cocktail waitress in a seedy bar just outside New Haven, Connecticut. Think high heels, mesh tights, and the concentrated smell of nicotine. Think of the possible connections of this fact to the first fact, above."

  • "I like northern California, where we've had a second home we're selling -- it's just too far away from Boston. I've had a garden there that has been a delight to create, as the plants are so different from those in New England, which is where I've done most of my gardening. I had to read up on them. I studied Italian gardens too -- the weather is very Mediterranean. I like weeding -- it's almost a form of meditation."

  • "I like little children. I loved working in daycare and talking to kids, learning how they form their ideas about the world's workings -- always intriguing, often funny. I try to have little children in my life, always."

  • "I want to make time to take piano lessons again. I did it for a while as an adult and enjoyed it.

  • "I like to cook and to have people over. I love talking with people over good food and wine. Conversation -- it's one of life's deepest pleasures."
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      1. Hometown:
        Boston, Massachusetts
      1. Date of Birth:
        November 29, 1943
      2. Place of Birth:
        Chicago, Illinois
      1. Education:
        B.A., Radcliffe College, 1964; M.A.T., Wesleyan U., 1965; Ed.M., Harvard U., 1975; M.A. Boston U., 1980

    Table of Contents

    Acknowledgements viii

    About the Authors ix

    Introduction xi

    1 Key Course Themes 1

    2 Reading into Writing 24

    3 Producing a Good Assignment 49

    4 Visits, Observations and Placements 72

    5 Doing your Dissertation or Research Project 87

    6 Life Afterwards: Getting a Job and Further Study 101

    Further Reading and Resources 131

    Index 138

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