Secure attachment between child and parent is one of the most important factors in early learning and development—and for children in infant-toddler programs, teachers are a critical third partner in this relationship dance. That's why child care administrators and educators need this warm and practical program guide.
An in-depth blueprint for promoting attachment and relationships in early childhood settings, this book helps professional caregivers and educators develop sensitive, nurturing relationships with young children. In the process, they'll strengthen parent–child attachment and the supportive relationships among the adults who nurture the children.
With the clear and detailed model in Extending the Dance, readers will
• establish relationship-based programs that keep teachers and children together throughout the entire program and encourage strong connections between them
• develop respectful, mutually beneficial partnerships with parents of diverse cultural backgrounds
• refine teaching practices by carefully observing, documenting, sharing, and reflecting on what happens during the child care day
• plan comfortable, engaging physical environments indoors and outdoors that create community and excite children's minds
• ensure that children's individual needs are met by the program's structure and routines
• promote children's social skills and peer relationships
• ease transition times and promote continuity by providing sensitive support to children and parents
• improve professional communication and support among teachers and administrators in a community of learning
To help them establish and maintain a relationship-based early childhood program, administrators and teachers will get concrete guidance on every step of the process, plus inspiration and ideas from successful programs in the United States and around the world.
With this innovative program guide, early childhood educators will be full participants in the dance of early attachment—and promote the healthy emotional, physical, cognitive, and language development of the young children they care for.
Review: The Midwest Book Review Education Shelf
"A fine key to developing nurturing relationships with kids . . . a fine early learning tool."
Review by: Laurie Brasile, What's Up Newsletter, Nebraska Early Childhood Training Center
". . . a detailed overview of the elements of infant attachment. The writing of this book firmly grounded in child development theory and is most inviting . . . This book promotes ways for parents and teachers to secure that these positive relationships are established."
Review by: Harriet Meyer, President, Ounce of Prevention Fund
"A crucial tool for understanding the importance of relationships in early learning . . . help[s] to illuminate some of the most important elements of secure attachment and its implications for interventions."
Review by: J. Ronald Lally, Co-Director, Center for Child & Family Studies, WestEd
"Wisely and beautifully shows how depth, quality, and continuity of relationship with babies makes us better 'dancers.' These authors know where school readiness really begins."
About the Authors
1. The Dances of Infancy: Bringing the Relationship Focus to Infant and Toddler Programs
2. The First Dance: Foundations of Attachment and Development in the Early Years
3. An Old Song: Relationship-Based Care in Cultural and Historical Context
4. Step by Step: Learning the Moves of the Relationship Dance in an Infant and Toddler Program
5. The Right Foot: Beginnings and Endings
Carolyn Pope Edwards and Lella Gandini
6. Now Really Dance: Individualizing, Documenting, and Planning
Carolyn Pope Edwards and Lella Gandini
7. A Beautiful Dance Hall: Space and Environments
8. Staying in Step: Supporting Relationships with Families
9. Lots of Little Feet: Supporting Peer Relationships
10. Closing the Circle: Supporting Teachers and Administrators
About the Authors:
Helen H. Raikes, Ph.D., is Professor in the Department of Child, Youth and Family Studies at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. She received her doctorate in child development from Iowa State University. Previously, she has had teaching positions at the University of California, Davis, and at Iowa State University. Among other foci, she has maintained a career-long interest in secure base relationships for infants and toddlers and first created an attachment-based model while Director of Infant Toddler Programs and Director of Research at the SRI/Saint Elizabeth and Gallup Organization Child Development Center in Lincoln, Nebraska. She was also a Society for Research in Child Development Executive Policy Fellow at the Administration on Children, Youth and Families at the time the Early Head Start program began and co-directed the national research for that program. Today, her work focuses on programs for children in poverty, with special emphases on infants and toddlers, children at greatest risk, and optimal timing of intervention as it relates to developmental trajectories, school readiness, and later success, as well as on innovative continuous program improvement efforts using research and evaluation. She is a board member of the Nebraska Early Childhood Endowment Board, the Buffett Early Childhood Fund, and the Nebraska Children and Families Foundation and is a member of the National Forum on Early Childhood Program Evaluation.
Carolyn Pope Edwards, Ed.D., is Willa Cather Professor at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln, with joint appointments in the Departments of Psychology and Child, Youth and Family Studies. She received her doctorate in Human Development from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She has taught previously at Vassar College, University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and University of Kentucky and held visiting research professor positions at universities in Kenya, Italy, and Norway. Her research spans the areas of child development, early childhood education, cross-cultural studies, and teacher preparation and professional development. She is currently studying strategies for strengthening mathematics education and the links between teacher knowledge, attitudes, and student achievement in the early grades and strategies for enhancing young children’s school readiness through strengthening literacy education as well as parent and family engagement. Much of her writing describes and analyzes relationship-building practices and pedagogical documentation in the worldrenowned infant-toddler centers and preschools in northern and central Italy. She is active on many policy committees at the national and state levels that focus on early childhood curriculum and teacher preparation from preschool to primary and was part of the NAEYC Working Group on Developmentally Appropriate Practice.
Lella Gandini, Ed.D., is Adjunct Professor of Education at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and Visiting Scholar (2007–2009) at Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She taught as lecturer at Smith College and Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts and was a visiting researcher at the National Center of Research in Rome, Italy. She received her master’s degree in child study from Smith College, her doctoral degree in education from the University of Massachusetts, and, in 2004, an honorary doctorate in humane letters from the Erikson Institute. She is the U.S. Liaison for the Dissemination of the Reggio Emilia Approach on behalf of Reggio Children, Italy, and a correspondent for the Italian educational magazine Bambini. She is Associate Editor of Innovations in Early Education: The International Reggio Exchange. Her research and writing have focused on parenting and on the philosophy and practices related to care and education of young children in Reggio Emilia and Pistoia, Italy. Her study and exchange supporting the professional development of North American teachers requires frequent periods of direct observation in those Italian cities.