Category Archive: Be a PhD

Information about children's learning and development paired with simple materials and activity ideas. Read on and earn your PhD!

Infant/Toddler book has been released!

After many years in the early childhood field, Dr. Jenn has completed her infant/toddler development and curriculum book. Check it out and let her know what you think! The book is completely digital and full of links to pertinent videos, websites and articles.

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How to Get a Child “Ready” for Preschool

Recently I did some work with Parents magazine about the importance of preschool and what a quality preschool looks like. The first topic I was asked to address is something that I am asked often: How do you “prepare” a child for preschool? My answer is always to remember three things: Talk to them, Read …

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Read Read Read to your kids!

I brought home a book from my office that we haven’t read with the kids before (The Mitten by Jan Brett). I told Miss H that we would read it after breakfast. She asked to hold it and said “Mommy I’m going to read it first.” She then sat down on the floor in front …

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Some Tips for Understanding and Responding to Newborns and Young Infants

On May 24th our family happily welcomed Baby M. The past 3 weeks have been wonderful as we watch him get acclimated to the world, our family and especially his big sister Miss H. Every day I am reminded of both how amazing infants are and how important it is to meet their needs . When we …

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Prop Boxes in Early Childhood Classrooms

“Prop Boxes” are essentially a box full of materials related to the same theme or topic. The children play with the materials, act out scenarios related to the theme and add the materials to their own play. When using Prop Boxes in my own preschool classroom, I found that not only was the children’s play …

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Linking Children’s Literature with Cooking

Children’s literature is an obvious part of early childhood classrooms. Children learn about and come to understand the world through their experiences with fictional and nonfictional stories. Cooking is another part of early childhood classrooms that I feel should be just as obvious. The skills that children learn when participating in a cooking experience are …

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First Explorations with Letters

Before children are even using writing utensils to attempt to write letters, they are making them with whatever they can find. Here are a few basic items to have in your classroom that children can use to explore the shapes, sizes and structures of letters for the first time:

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Interactive Drawing with Toddlers

Interactive Drawing is a practice found in many early childhood classrooms. The premise is that a teacher explains to the children that authors use drawing to show their thinking on paper. It is also emphasizes that drawing is writing and can communicate a message. This is especially important for children who aren’t writing yet, and …

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Basic Tips for ESL/ELL Instruction

Almost every classroom in the United States has children whose first language is not English. Early Childhood teaching strategies are very appropriate for working with this population of children. Here are a few tips for teachers with ESL children in their classrooms:

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The Different Types of Alphabet Books

ABC Concept books don’t focus on one specific theme for the book, but rather focus on learning the actual letters. The children will primarily learn the alphabet. Try: Chicka Chicka Boom Boom ABC Content books have one central theme and each letter represents something from that theme. The children will learn theme-specific vocabulary and the alphabet. Try: Eating the Alphabet: Fruits & Vegetables from A …

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