The Bridge to School provides concise, targeted information for teachers who work in PreK, Transitional Kindergarten, or Kindergarten settings, covering both the why and the how of play in classrooms, along with insights into how the normal development of 4-to-6-year-olds is manifested and how teachers can harness and work with those typical needs and behaviors. This powerful professional resource includes theories of child development, brain development, and the value of play-based learning, but the majority of the content is practical classroom strategies that fall in line with ECERS and allow for appropriate academic skill building.
Chapter 1. How Children Learn to Learn
Chapter 2. The 3R Framework: Room, Routines, and Relationships
Chapter 3. Guiding and Growing the Whole Child
Chapter 4. The Art of Teaching Self-Control
Chapter 5. Language That Supports Young Children
Chapter 6. The Bridge from Play to Instruction, and Instruction to Play
Appendix 1: Help!
Appendix 2: Typical Patterns in Development from Ages Four to Six
Appendix 3: Play Based Learning that Supports Academic Success
Appendix 4: Suggested Additional Reading or Viewing
The Bridge to School is a must-read for anyone interested in having a window into what high quality, developmentally responsive PreK and transitional Kindergarten programs look like from the inside. Through rich descriptions of early learning environments and expansive descriptions of practical strategies, readers are introduced to the nuts and bolts of programs and classrooms that optimally support young children's brain and whole body development. Teachers and administrators charged with creating PreK and TK programs that truly build the cognitive, social-emotional, and physical skills and knowledge that children need for future educational success will find The Bridge to School to be the most valuable, inspiring, and essential roadmap to guide their way.
Julie Nicholson, Ph.D., Deputy Director, WestEd, Center for Child and Family Studies, and Associate Professor of Practice, Mills College, School of Education