Young Children's Behaviour : Guidance approaches for early childhood educators book cover
4th Edition

Young Children's Behaviour
Guidance approaches for early childhood educators

ISBN 9781760113957
Published January 27, 2016 by Routledge
504 Pages

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Book Description

'The book provides a comprehensive, yet practical discussion of guidance strategies that can be implemented in a variety of situations. These strategies promote a respect for children and their rights, enhance children's self-esteem, and help to foster pro-social skills. This book is a must-read for both students and practitioners who work with children and families.' - Dr Laura McFarland, School of Education, Charles Sturt University

Drawing on the latest research evidence, Young Children's Behaviour outlines the beliefs and values that underpin the guidance approach to managing the behaviours of children from birth to eight years of age. In contrast with rewards-and-punishment systems, guidance believes that children do not need incentives to behave well, but instead need skills. Rather than punishing them for lacking skills, guidance teaches young children self-regulation skills so that they can behave considerately.

The author provides practical strategies that both meet children's needs and safeguard the rights of surrounding adults and children. These methods include listening, being assertive, giving positive instructions, solving problems collaboratively, and coaching children to self-regulate their emotions and impulses. The text also offers advice on responding to many common challenges including separation distress, meltdowns, aggression, and social withdrawal. Finally, the book suggests how educators can provide educational and behavioural support for children with atypical development and describes how to foster effective relationships with parents whose children display challenging behaviours.

Dr Louise Porter powerfully argues that behaviour guidance is the most effective approach to working with young children and reflects the deepest values of early childhood education and care.

Table of Contents


1. Principles of early years education

2. Principles of behaviour guidance

3. Needs

4. Understanding emotions

5. Providing a child-centred program: mastery and accomplishment

6. Meeting children's basic needs: survival, safety and wellbeing

7. Meeting children's need for self-esteem: competence and worth

8. Meeting children's need to belong: care and connection

9. Meeting children's need for autonomy: voice and choice

10. Influences on behaviour

11. Listening to children

12. Everyday guidance practices

13. Supporting children's self-regulation

14. Solving persistent problems

15. Solutions to children's emotional difficulties

16. Solutions to children's social difficulties

17. Interventions for children with atypical development

18. Collaboration with parents





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An adjunct senior lecturer at Flinders University, Dr Louise Porter is a child psychologist with 35 years' experience of working with children. A sought-after international speaker, she is also the author of many books including A Comprehensive Guide to Classroom Management, Parental Guidance Recommended and Gifted Young Children.