Thursday, December 22, 2016

My Favorite Early Learning Resources

Papa Green Bean's Top Twelve 

Here is a treasure chest of free resources for parents. Give each a look and please follow the ones you like. They are the best of what I've seen anywhere—honestly helpful and inspiring.

1) Teacher Tom's Blog  (Age Range 2 - 5)

Teacher Tom is my favorite early learning writer. He understand children like no other I know. He posts five times a week. If you have a Facebook account, please like his Teacher Tom page. It is often my favorite read of the day. Tom Hobson is the only employee of the Woodland Park Cooperative School in Seattle, Washington. In his words, "The children come to us as 2-year-olds in diapers and leave as "sophisticated" 5-year-olds ready for kindergarten. The cooperative school model allows me to work very closely with families in a true community setting." 

I love when my dad reads Teacher Tom's blog!

2) Forty Short Films for Early Learning  (Age Range: 1 - 6)

The Department of Education in Zurich, Switzerland has created an astonishingly beautiful series of forty films—less than five minutes each. They are "designed to support professionals who work in early childhood education, care and upbringing: In the areas of family support, parental counseling and education. For this reason, the short films are available in 13 languages with extensive expert commentary."

Play based learning is the best!

3) Montessori Life: Jennifer Rogers  (Age Range: 2.5 - 6)
I am Montessori trained, having recieved an AMI (Association Montessori Internationale) degree for children aged 2.5 to 6 over twenty years ago. The Montessori Difference, however, is in the philosophy of child rearing, which extends well beyond pre-schools and parenting—it's a way of life. All the best parenting techniques thrive from this base: understanding the psyche of newborns.

Where is my spoon, mom?

4) The Gentle Sleep Book - Sarah Ockwell-Smith (Age Range: Birth - 6)

Everything I've read from Sarah Ockwell-Smith has been spot on—she is another who really understand the thoughts of children and what is best for them. Be sure to click on her blog and vlog pages. "She specialises in the psychology and science of parenting, ‘gentle parenting’ and attachment theory. Sarah is famed for her ability to translate her vast knowledge of parenting science into easy to understand language."

Hmmm, is this my big brother's spoon?

5) Rick Ackerly - The Genius in Children (Age Range: Birth on up)

Rick Ackerly's blog is excellent. He thoughts are pristine. It is a privilege and honor to recommend him and his work.

A little mustard on top...

6) Janet Lansbury: Elevating Parenting (Age Range: Birth - 4)

Resources for Infant Educarers (RIE) inspired by Magda Gerber is best represented by Janet Lansbury. It is based on total respect for the child as an equal—which is the correct way to think, of course. Janet was fortunate to have studied in person with Magda Gerber and was forever inspired.

I love it when parents are elevated!

7) Attachment Parenting (Age Range: Birth - 6)

I'm a huge fan. The term 'attachment parenting' is misleading. It's really about being a naturally loving parent—just the way we should all be. Then, children grow up secure and self-confident, which creates an independent individual. AP is the premier advocate for bed-sharing and baby-wearing. Attachment Parenting International (API) promotes parenting practices that create strong, healthy emotional bonds between children and their parents. For life. So they can take those bonds with them into their adult lives and share them with their children. And their children can do the same. A life cycle of compassion and connection.

Creating lifetime concentration 

8) Zero to Three (Age Range: Birth to three)

This is a well run non-profit organization—a good resource. "ZERO TO THREE has advanced the proven power of nurturing relationships by transforming the science of early childhood into helpful resources, practical tools and responsive policies for millions of parents, professionals and policymakers."

I know what is going to happen but who cares—I want to read it again and again!

9) Deborah McNelis: Brain Insights (Age Range: Birth on up)

Deborah McNelis gets what makes children tick. She is an "Early Brain Development Specialist and owner of Brain Insights." She helps adults understand the importance of the first years from a brain development perspective.

Up the down is a child experimenting

10) Laura Grace Weldon - Free Range Learning (Age Range: 4 plus)

Laura Grace Weldon is the author of the book, Free Range Learning. It focuses on homeschooling but is much more. We have become friends as her sense of humor is like-minded. Read her "About Me" page on her blog and you'll understand. Her fresh, intelligent and poetic take on life make her a special person.

Now this is some serious free range learning!

11) Torsten Klaus - Dad's Talk Community (Age Range: 4 - 12+)

Torsten Klaus's blog Dad's Talk is perhaps the best blog, I've seen, written from a father's perspective.  He has a good Facebook page as well—for you to follow.

Play is child's work

12) Gary Direnfeld (Age Range: 5+)

Gary Direnfeld is a licensed psychologist, a practicing social worker and family therapist—and he understands the dynamic going on inside children. Browse through his articles on parenting for your benefit.
I wanted a green bean but this will do, pops...

Have a fun time checking out these gems.

Cheers, Papa Green Bean


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