Creating and Thinking Critically in the Early Years Cover

Creating and Thinking Critically in the Early Years

Focuses on teaching and learning and its practical implications for early years practice

This series helps early childhood educators to build a thorough understanding of the characteristics of effective learning - but it doesn't stop there. Crucially, it links that understanding to highly practical ideas for planning and developing a child-centred curriculum that recognises young learners as active participants in the learning process. Each of the three easy-to-use resources explores one essential area of learning: learning actively; playing and exploring; or creating and thinking critically. Considering observations in early years settings as well as current research and thinking, they cover communication and language, the learning environment (both indoors and outdoors) and extended learning. Together they present the "big picture" of learning that can be put to work successfully across a wide range of early years settings.

Ages: 1-4 | Pages: 82 | Code: 0804 | ISBN: 9781927251287

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Di Chilvers

Di Chilvers is an independent consultant in early childhood education and has worked in the early years sector for over 35 years. Originally trained as a nursery nurse, then as a teacher, Di has an MA in Early Childhood Education and is working towards a qualification in psychology. She continues to be fascinated by the ways in which young children develop, think and learn.


Foreword by Jennie Lindon4
1. What does 'creating and thinking critically' mean?7
The characteristics of children's learning8
Children's dispositions10
Thinking critically13
Building creative thinking together17
Being creative20
Communication and language21
2. Children have their own ideas25
The significance of children's ideas25
Describing children's ideas26
Observing children's ideas28
Group and individual creativity31
Following children's ideas and interests33
Adult support34
Communicating ideas41
3. Children make links42
The significance of making links42
Learning and development44
Sustained, shared thinking46
Observing links47
Adult support51
Enabling environment54
Support through language and communication54
4. Children choose ways to do things56
Why give children choices?56
Observing play64
Adult support68
Enabling environment69
5. A thoughtful approach71
Key themes and messages72
Transitions and future pathways72
A thoughtful approach in practice73
Leading good practice78
A final thought78