PASADENA, Calif., Dec. 10, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Just in time for holiday gift-giving, Pacific Oaks College and The Children's School, internationally renowned for over 50 years of innovative early childhood education programs focused on play, non-violence, anti-bias and individual autonomy, have published a recommended book list for young children (and their parents and caregivers). The books on the list provide global perspective and engage very young children to age eight -- inviting imaginative play as well as offering an opportunity for adults to talk with children about universal themes including diversity and acceptance, resolving conflict, and problem solving.
"Over the past few years we have seen a disturbing resurgence in anger and violence connected with explicit bias—be it racial, religious, socio-economic, gender or based on sexual identity," says Cheryl Greer-Jarman, who teaches human development courses and the anti-bias curriculum at Pacific Oaks College. "Helping children learn how to respond to change and value diversity has never been more relevant to the future of our global community."
Greer-Jarman has been a member of the faculty of Pacific Oaks for 31 years and was an original member of the College's anti-bias task force and a contributing author to the Anti-Bias Curriculum: Tools for Empowering Young Children (NAEYC, 1989, 2009). She is quick to note that beginning a dialog about conflict and bias doesn't require books that are explicitly written to address these issues. "In fact anti-bias has more to do with a value system that includes thinking critically – and for the youngest children that includes 'questioning'." She says most books can be a teaching tool, act as facilitated discussion segues, or simply be a way of imagining varied modes of living and being.
"What's most important and enduring about the books on our list is that they speak to children everywhere – and right where they are," says Anne Schiller, who has been leading the two and three year old program at The Children's School for over 15 years and is the School's resident children's book guru. "They lead with humor, are filled with adventure, and the dynamic illustrations are whimsical, warm and engaging. Children see themselves in these very situations and can begin to recognize and celebrate the similarities and differences in other children's experiences."
View and download the Pacific Oaks College and Children's School Celebrating Ourselves and Each Other Book List at http://www.pacificoaks.edu/books-for-young-children/, with brief commentary on each book by Anne Schiller and other faculty from Pacific Oaks College and The Children's School.
About Pacific Oaks College and The Children's School
Pacific Oaks College and The Children's School have played a crucial role in the development of early childhood education in the United States for over 50 years. Founded in 1959 by a small group of Quaker families, Pacific Oaks College is dedicated to the fundamental Quaker principles of inclusion, social justice, and the valuing of every human being. The College's faculty has developed innovative curriculum and tools that are widely used in early childhood and teacher training programs--both in the U.S. and throughout the world. Pacific Oaks is well-known for its leadership in curriculum based on learning through play, and for the ground-breaking Anti-Bias Curriculum that has been implemented in schools throughout the country and is often required reading in early childhood teacher training courses.
An accredited non-profit institution, Pacific Oaks College offers bachelor’s, master’s, and certificate programs in human development, counseling, and teaching credentialing.
Founded in 1945, The Children's School is widely recognized today as one of the finest preschools in the Los Angeles region.
For more information, see www.pacificoaks.edu.
SOURCE Pacific Oaks College and The Children's School