What If We Taught the Way Children Learn? More Straight Talk About Bettering Education and Children's Lives, 1st Edition

  • Rae Pica University of New Hampshire
  • Published By:
  • ISBN-10: 1071803018
  • ISBN-13: 9781071803011
  • DDC: 372.21
  • 216 Pages | eBook
  • Original Copyright 2020 | Published/Released September 2020
  • This publication's content originally published in print form: 2020

  • Price:  Sign in for price



We often teach our children in ways contrary to what we know about their development. What if our learning environments honored children’s natural inclinations and used them to enrich their lives? To help students experience joy and discovery, while also preparing them for future schooling, we need to understand the connection between how they develop and how they learn. The author brings decades of experience in education to advocate for this change.

Table of Contents

Front Cover.
Half Title Page.
Title Page.
Copyright Page.
About the Author.
Teaching with Children's Nature in Mind.
1: Giving Children the Positive Reinforcement They Want and Need.
2: Seven Reasons We're Seeing More Challenging Behavior in Early Childhood Settings.
3: Commonsense Solutions to Behavior Challenges.
4: Disruptive Children: Are Drugging and Dismissing Them Our Only Options?.
5: Trouble-Free Transitions: They're Possible If We Understand Child Development.
6: Fostering Self-Regulation: Are We Doing It Wrong?.
7: Logical Consequences Should Be the Norm.
8: Screen Use in the Classroom: Why It's Cause for Concern.
9: Downtime: Necessary for Children's Mental Health and 21st Century Skills.
Teaching with the Body in Mind.
10: Making a Mess of Human Development: The Terrible Impact of Our Choices for Children.
11: This Just In: Young Children Don't Get Enough Exercise.
12: The Link Between Movement and Challenging Behavior.
13: Teaching the Whole Child Means Addressing Physical Development, Too.
14: The Magic of Cross-Lateral Movement.
15: No Fine Motor Skills? What's the Big Deal?.
16: Fidgety, Wiggly Kids? Here's What You Need to Know.
17: Let's Do Away with Crisscross-Applesauce.
18: Five Ways to Sneak Movement Into the Curriculum.
Teaching with Children's Futures in Mind.
19: “What Is That?”: How We Unwittingly Dampen Children's Creative Development.
20: Beyond “One Right Answer”: How to Promote Children's Thinking Skills.
21: Should We Be Talking About Sexism in Early Childhood Education?.
22: “Be Careful!”: Teaching Children to Fear.
23: School Shootings: What Does Early Childhood Have to Do with Them?.
24: Life Lessons Learned from Lunchtime.
25: Children Are Losing Their Connection to Nature and the Consequences Are Real.
26: Who Are We Protecting When We Ban Children's Activities?.
27: The Real Dangers of Childhood: How Do We Help People See Them?.
28: Shouldn't School Safety Drills Be Implemented with the Children in Mind?.
29: Advocating for Children Can Be an Uphill Battle.
30: What If Early Childhood Professionals Pushed Back?.
31: ECE Advocacy: We Have the Numbers and the Tools.
References and Resources.

Meet the Author

Author Bio

Rae Pica

Rae Pica is the founder and director of Moving & Learning ( and has been a children's physical activity specialist since 1980. A former adjunct instructor with the University of New Hampshire, she is the author of 18 books, including the award-winning GREAT GAMES FOR YOUNG CHILDREN and JUMP INTO LITERACY. Rae is known for her lively and informative workshop and keynote presentations and has shared her expertise with such groups as the Sesame Street Research Department, the Head Start Bureau, Centers for Disease Control, the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, Nickelodeon's Blue's Clues, Gymboree, and state health departments throughout the country. Rae also served on the task force of the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) that created national guidelines for early childhood physical activity, and is a member of several advisory boards. In addition, Rae is cofounder of the BAM Radio Network ( and host of an Internet radio program called "Body, Mind and Child," for which she interviews experts in education, child development, play research, the neurosciences, and more. She also co-hosts, along with Jerlean Daniel, executive director of the National Association for the Education of Young Children, NAEYC Radio.