Defending the Early Years
At NAEYC’s annual conference in Dallas, Geralyn Bywater McLaughlin and Blakely Bundy from DEY are excited to be presenting the session, Defending the Early Years' toolkit: Resources to help you advocate for appropriate practices for young children.
In today's world, many factors are contributing to the disturbing trend of inappropriate early childhood education. Federal, state, and local policies often contribute to the push-down of academics in early childhood classrooms. Also, there are more and more early childhood classrooms that have been added to public schools, where the administration may or may not have an early childhood background. This does not always bode well for young children. We know that development in the early childhood years is unique - and healthy, positive development is critical.
It is vital for early childhood educators to understand their important role in speaking and acting on behalf of young children. In this session, participants will find out how early childhood educators can and should use their expertise and their voices to advocate for developmentally appropriate practices in their schools, their communities, and nationwide.
At this session, we will introduce our newly launched online ToolKit for Early Childhood Activists. This free ToolKit was developed in response to a need we identified at our session at last year's NAEYC Annual Conference and is a new advocacy resource for the field.
Participants will take home a range of concrete ideas for using their own voice to become a more effective activist and a stronger advocate for developmentally appropriate practice - in the current climate of academic push-down and inappropriate practices brought about through misguided education reform. It will be an excellent opportunity to connect and network with other activists and budding-activists.
Update from CCFC
by Susan Linn
Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood has had a fantastic year. We’ve expanded our staff to include a position devoted to reducing children’s screen time and are working with The National WIC Association, the National Black Child Development Institute, and the CUNY’s Early Childhood Professional Development Institute to help them incorporate reducing screen time messages into their policies and practices. We are working with Greenpeace to convince Lego to stop their egregious co-branding partnership with Shell Oil. And speaking of egregious co-branding partnerships, we launched a campaign to call out Mattel and the Girl Scouts for their $2 million partnership to promote Barbie. See our website http://commercialfreechildhood.org/action to learn more.
CCFC is also looking forward to NAEYC, where we’re going to focus on the importance of reducing screen time, promoting play, and limiting children’s exposure to screen time. Dr. Susan Linn, CCFC’s Executive Director, will be presenting on Nurturing Play, Creativity, and Learning in the 21st Century: New Challenges for Early Childhood and How to Meet Them and participating in a panel on The Play Imperative: Why do all children need play for learning and success in school? Sara Adelman, CCFC’s Screen Time Program Manager will be presenting Parents, Screen Time, and You: How early childhood professionals can help families make informed decisions about children’s media use at home. And please visit us at booth #942, which we’re sharing with The Alliance for Childhood.