A Child's Work


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About the Author

Vivian Gussin Paley, a kindergarten and nursery school teacher for thirty-seven years, primarily at the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools, has received numerous awards and accolades, including a MacArthur Award and, most recently, the John Dewey Society's Outstanding Achievement Award. She is the author of eleven books, three of which are published by the University of Chicago Press.


"This irresistible book is Vivian Gussin Paley at her very best.... Paley's defence of fantasy play is fuelled by urgency and a passionate interest in children and everything they do.... [A Child's Work also includes] story after powerful story from Paley's magnificent anthology of the imagination, all collected from 'natural born storytellers who create their own dramatic literature.' The case she makes is convincing because, in generous moves of self-analysis, she shows us her own learning, her own coming to understand." - Mary Jane Drummond, Times Education Supplement; "America's children have in Vivian Gussin Paley an extraordinarily knowing and thoughtful observer - indeed, a resourceful teacher who has so much to tell us about how our country's young people live, learn, grow, in mind, heart and spirit. Here is a book brimming with brave wisdom that will help us parents and teachers understand how our sons and daughters, our students come to terms with life through their minds' activity." - Robert Coles author of The Moral Intelligence of Children; "Paley does children a great service by reminding us of the enormous value of fantasy play." - San Francisco Ghronicle Book Review"

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