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Learning Theories for Early Years Practice


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Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction Part 1: Early Influences Chapter 2: John Locke and the Emergence of Empiricism Chapter 3: Jean-Jacques Rousseau and the Concept of `Child' Chapter 4: Johann Pestalozzi and the Importance of Nature Chapter 5: Friederich Froebel and the Importance of Play Chapter 6: Rachel and Margaret McMillan and Social Reform Chapter 7: Sigmund Freud and the Psychodynamic Tradition Chapter 8: Rudolf Steiner and the Changing Needs of Children Chapter 9: Maria Montessori: The Environment and Learning Part 2: Modern Influences Chapter 10: John Dewey and Child-Centred Education Chapter 11: Burrhus Skinner and the Behaviourists Chapter 12: Jean Piaget: An Enduring Legacy Chapter 13: Lev Vygotsky: Learning and Social Constructivism Chapter 14: Albert Bandura and Social Learning Theory Chapter 15: Urie Bronfenbrenner and Learning in Context Chapter 16: Jerome Bruner and Constructivism Chapter 17: Howard Gardner and Theories of Multiple Intelligence Chapter 18: Reuven Feuerstein and Instrumental Enrichment Chapter 19; Nel Noddings and the Ethics of Care Chapter 20: Te Whariki Chapter 21: Loris Malaguzzi and Reggio Emilia Part 3: Challenges for Theorists in a Changing World Chapter 22: The Realities of Childhood Today Chapter 23: Emotional Intelligence Chapter 24: How Children Play Chapter 25: Forest Schools Chapter 26: Learning and the Brain Chapter 27: The Emergence of Digital Learning

About the Author

Sean MacBlain PhD is a distinguished author and academic whose publications include: MacBlain (Sage, 2014) How Children Learn; Gray and MacBlain (Sage, 2015) Learning Theories in Childhood, now going into its 3rd edition; MacBlain, Long and Dunn, (Sage, 2015) Dyslexia, Literacy and Inclusion: Child-centred Perspectives; MacBlain, Dunn and Luke (Sage, 2017) Contemporary Childhood. A number of Sean's publications are used by students, academics and practitioners worldwide. Sean is currently a senior academic at Plymouth Marjon University where he previously held the positions of Research Lead for the Centre for Professional and Educational Research, Research Coordinator for the School of Education and Deputy Chair of the Ethics Committee. Sean also worked previously as a Senior Lecturer in Education and Developmental Psychology at Stranmillis University College, Queens University Belfast. In addition to this, Sean has also worked for over twenty years as an educational psychologist and continues in this field as an independent practitioner. Sean is married to Angela and lives in Somerset, England. Sean MacBlain will be discussing key ideas from Contemporary Childhood in the SAGE Early Years Masterclass, a free professional development experience hosted by Kathy Brodie. To sign up, or for more information, click here.


In this book Dr Sean MacBlain has expertly summarised each theorist, from the classics right up to the modern day. By putting each theory into historical and social context, the reader can really understand the significance of each child development theory, as well as its relevance to current practice.

The additional information, such as strengths and weaknesses, case studies and comparison to other theories will be incredibly valuable for students. The instructive and beautiful illustrations make this a visually engaging book, creating an essential text for Early Years practitioners.

-- Kathy Brodie

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