Kindergarten has changed, and not necessarily for the better. Once a joyful time when children grow into school gradually, today it often resembles a watered-down first grade, where academic pressures squelch creativity and play. The Literate Kindergarten shows how carefully balancing academics with song, movement, talk, and play creates an environment where every child can grow and learn.

Sue Kempton is a master teacher, and in The Literate Kindergarten, she shares the thinking, the structures, even the precise language she uses to help young children become motivated, engaged, and joyful learners. Kempton guides you through the three domains of learning on which she bases her lessons and actions: the cognitive, creative, and emotional.

With this framework in mind, Kempton offers clues to interpreting children’s talk and body language so that you know which domain they are engaged in, as well as specific questions and phrases that draw out their thinking and make learning visible.

From there, The Literate Kindergarten offers effective suggestions for:

  • establishing routines and creating cooperation
  • developing oral language
  • modeling the language of thinking
  • teaching across content areas
  • supporting students as they become socialized to school
  • recognizing the vital importance of integrating music, movement, and play
  • familiarizing children with concepts of print, comprehension strategies, and other important literacy habits.
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