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Literacy Leadership in Early Childhood: The Essential Guide.

LITERACY LEADERSHIP IN EARLY CHILDHOOD: The Essential Guide. Dorothy S. Strickland & Shannon Riley-Ayers. New York: Teachers College Press, 2007. 113 pp. Paperback, $18.95. The development of pre- and early literacy skills in early childhood settings is heralded as one of the most important factors for literacy success in elementary school. Administrators, curriculum directors, and teachers are held accountable for literacy learning in ways that mirror K-3 public school standards and practices across the United States. Already busy and over-burdened leaders find themselves needing succinct and relevant currency in theory and practice to effectively identify, develop, and assess their programs. This timely guide serves as an accessible resource for administrators and teachers in preschool and pre-kindergarten settings. For example, the chapter on home-school connections contains a checklist of statements about language and literacy development for parents to consider and discuss at school-sponsored family literacy workshops.

Together, Dorothy Strickland and Shannon Riley-Ayers have created a valuable resource based on years of pertinent experience as professors and reading consultants in the field of literacy development. Among her professional accomplishments, Strickland has authored numerous books, including Improving Reading Achievement Through Professional Development and Beginning Reading and Writing. Riley-Ayers developed and implemented an early literacy initiative and also co-authored the policy brief Early Literacy: Policy and Practice in the Preschool Years with Strickland.

This nine-chapter guide examines a range of distinctive topics, such as administrative challenges, child development, early literacy standards, curriculum development, best practices, accountability and assessment, professional development, home-school connections, and the role of early childhood leaders as advocates for children, and makes policy recommendations. Chapters contain easily understood theoretical concepts and implications, along with applications based on user-friendly assessments, self-reflection assignments, and tools for practical application. The book includes an appendix of resources, a glossary, references, and an index. Administrators and teachers will want to keep this essential guide, which is a part of the Language and Literacy Series, Practitioner's Bookshelf, at their fingertips. Reviewed by Nancy Brashear, Professor, Department of English, Azusa Pacific University, Azusa, CA.

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Author:Brashear, Nancy
Publication:Childhood Education
Article Type:Book review
Date:Mar 22, 2009
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