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The purpose of this book is to provide educators with a friendly introduction to some current ideas from research on child development and education for improving practices in the early school years. These years provide “windows of opportunity” for children to develop attitudes, learning approaches, and competencies essential for their future well-being and achievement in school. In the past two decades, educational and developmental psychologists and others have made great strides in understanding how to launch children onto positive developmental pathways through school (see topic areas in Figure 0.1). We also know more about how to help steer children away from negative pathways. We would like to share these insights with teachers and other child professionals because of the critical role that they play ...

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