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A Child's Place: A Year in the Life of a Day Care Center Hardcover – June, 1992

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Shell (journalism, Boston Univ.) here profiles the Cambridgeport Children's Center, a multicultural, community-based day care center in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Her focus is an experienced teacher named Molly and three representative families: a middle-class family with two daughters, a Haitian immigrant couple with American-born children, and a single mother and her son. The result is a highly readable, deeply informative account of the status of day care in the United States. She assesses the problems, dynamics, emotions, and politics of child care as they are played out on the local, state, and national policy making levels. Around the framework of daily life at the center, the author weaves moving details about family and teacher concerns along with considerable information on the many complex day care issues. Thoroughly researched and gracefully written, this is an important book.
- Hilma F. Cooper, Cheltenham Township Libs., Pa.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kirkus Reviews

Close-up look at Cambridgeport Children's Center, a.k.a. Tot Lot, a community-based, multicultural day-care center in an ethnically and economically diverse neighborhood of Cambridge, Mass. Shell (Journalism/Boston Univ.) creates Tot Lot's portrait by observing and meticulously recording minute details about children, parents, and teachers. Here, she concentrates on three families: a poor Haitian one whose lives are centered on their commitment as Jehovah's Witnesses; a middle-class couple with two careers, two daughters, and a pretty good sense of how to make the system work; and a single working mother and her son. We learn a great deal about their daily lives--what they eat, what they wear, what they do, what they think about--and how they came to be where they are now. Shell provides the same kind of detail about one longtime teacher at the center, rather less about the school's frazzled director, and considerably less about other teachers, who tend to come and go. A high turnover-rate is but one of Tot Lot's problems, for it has teetered on the edge of financial disaster throughout its existence, and there is no assurance that it will survive. Shell tries to place Tot Lot in perspective by including information on the history of child care, differing philosophical approaches to early childhood education, other social agencies concerned with child welfare, and the impact of legislation and budget cuts. Overly detailed but informative--and disturbing in its implications about the economic viability of the day-care system. -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 264 pages
  • Publisher: Little Brown & Co (T); 1st edition (June 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316783765
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316783767
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.5 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,711,796 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was searching for a different book by the same author and saw this one. I am a HS teacher, but although it is about a day care, the topics are relevant for anyone who takes care of or teaches other peoples children. The book was in perfect condition.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very interesting. I first read this when I worked in a pre-school myself, and it remains the only book I've ever read about early childhood education which really nails what it's like to work in one, the good and the bad.
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