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Kids First: Five Big Ideas for Transforming Children's Lives and America's Future Hardcover – Bargain Price, March 1, 2011


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: PublicAffairs; 1 edition (March 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 158648947X
  • ASIN: B005CDUOLK
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.7 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,118,991 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Kirkus
“An important, well-researched wake-up call, and any part of it that educators and lawmakers take into account is worthwhile”

Diane Ravitch, Author of The Death and Life of the Great American School System
“David Kirp’s book could change the policy debate about how to improve the lives of children. It’s smart, sharp, and clear about what we need to do to lift the kids who need help the most.”

Robert B. Reich, Former U.S. Secretary of Labor and Chancellor’s Professor Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley
“In an era when answers to America’s myriad social problems seem dismally remote, David Kirp comes to the rescue with important ideas for giving our kids better lives. Kirp thinks big, writes beautifully, and compels our attention. His agenda is practical and necessary. And if America’s children had any political clout, they’d demand it.”

Edward Zigler, Sterling Professor of Psychology, Emeritus, Yale University
“David Kirp is a leading scholar who in this book provides us with a knowledge-based, cradle-to-college agenda that merits the attention of every parent and policymaker in America.”

Randi Weingarten
"Kids Firstis an eye-opener, a Lasik-like procedure to cure the tunnel vision that afflicts many of those who fancy themselves education experts. Kirp shines a light on what we need to do outside of schools even as we seek to redesign our schools to prepare students to succeed in today's fast-changing world."

Kirkus, January 15, 2011
“An important, well-researched wake-up call, and any part of it that educators and lawmakers take into account is worthwhile.” 

About the Author

David L. Kirp is a professor at the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley. He taught at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and was founding director of the Harvard Center on Law and Education. He recently served on President Obama's transition team. His most recent books areThe Sandbox Investment: The Preschool Movement and Kids-First PoliticsandShakespeare, Einstein, and the Bottom Line: The Marketing of Higher Education.

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Customer Reviews

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It's about time someone wrote a book like this!
Mark - North Dakota
I would hope that many of our polticians would read this book and pay heed to what needs to be done.
Doctor Doctor
This books provides some insight into how to cure the causes of income inequality in our society.
Tom Hornaday

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Corey B. Bower on February 18, 2012
Format: Hardcover
In the book, Kirp lays out five "big ideas" for changing children's lives for the better -- from "crib to college". The book originates from his experiences while serving on the Presidential Transition Team in 2008, during which time he met with representatives from countless youth-related organizations. The experience left him with two distinct impressions: 1.) a lot of people are doing a lot of different things to help children; 2.) most of them don't coordinate with similarly motivated groups attacking the problem in different ways. His five big ideas are his attempt to unify the agendas of all of these organizations and point the our country toward better serving the needs of youth with an array of services offered throughout their development. These five ideas are:

teaching parents to teach their kids - The much-discussed nurse-family partnership serves as a prime example of a program in which parents are offered assistance with childrearing.

delivering brainy education to tots - The Perry Preschool Project and Abcedarian Project are discussed along with a few other select successful educational early childhood initiatives.

creating academies of learning and life - The discussion revolves around the Harlem Children's Zone and the Children's Aid Society schools are as examples of "community schools" -- schools that incorporate various other community services along with their academics.

the kindness of strangers - Mentoring programs like Big Brothers, Big Sisters and others are discussed.

the universal piggy bank - "Baby bonds" in Maine, the UK, and elsewhere are part of a discussion of starting all kids with savings accounts for college upon birth (and possibly matching contributions to those accounts).
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mark - North Dakota on June 11, 2011
Format: Hardcover
It's about time someone wrote a book like this! Kirp hits the nail right on the head in proposing that the better we treat kids, the better our country will ultimately be. He highlights several common-sense, effective programs and proposes easy ways that we, as a country and a society, can set kids up for success by giving them what they need while they're in the most crucial, impressionable, malleable stages of life. Bravo, Mr. Kirp!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The book is well written and makes a strong and correct argument for what we need to do for children. He does a good job of using his insights into the needs of children and his attention to research that provides support for his stance. I would hope that many of our polticians would read this book and pay heed to what needs to be done. They all say that children are our future, but as Kirp points out they do not follow up with the needed action.
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By Tom Hornaday on April 7, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This books provides some insight into how to cure the causes of income inequality in our society. Those who believe income redistribution is the answer will find a deeper course of action which can provide greater self confidence, esteem, and sense of meaning which can enable children to grow up to be caring and productive citizens.
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By Kalika Yap on July 29, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Kids First presents five key compelling thoughtful ideas that need traction and consistent implementation. We need to go beyond the theory to integration.
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