Kristen M. Kemple, PhD, is a professor of early childhood studies at the University of Florida. She serves on the consulting editors board for NAEYC and is an active presenter at major national conferences. She previously worked as a teacher in Head Start, as well as in a variety of other early childhood programs. She has been an early childhood teacher educator for 30 years and has been fascinated by play since she was an infant. She is a founding faculty member of the Unified Early Childhood Proteach Program at the University of Florida, begun in 1992 as one of the first cross-departmental inclusive teacher education programs in the United States. She is the author of a wide variety of publications on early childhood development and education. Her current scholarship is focused on play, creativity, and social-emotional learning in early childhood.