«  View All Posts

Books for Creative Curriculum Approaches

July 1st, 2022 | 2 min. read

By Lisa Williford

Looking for an innovative and developmentally appropriate curriculum for your early childhood classroom that helps children develop a love for learning? In this list, you will find creative curriculum approaches that maximize learning by harnessing natural curiosity through hands-on exploration and play, allowing children to dive deeper into their own developing interests.



Playful Activities for Reading Readiness:

Laying a Foundation for Literacy

Children learn best through play. Playful Activities for Reading Readiness offers purposeful, play-based activities to develop the foundational literacy and language skills young children need to succeed in school.

Learn More



Naturally Inclusive:

Engaging Children of All Abilities Outdoors

Young children with special needs often face physical, emotional, or social barriers to deep engagement with the natural world. These challenges need not prevent them from enjoying the many benefits nature has to offer. Naturally Inclusive is an essential guide for creating inclusive nature-based play spaces and programs that connect every child to nature. It reminds us that nature is both an exemplar of diversity and a catalyst for inclusion.

Learn More



Loose Parts Learning in K-3 Classrooms

Loose Parts. You have heard the term, probably in the context of promoting engaging play with open-ended, natural, and manufactured materials that can be manipulated with limitless possibilities. In this book, discover how a loose-parts mindset promotes active learning in the early elementary classroom, enhancing curriculum and ensuring connection to state standards.  

Learn More



Making Space for Preschool Makerspaces

What can you add to your early childhood classroom that will immerse children in rich learning, reduce challenging behaviors, and develop confidence as well as critical thinking and problem-solving skills? A makerspace! Filled with colorful photographs taken in real early childhood settings, this book will guide you step-by-step in making a makerspace that invites young children to boldly explore materials and create something only they can imagine.

Learn More



Building on Emergent Curriculum

The Power of Play for School Readiness

Building on Emergent Curriculum shows early childhood educators how to create profound learning experiences through developmentally appropriate activities and play. This book explains why traditional theme-based units don't work, and gives practical strategies for balancing thematic and open-ended activities, choosing themes that matter to children, and using open-ended materials and conversations to promote school readiness.

Learn More



Provoking Curiosity

Student-Led STEAM Learning for Pre-K to Third Grade

Provoking Curiosity is based on the premise that young children need more than step-by-step instructions and activities to learn—they need to think, explore, and wonder on their own. But how do you facilitate this in a real classroom with real children? In this book, Dr. Angela Eckhoff shows you how to use STEAM provocations throughout your busy day to build higher-level thinking skills while also building collaboration and communication skills. 

Learn More



Picturing the Project Approach

Creative Explorations in Early Learning

This book guides teachers in implementing a project approach to learning, from identifying a topic and developing a project, to bringing the project to a close. This book also explains why the project approach allows children to delve into their own interests, gaining academic knowledge and real-world skills along the way. 

Learn More



Planning for Play

Strategies for Guiding Preschool Learning

Planning for Play helps educators understand the different types of play and the rich opportunities offered through carefully planned time and environments designed for valuable pre-K play experiences. Learn how to get the most out of the play in your classroom.

Learn More



The Possibilities of Play

Imaginative Learning Centers for Children

Dr. Jean, beloved author of dozens of books and songs, and coauthor Carolyn Kisloski bring you a collection of practical ideas and tips to inspire engagement and spark learning in your classroom centers—and, importantly, keep children coming back for more. Discover how you can help your children thrive in learning centers.

Learn More


Author(s)Tricia Rosengarten, Suzanne Goldstein, Carla Gull, Ruth Wilson, Latisha Hayes, Cathryn Peshlakai, Sarah Wright, Teresa A. Byington, PhD, Robin Marx-Mackerley, Kristen Kemple, Carolyn Kisloski, Jean Feldman, Carmen Castillo, Yvonne Kogan, Sylvia C. Chard, Angela Eckhoff, PhD, Sarah Taylor Vanover, EdD

Lisa Williford

Lisa Williford, an experienced marketing event coordinator, served with Kaplan Early Learning Company and Gryphon House from 2020 - 2023.