Child Development Pay It Forward Update

January 10, 2016

Child Development Pay It Forward Update

After distributing the 12 original books I purchased for the Child Development Pay If Forward Project I was asked to consider giving each member of the Teton County School Board and Key Administrators a copy of What If Everybody Understood Child Development?: Straight Talk About Bettering Education and Children’s Lives.  I even received some contributions for the additional books.  Here is the note I sent to the School Board….

Dear Teton County School Board,

         This fall I had the pleasure of reading and participating in an online book study focused on the book What If Everybody Understood Child Development?: Straight Talk About Bettering Education and Children’s Lives by Rae Pica.  This thought provoking book is made up of 29 research based essays critical to child development and educational best practice.  It keeps children and the connection between how they develop and how they learn to reach their full potential as its focus. The information and ideas within the book are topics that must be considered as educational policies and practices are developed both at the national and local level.
          During my ongoing interaction in the book study with experts from across the country, it occurred to me that I needed to share this book with other parents and educational colleagues in my community.  After some thought on how to put the book in the hands of others, I launched the Child Development Pay It Forward Project in early December 2015.   In a nutshell I ordered a dozen copies of Rae Pica’s book and gave them away, asking each participant to read the book and then pass it on to someone else.  Although I have focused locally, the project has received some national attention and has been supported by the publisher.
          After sharing the book with the original participants of the Child Development Pay It Forward Project, including several teachers at Wilson Elementary where my daughter is in 4th grade, it was suggested to me that I share the book with the Teton County School District Administration and interested TCSD School Board members.  I have recently received more books and plan to give both Gillian Chapman, TCSD Superintendent and Tracy Poduska, TCSD Director of Teaching and Learning, a copy to read this week.  I would also like to invite, and strongly suggest, each Teton County School Board member read the book and participate in the project.  I am available to attend either the January 6, 2016 board meeting or the January 11, 2016 workshop to provide you each with a copy of the book.  Please let me know which meeting would be best for me to attend.
          In a world where we are racing to the top, using a common core, starting smart, and leaving no one behind, we must always be focused on research and best practice to develop the programs, curriculum, and policies that support the education of our children.  As we prepare them to become contributing members of adult society, we must remain mindful they are children.  It is my hope as the administrators and school board members who are diligently working to provide the children and families of Teton County, WY with the best possible education available, Rae Pica’s, What If Everybody Understood Child Development?: Straight Talk About Bettering Education and Children’s Lives will provide inspiration during tough deliberation and decision making.
          Thank you for being dedicated to and advocating for the children and families of Teton County, WY.  I look forward to hearing from your representative soon.
Betsy Carlin
EC Consulting
Facilitating Leadership in the Field of Early Childhood


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