The heart of the matter;Reviews;Books

22nd October 1999 at 01:00
BUILDING BLOCKS FOR GLOBAL LEARNING IN THE EARLY YEARS. Edited by Ben Ballin and Helen Griffin. Global Education Derby. pound;6.50 including postage from 88 Abbey Street, Derby DE22 3SQ.

Annabelle Dixon on two books that aim to promote an understanding of human relationships and community in the very young

This book is the fruit of the year-long Foundations for Learning project and the conference that was based on it.

Its wide range of authors each had a particular contribution to the project or the conference. While that may sound like the recipe for a muddled compendium, the book has been skilfully edited and hangs together with remarkable and encouraging coherence.

This is because all concerned accept, and wish to promote, certain principles basic to global learningcitizenship and the recognition, and as editor Helen Griffin puts it, that "we are all valuable enough to spend time on".

There is also an agreed acknowledgement that the nature of human relationships has to be worked on if we want a fair and peaceful world, and the place to start is in the early years.

The book is divided into four parts: Ourselves, Others, We are in the world and The learning environment. Other issues, based on the writers' experiences, include a curriculum for global citizenship, involving parents and changing the school culture. Careful layout, a useful resource list and clear thinking should recommend this book to any infant or first school planning its citizenship curriculum.

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