Chapter 3: Creating Spaces and Places for Young Children and Families

Chapter 3A new picture of childhood and human nature emerges from the research of the past decade. Far from being mere unfi nished adults, babies and young children are exquisitely designed by evolution to change and create, to learn and explore. Those capacities, so intrinsic to what it means to be human, appear in their purest forms in the earliest years of our lives. Our most valuable human accomplishments are possible because we were once helpless dependent children, not in spite of it. Childhood, and caregiving, is fundamental to our humanity.1

Alison Gopnik,
The Philosophical Baby

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