It’s OK Not to Share! 2014 Read Along (+ a Giveaway!)

read along sized

If you happened to read yesterday’s guest post from Heather Shumaker, I’m guessing you’re already hungry for more. And that’s great news, because you’re about to get  whole lot more!

Heather’s book, It’s OK Not to Share and Other Renegade Rules for Raising Competent and Compassionate Kids* will be the read along book for next year!  (*Affiliate link)

In addition to being a great writer, Heather’s got an amazing grasp on how kids learn, grow, and develop.  She’s done the research and the leg-work, but what I love best of all is that she knows it because she’s lived it.

As a child, she attended The School for Young Children in Ohio.  The influence went beyond her preschool years as her mother was also a teacher at the school and brought those principles home.  As a mom to two, Heather began looking for schools that espoused the same philosophy.  She found not only that a school like that was hard to come by, but that as a whole the tenor of early childhood environments had moved further away from the foundational beliefs of the school she loved.

So she set out to learn all she could about what made that school so special, and how its tenets could be applied in homes and schools everywhere.  The result is a fascinating book that is sure to spur some great discussion!

Oooh, discussion!  That’s part of what has me really excited about this book!  Heather has been generous enough to agree to not only answer your questions at the end of the read-along (as Ellen Galinsky so graciously did), but to be a part of a discussion on Google+ each month!  She and I will gather over there with another guest or two and we’ll chat about some of the concepts in that month’s “reading assignment”.  Along with our own impressions, I’d love to address some of the things that strike you as well, so please plan on adding your thoughts and questions to the comments section so that they can color the discussion we have with the author!

(You can follow me on G+ here.  Don’t worry if you’re new….so am I!  We’ll figure it out together!  And if G+ is just too much for you right now, the chats will be available on YouTube as well!)

My favorite part of the book’s introduction is when Heather recounts talking to a long time teacher at the School for Young Children about her project:

“When I first told Jan Waters the title of this book, she objected.  “But the ideas aren’t renegade!” she said.  “They’re not renegade or rebellious at all.”  “Well, they are unconventional,” I said.  “You’ll have to admit that.”  Jan was undeterred.  “They’re Good Old Solid Child Development Principles That Work,” she said.  “Make that the title of the book.”

Whether you want to call it renegade or solid practice, here are some of the “renegade rules” you can look forward to in this read along:

  • Don’t steal play.
  • It’s OK not to share.
  • All feelings are OK.  All Behavior isn’t.
  • Kids need conflict.
  • Paint off the paper.
  • Bombs, guns, and bad guys allowed.
  • Be buddies with dead birds.
  • Goof up.

The reading schedule will be posted in January, so I’m hoping that this announcement will give you plenty of time to chase down some copies of the book!  You can pick one up at Amazon, where they’re currently 25% off (affiliate link).


You could win one for free!

Heather Shumaker is sending a free copy to one NJC reader!  Just comment here and let us know why you’re excited for next year’s read along.  One comment will be selected at random and that reader will be getting one copy of the book mailed directly to him/her!  Selection will be made by Friday, December 13th at 10 PM MST. (Physical book limited to United States and Canada.  Ebook version provided for winner if overseas.)

I can’t wait!  How about you?

(*This giveaway is now closed, but we’d LOVE to have you join us for the read along next year!  Check back for details in January!)



Filed under Child Development & DAP, Uncategorized

75 Responses to It’s OK Not to Share! 2014 Read Along (+ a Giveaway!)

  1. katie

    I want to participate in this read along! Excited about the book, please put me on the drawing for a free copy. Thanks!

  2. GretchenP

    sound like great concepts! thanks for the giveaway! :)

  3. Robin

    I would like to participate in this read along. Thank you.

  4. Beth

    I was interested from the start, but hooked at “Bombs, guns, and bad guys allowed.” My 5 year old son has just started that kind of play and I’m conflicted as to whether it should be encouraged or not…looking forward to some thoughtful insight! Thanks for this great read along!!!

  5. I see adults forcing young children to share without realizing kids feelings and their legitimate right to hold on to what they consider “their own”. In a respectful way, I ask parents: would you share with me you car keys? I have found no one to answer yes to that question yet.
    That toy may be as important to your kid as your car is to you. Why do adults set on kids higher behavior standards than on their own? That is my big question regarding this issue. And I would love to read along with you next year!

  6. Mparker

    I am so excited to read this! As a mother of five with three boys who are all under five years in age and who love to turn every stick and toy into some sort of good guy bad guy game I am super curious about that point as well. We live in DC and the idea that they would even think of such things infuriates many. Look forward to it all!

  7. Carla Fitzgerald

    I can’t wait to read this. I believe children should be able to say no I don’t want to share and play guns. I teach 4 yr olds and in my district we had consultants tell us that when children ask for something the other child has to give it up. That idea really gets under my skin.

    • I would look at them and say “so if I ask for your car will you give it up?” I asked for it and you need to share… Same concept really. Good luck with that fight.

  8. I would soooo love to read along with this series! Somewhere in the name of good practice teachers have learned the wrong things and need to get back on track. I would love to use this with my teaching staff.

  9. Kristie

    Would love to participate in the read along! With the swing that early childhood is currently in, – hoping there are some ideas on how to explain to our preschooler’s parents (and other decision-makers) why these practicies are really “not so renegade” and just “Good Solid Child Development Principles” to quote Jan Waters (which I TOTALLY agree with, by the way). Thanks!

  10. Danielle

    I would love to participate in this read along as I need some guidance on raising three very independent, and physically active, young boys.

  11. Jennifer Bostwick

    This couldn’t come at a better time. I have two boys, 1 and 3. I struggle with what to do when the older grabs toys from the baby. Thanks for the opportunity.

  12. Leigh

    I would really enjoy this read along. Sounds like a book that would resonate with me.

  13. becky

    i look forward to reading new choice. Just beginning to get back into teaching after a three year break. Looking for inspiration.

  14. Amy

    I’m excited for next year’s read along because the ideas in this book seem like they may be inspiring as I face the preschool years with my son, who is already learning about playing bad guys at school, has trouble sharing at times, and needs to know that all feelings are okay, but behaviors are not. I love reading along with a group because the sharing of comments, ideas, and inspiration is always exciting and group dynamics are always fascinating. So looking forward to reading this book along with all of you! Thank you for a great giveaway!

  15. Hi- I am excited about the book because I just looked over Heather’s website and I really appreciate her point of view. I am excited to read more.

  16. Eilidh

    I’m excited as I read the advice yesterday on writing letters and tested in straight away with my 2.5 year old and 4 year old and it worked! Instant results! Thank you.

  17. Mel

    I’m most interested in learning about kids needing conflict. Thanks for the giveaway!

  18. Jen

    I am very excited for a read along of this book!

  19. Christine

    I would love to read along! I’ve read parts of the book (that I had time for!) and would love the chance to explore them more fully. Thanks!

  20. Sara

    I often feel like I’m unconventional anyway so bring it on! I LOVE learning about how to be a better parent so I look forward to this discussion!

  21. Wonderful to “meet” you all! Your thoughtful comments make me truly excited to share ideas and get to know you. Looking forward to our year together.

  22. I am really interested in your book – please put me in the draw for this special giveaway.

  23. Will definitely be buying or borrowing this one!

  24. Chris

    I would love to win this book! What awesome topics! All feelings are ok – all behavior is not sounds interesting. Often as educators we want all children to be happy and joyful instead of embracing the whole range of emotions.

  25. Emily

    I will definitely be reading along! This sounds like a book that will affirm many of my own parenting practices and help me view those choices in a new light–sometimes I feel I’m really going against the flow so it’s nice to have encouragement and info that backs me up!

  26. Mary Beth Galloway

    I have four boys and would love some insights into bombs, guns and bad guys…oh my! Some of that typical boy play is so foriegn to me and I know I totally overreact!

  27. I love to read (positive) parenting book! I a

    • I am looking forward to thinking of conventional parenting in an unconventional way. I also like to have a better understanding of children’s development and dialogue for my parenting toolbox.

  28. Sara Osterloh

    I would love to be in on the giveaway. As a mother of 3 mostly grown children, many of these ideas seem to follow with what I always felt was common sense and/or my instinct. I am now a preschool teacher, and I think it would be great to have some reminders of why I parented this way and why it is still good for preschoolers!

  29. I have been wanting to read this! I would LOVE to win a copy, but regardless I will be reading along!

  30. Maria

    As a mother, my opinion relative to my kids was: It’s not OK not to share! After I will read this book I hope to say, as a grandmother: Yes, it’s OK Not to share! Thanks

  31. AnneMarie

    My husband needs to read this Book!

  32. I am just getting started in the parenting chapter of my life and need all the ideas I can get. This sounds like a winner! Would love to read it.

  33. Holly

    i haven’t done a read along and would love to, this book sounds like one I would really enjoy and get a lot out of!

  34. Laura

    Thank you for the opportunity to win this book! I think the chapter about not sharing sounds so interesting. I’ve got a 3 y/o who has a 3 y/o cousin who lives nearby, and it’s a topic we’ve had to address. I’d love to see what the book has to say and be grounded in how to handle it before her baby sister gets to the toy sharing age.

  35. Christina

    Sounds like a great book. As a mom and a preschool teacher I look forward to reading it.

  36. Terry

    From a Buckeye (also a Mom, Grandma and Teacher) to a Buckeye….THESE are the principals that I grew up on! Be a rebel and drink from a garden hose for pete’s sake! Live life as a child. Experience wonder! I would love your book!

  37. Katie

    I need all the help I can get! :) I have a lot of little kids at home (5 kids, oldest is 5), and the philosophy you explain sounds in line with my goals. I’d love some help figuring out how to do it all better!

  38. Natalie

    I would love to participate in this read along & I can’t wait to check out more of what this site is all about

  39. Michelle C.

    Sounds like a really interesting and much needed read!

  40. Wow. I just happened upon this and am really intrigued. I’ll be adding this book to my ‘read soon’ list and following the blog. Thank you.

  41. Amy B.

    Super excited about this read-along! I’m an early-childhood-educator-turned-stay-at-home-mom, trying to raise my two-year-old son according to NAEYC standards (haha). I’ve had this book for a year now (my husband got it for me LAST Christmas!), and haven’t “found the time” to read through it. This is great motivation, obviously! If I happen to win this giveaway (I won’t, I have terrible luck!), I’ll be giving the new book to my dear friend who’s a mom to a three-year-old.

  42. Jon

    Sounds like a fun read along. I think I just found my first book of the year to read. Awesome!

  43. Jenn A

    This sounds like an amazingly inspiring book! I love the “renegade rules” already and can’t wait to learn more. Thanks for the opportunity to win!

  44. This sounds like a great book! Although I almost never win anything, please put me in for the free book drawing, and I’ll keep my fingers crossed. ;)

  45. katherine

    this sounds great! would love to win!

  46. cindy

    i would love to participate. I am a teacher and trying to keep developmentally appropriate practice at the heart of both parenting and teaching.

  47. Anna

    I’d love to join the read-along. What a great idea to make a book interactive!

  48. Santana

    Sign me up for the drawing! I would love to have a chance to participate!

  49. Carola

    Would love to win the copy! Sounds like there would be really helpful tips on how to raise my active little boy!

  50. Tobiann

    I agree with all those points 100%!! I’ve never participated in a read along, but I am getting in on this one! It will be very nice to see what other moms outside of my comfort zone have to say. :) And having the opportunity to win the book is a nice added bonus! VERY excited to read this!

  51. Rachel

    This is great timing. My almost 4 year old daughter is suddenly very interested in bad guys and guns. She’s learning about it from friends and cousins and I’m not a big fan. I’d love hearing ideas and insights on the topic.

  52. Susan

    Looking forward to next year’s read-along! Can’t wait to read the discussion about the new book.

  53. Sev

    Hi! My own mother had some ‘unconventional’ practices if her own and I’m trying to figure out how I can be the best parent I can (just like everybody else, I’m sure). This book sounds great!

  54. I spent this year reading one parenting book per month and I need a new book to kick off the new year!

  55. Lindsay

    I am one of those mothers who lets her kids get dirty, examine animals we find in our yard and this book sounds amazing! We all need to go renegade once in awhile I would LOVE a copy. Thank you!

  56. LisaG

    Just ordered the book because I’m going to have some time to read next week and don’t want to wait. Looking forward to some great information and interesting discussion.

  57. Bethany

    I am living my lifelong dream as the mother of two young children, and I would like to raise them in such a way that they have the tools they need as children and one day, as adults (please time, don’t pass too quickly!) This book looks fascinating, and I am really looking forward to the discussion!

  58. Karla

    This is very interesting! I can’t wait to dive in!

  59. Heidi wolf

    So excited for this read along!!!! Thankyou!

  60. Kate

    I was wondering what you thought of this book when you mentioned it was on your nightstand… it sounds like a great resource. My oldest is now entering the world of “guns, bombs and bad guys”. It makes me uncomfortable, but I know it’s part of growing up. I would love some perspective on it.

  61. Becca

    That is so true. I don’t want to force my kids to just give up something just because somebody asks for it but I want them to make good conscious decisions. How do i teach my 3 kids to play nice, but not to just roll over and hand over their things? Sounds like I could really benefit from reading this book. Sign me up for the drawing!
    P.s. I really love your ebook amanda! Thank you for making it so affordable!

  62. As an early childhood educator, I am constantly reading on how to best support children through learning, play, and social/emotional development. This sounds right up my alley!

  63. How do you participate in the read-along? I don’t need the book; I already own the Kindle version and finished reading it a few weeks ago. Just looking forward to discussing these ideas!

    • notjustcute

      So glad you’ve read it, Heike! So in early January I’ll post a printable schedule showing the reading/discussion schedule. Each month or so we’ll all read the section and I’ll write something up in a post. I’d love for everyone to comment and discuss there, and then Heather and I and a guest will discuss the section in a video chat and incorporate some of the ideas shared in the comments section as well. That’s what I have planned for now — we’ll see where it evolves from there! :0)

  64. Jeanine Sandall

    Wow – the school Heather attended sounds great. Thanks for the opportunity to enter a draw to receive a copy of what sounds like an essential book for anyone who lives with or works with children.

  65. Pingback: New Discoveries and Read Along | Starlighting Mama

  66. Nicola

    Can’t wait to read this. Especially seeing the bullet be buddies with dead birds, can’t wait to find out more on that.

  67. Elizabeth

    Excited to read this book again and learn more from Heather!

  68. Tina

    I’ve seen this book but haven’t read it because the titled seemed obvious–of course it’s ok not to share. We talk about taking turns and learning how to say “I want a turn when you are done.” However, the table of contents looks really interested and I’m curious to follow the read-along.

  69. Christy

    I’m in. Enter me please.

  70. Kerry

    Book sounds great sign me up

  71. So looking forward to reading along with you, Amanda :)

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