Men Who Teach Young Children

An international perspective

Paperback / softback, 172 pages, 234 mm x 156 mm
15 Jun 2014
Trentham Books

Price: £24.99

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Few men around the world work in day-care settings, nursery schools or kindergartens. Yet wherever they are found, men who are perceived to have crossed the gender boundary in their choice of profession are widely acclaimed as gifted educators and excellent caregivers. Policy makers who care about providing quality education for young children need to understand what attracts men to work with young children and how to retain them in the workforce so they can make the most of this underutilized human resource in early childhood education.

This book fills a research gap, presenting the biographies of six talented men from Britain, Norway, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Israel and the United States who have all been working with the youngest children for many years. A cultural lens is used to understand their motivation and reveal the difficulties they faced in choosing the profession, getting trained, working with young children and their parents, and opting to remain in the field.

This book is a must for early childhood leaders who are interested in moving towards gender equality in the workforce. To those responsible for teacher training programs it will help them empathize with the men they have recruited, and to learn how to make them feel more comfortable in their programmes. Supervisors of men in the early childhood workforce will broaden their perspectives on the work lives of these minority employees, and will learn how to support their becoming part of a team consisting largely of women educators. The most significant contribution of this book is the window it gives to readers about men’s unique contribution to the care and education of young children around the world.

  • David Brody

    David Brody is chair of the Early Childhood Department and Academic Dean of the Efrata College of Education in Jerusalem, Israel. He taught in day-care settings, preschools, and kindergartens for 17 years before his academic career in training others in the profession.

CONTENTS: Foreword by Tim Rohrmann; 1. Knocking at the door; 2. Aims and research methods; 3. Benny Haidlauf – Basel, Switzerland; 4. Elton Kikuta – Oregon, United States; 5. Levien Nieuwenhuis – Zeist, The Netherlands; 6. Eli Kruk – Judean Hills, Israel; 7. Leon Mahon – East London, United Kingdom; 8. Reidar Eliassen – Olso, Norway; 9. Looking inward – looking outward; Appendix 1: Demographic data on the six teachers; Appendix 2: Prompt for interviews with teachers; Appendix 3: Supervisor interview prompts; Appendix 4: Early childhood groupings in different countries; References; Index.

'... achieves what the author sets out to do. It provides a rich and deep description of the working lives of six male educators from diverse cultures and societies with varying views on the role and acceptance of men working with young children. ... captures the dilemma facing men in Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) where it is known that touch and caring are necessary parts of young children’s social emotional growth ... the argument the author provides for acceptance and encouragement of men in ECEC is a sound and compelling one.'

Martyn Mills-Bayne, University of South Australia, British Journal of Educational Studies, Issue 63, Vol 3, pages 415-417

David Brody has written a well-researched book presented in an engaging manner. He tells powerful stories of men caring and teaching, that you, the reader will enjoy reading and connecting with. The depth and quality of his interaction with his subjects and his observation in the classrooms are translated into valuable insights for nurture. This book will serve not only those interested in men teaching but also those interested in how teachers, in general, provide quality education, care and nurture for young children. It is an excellent foundation and model for future study of further cultures. I have high hopes for future inclusion of perspectives from other continents.

Bryan G. Nelson, Founder and Director of

His research delivers much more than vignettes of men at work. It clearly makes the case that if young children are to thrive, as the research of the past fifty years has promised, it will be because the field itself shrugs off narrow dictums about what young children are capable of learning.

Frances Rust, University of Pennsylvania, Graduate School of Education