Today’s featured “Eyre Book” will come as no surprise to visitors to this website, because it is the book that started it all–that became the basis of Joy School, and that caused the Eyres to shift from their management and music careers and become full-time writers and speakers.
A preschooler’s absorbent mind can learn just about anything, so the question is, what to teach them. Many parents opt for early academics, but studies show that this may make them bored when they start school and that other kids will catch up by age 7 or 8. A better option is to let kids have a real childhood, free from the school pressure that will come soon enough. The thing to focus on with preschoolers is the emotional and social skills or “Joys” that will make them happy people.
The Eyre’s eighth book, Teaching Children Joy, came about in resistance to all of the pushy, early-academics preschools that they encountered while living in suburban Washington DC. In the book they break Joy down into 12 separate “Joys,” three that are physical, like the Joy of the Body and the Joy of the Earth, three that are mental like the Joy of Imagination and Creativity and the Joy of Order and Goal-Striving, three that are emotional like the Joy of Family Identity, and the Joy of Individual Confidence and Uniqueness, and three that are social, like the joy of Communication and Relationships and the Joy of Sharing and Service.
The book became a best-seller, was translated into a dozen languages, and spawned Joy Schools, a do-it-yourself preschool that has now been practiced by more than 200,000 families.
Hear the Eyres tell the personal story of how the book came about and get the whole book for free online: