Vivian Paley

Vivian Gussin Paley was an inspiring teacher, a brilliant colleague, and a generous friend. Her foreword to my first book, The Good Preschool Teacher, is a small masterpiece. She died at age 90 on July 26, and my brother Rick Ayers, another inspiring teacher and teacher educator, wrote this to his students: “Vivian Paley was a great teacher-writer whose books made the thoughts and lives of young children visible. Let’s hope a new generation of teachers will follow her example and stay in the classroom and write, write, write. All teachers of students of all ages should read her great manifesto against exclusion, “You Can’t Say You Can’t Play,” and her subtle exploration of race in “The Girl With the Brown Crayon.” In “White Teacher” she was quite early in looking at the way white teachers are reluctant/awkward to talk about race. “Molly is Three” is an exploration of the vivid and fantastic logic in the mind of a three-year-old. Her motto, “What we value we talk about,” is one of the most provocative and valuable pieces of advice for apprentice teachers.”

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: