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Child's Creativity

September 17, 1987|ROSELLE M. LEWIS

Your Child's Growing Mind: A Parent's Guide to Learning From Birth to Adolescence by Jane M. Healy (Doubleday: $16.95).

When Jane M. Healy, a teacher specializing in learning disabilities, speaks to groups about creativity in children, she wears a clumsy necklace made by her son at age 8. It symbolizes for her the "special muse of creativity that awaits discovery in the quiet corner of children's minds."

The success of this exciting guide flows from Healy's belief that learning takes place best in a supportive, nurturing atmosphere, where the quest is for questioning, not necessarily definite answers.

Informative and often humorous in her examples (yes, kids continue to say the darndest "telling" things), Healy, nevertheless, writes ambitiously. The first part of her book is a thorough overview of the physiology of brain development and learning disabilities that may occur, while the closing sections on do-it-yourself pedagogy, using the child's world as a living classroom, are superb.

Healy takes her strongest stand in urging parents not to push their "superbabies," particularly in the critical area of reading, making clear that true reading readiness must precede effective instruction. About the best book in this field, "Your Child's Growing Mind" recognizes that "learning is never finished, never perfect."

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