Cover: The Boy Who Would Be a Helicopter, from Harvard University PressCover: The Boy Who Would Be a Helicopter in PAPERBACK

The Boy Who Would Be a Helicopter

Product Details


$25.00 • £21.95 • €22.95

ISBN 9780674080317

Publication Date: 09/01/1991

Academic Trade

176 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches


Add to Cart

Educators: Request an Exam Copy (Learn more)

Media Requests:

Related Subjects

A tour de force… Years from now we may know the fruit of the trees Vivian Paley and her associates have planted. It will be easy, then, to recognize her former students. When asked to recall their kindergarten experiences, they surely will begin with the words, ‘Once upon a time…’—Thomas J. Cottle, Chicago Tribune

The Boy Who Would Be a Helicopter is, among other things, an original essay on the practice of teaching young children… Vivian Paley’s innovation is her use of children’s stories as a vehicle of instruction… Paley is an artist whose medium is children in the classroom. The end product of her year’s work is a group of children who can live comfortably with themselves and with one another. This group of children will soon scatter. But each child will always carry a bit of Vivian Paley along with him or her, and that is the way in which a gifted teacher’s art lives on.—David Elkind, New York Times Book Review

For those interested in…the education of the spirit, this is finally a heartening and challenging book.—Geoff Fox, Times Educational Supplement

There are many funny moments…[and] an attractive humility in Paley’s work… Anyone who was once a child, and especially those who were once helicopters, will enjoy it.—David Perkins, Kansas City Star

Humanity, wisdom, and understanding are the words that come to mind when reading Paley’s latest book. She offers a view into the world of children that is respectful of their strengths and complexity… This book shines with an authenticity that comes from the voice of the teacher, not the observer… [It] should be required reading for all those working with children of any age. They and other readers will find it an absorbing and enlightening experience.—S. Sugarman, Choice

Recent News

Black lives matter. Black voices matter. A statement from HUP »

From Our Blog

Jacket: Iron and Blood: A Military History of the German-Speaking Peoples since 1500, by Peter Wilson, from Harvard University Press

A Lesson in German Military History with Peter Wilson

In his landmark book Iron and Blood: A Military History of the German-Speaking Peoples since 1500, acclaimed historian Peter H. Wilson offers a masterful reappraisal of German militarism and warfighting over the last five centuries, leading to the rise of Prussia and the world wars. Below, Wilson answers our questions about this complex history,