Dana Frantz Bentley is an assistant professor in the early childhood programs at Lesley. She is also a classroom teacher in the early childhood program at Buckingham Browne and Nichols School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She has been an early childhood teacher for over fifteen years, working with young children from infancy to age seven in diverse, urban settings in Boston and in New York City. Dana has a particular background in rethinking creativity and artistic practice with young children; she uses this perspective in the constantly evolving curricula in her emergent, child-centered classroom.
In her teaching and writing, Dana focuses on social justice work with young children, studying children’s emerging political literacies, as well as her own pedagogy as an anti-bias educator. Dana is particularly inspired by the work of Reconceptualizing Early Childhood Education (RECE), and seeks to question and disrupt traditional assumptions about early childhood education in her research and practice.
Dana’s writing has been featured in a wide range of early childhood journals, as well in as her book Everyday Artists, from Teachers College Press. Her role as a scholar/teacher, working both as a practitioner and an academic, allows her to operate from a unique perspective. This dual role allows her to question and investigate theory in practice in the ever-evolving realities of today’s young children.