The early years are critically important for the development of self-regulation—the set of abilities that enable children to control their emotions and behavior, interact positively with others, and engage in independent learning. This book examines how self-regulation develops in the first 8 years of life and describes practical ways for educators and caregivers to support its development. Part I reviews a diverse body of theory and research on the growth of self-control and self-direction across emotional, social, motivational, and cognitive domains. Also described is contemporary research linking self-regulatory abilities to control systems in the brain. Part II presents concrete suggestions for enhancing self-regulatory skills in infants and toddlers, preschoolers and kindergartners, and school-age children. Chapters address caregiver and teacher behaviors, behavior management techniques, ways of arranging the environment, and strategies for enhancing peer interactions and children's interest in self-directed learning.