ERIC Number: ED248018
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Apr
Reference Count: 0
A Study of Early Childhood Teacher Beliefs: Primary Teachers.
Spodek, Bernard; Rucinski, Elizabeth Anne
By asking three first-grade teachers to respond to actions taking place in their classrooms, researchers made an attempt to identify the beliefs or constructs that underlie teacher decisions. The following research questions were addressed: Is there a system of professional constructs that can be identified in early childhood teachers? and, To what role dimensions of teaching are these constructs related? To answer these questions, teachers were observed in their classrooms, and observed teacher decisions became the basis for interviews. Statements of beliefs abstracted from interview transcripts were edited and presented for teachers' confirmation, disconfirmation, or modification. Resulting statements were organized into 10 content areas, and statements of belief about values were separated from beliefs about fact. Categories were (1) goals for children's behavior, (2) children's needs, (3) classroom management, (4) planning and organization, (5) materials, (6) learning, (7) instructional processes, (8) academics, (9) evaluation and assessment, and (10) home and parents. Results indicated that, while teachers differed in the number of statements generated, a consistent ratio (60:40) existed between beliefs about facts and beliefs about values underlying their decisions. Sixty-seven (19 percent) of the beliefs were held in common by all three teachers, while an additional 91 (26 percent) were held in common by two of the three. Beliefs not held in common reflected individual values concerning children, teachers, or management and instruction. (Author/RH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Constructs; Knowledge
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (68th, New Orleans, LA, April 23-27, 1984).