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ERIC Number: ED413149
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Sep
Pages: 8
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
Principals' Ability To Implement "Best Practices" In Early Childhood.
French, Judy; Pena, Sally
Young children possess a unique way of knowing and learning that is best accommodated by developmentally appropriate practices that create a holistic, integrated, active learning environment. In the first part of a two-phase study, a survey of all elementary school principals in the largely rural state of Idaho revealed a somewhat tepid, moderate agreement with the use of developmentally appropriate practices in the primary grades, with principals from smaller rural districts showing even less support for certain components of best practice. In the second phase of the study, 55 principals from the smallest, more isolated rural schools were surveyed to investigate problematic components of developmentally appropriate practices. Principals believed that the factors influencing the implementation of a developmental approach to teaching young children were, in descending order, teacher beliefs, parent expectations, teacher dispositions, principal beliefs, teacher satisfaction, supervisor expectations, and school board and on-going training. On-site interviews with 16 principals revealed that virtually all of them desired a developmental approach to teaching in kindergarten, while 50 percent expressed the same desire for grade 2. Problems in implementing developmentally appropriate practices included lack of large blocks of time for in-depth work, community perceptions that some methods do not include enough skill development, and the need to support standardized testing. Two of the 16 schools visited exhibited an especially high level of teaching principles and strategies that matched definitions of developmentally appropriate practices. Contains 20 references. (TD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Idaho