ERIC Number: ED435500
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999
Reference Count: N/A
The Role of Religious Beliefs in Early Childhood Education: Christian and Buddhist Preschools in Japan.
Holloway, Susan D.
Early Childhood Research & Practice, v1 n2 Fall 1999
The views of teachers and directors in four Christian preschools and four Buddhist preschools are examined in this qualitative study of early childhood education in Japan. In Christian preschools, the guiding principle was that each child was a precious gift of God. This belief resulted in a play-oriented curriculum that maximized the choices available to children. Teachers also attempted to encourage children's creativity and their ability to formulate thoughts and express them to others. A particular focus was helping children appreciate each other as individuals and learn to form relationships based upon that appreciation. In Buddhist preschools, the curriculum was designed to strengthen children's virtue, intellect, and physical well-being. Activities were teacher structured, with an emphasis on attaining literacy and numeracy skills. Lessons were delivered in a whole group context, with an emphasis on absorbing content rather than encouraging personal exploration and expression. The clear implications of these different religious perspectives suggest that similar analyses would be useful if undertaken in the United States, where very little research has been conducted on church-based preschools. (Contains 38 references.) (Author/LLP)
Descriptors: Administrator Attitudes, Buddhism, Christianity, Church Role, Classroom Environment, Foreign Countries, Parochial Schools, Preschool Children, Preschool Curriculum, Preschool Education, Preschool Teachers, Religious Organizations, Student Centered Curriculum, Teacher Attitudes, Teacher Student Relationship
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Japan