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ERIC Number: EJ1001935
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Sep
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 37
ISSN: ISSN-1836-9391
New Possibilities in Thinking, Speaking and Doing: Early Childhood Teachers' Professional Identity Constructions and Ethics
Thomas, Louise
Australasian Journal of Early Childhood, v37 n3 p87-95 Sep 2012
The early childhood sector has in recent times engaged in processes of professionalisation. The expectations associated with engagement in professional relationships is one element of such processes. Another element is an expectation of ethical practice. The paper considers how particular representations of relationships and representations of ethics contribute to the construction of the professional identities of early childhood teachers. Discussion is presented of the ways early childhood teachers experience relationships with parents and colleagues. Possibilities of "new" constructions of professionalism are explored through disruptions to taken-for-granted discursive practices which shape relationships between teachers and parents and between teachers and colleagues. To engage in such disruptions, a theoretical framework of poststructuralism is used to analyse early childhood literature, which works to construct particular identities for early childhood teachers. This analysis identifies possible challenges to a binary response of either acceptance of, or resistance to, dominant discourses at work in identity constructions. One outcome of this challenge is to argue the possibility of holding opposites together in the work of identity construction. Holding opposites together makes possible new, socially and contextually informed ways to think, speak and do constructions of these identities. Representation of ethics as a relational construct is located within these new possibilities of professional identity constructions.
Early Childhood Australia. P.O. Box 7105, Watson, ACT 2602, Australia. Tel: +61-2-6242-1800; Fax: +61-2-6242-1818; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A