ERIC Number: EJ1022297
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 36
Preservice Teachers' Beliefs about Childhood: Challenges for a Participatory Early Childhood Education?
Avgitidou, Sofia; Pnevmatikos, Dimitris; Likomitrou, Sonia
Journal of Early Childhood Teacher Education, v34 n4 p390-404 2013
This study examines preservice teachers' beliefs about childhood in an attempt to see how they may support an active, participatory role for children in early childhood education (ECE). Three hundred sixteen early childhood preservice teachers described childhood characteristics and children's ability for decision-making in a written text. These texts were content analyzed and then quantified. Preservice teachers' beliefs about childhood were found to vary and some of their beliefs corresponded to existing scientific theories and typologies. Despite this variation, preservice teachers' beliefs had dominant ontological and epistemological presuppositions that highlighted childhood as a homogeneous period of human life, as a state of being, rather than as a dynamic and developing period of life. The majority of preservice teachers assigned children with an ability to make decisions but only under specific preconditions. We argue that these beliefs may act as obstacles for the enhancement of participatory processes in ECE due to their ontological and epistemological underpinnings. Implications of current findings in relation to teacher education are discussed.
Descriptors: Preservice Teachers, Beliefs, Student Attitudes, Early Childhood Education, Children, Transcripts (Written Records), Content Analysis, Decision Making Skills, Preservice Teacher Education, Individual Characteristics, Foreign Countries
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Postsecondary Education; Higher Education; Early Childhood Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Greece