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ERIC Number: EJ1139412
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Apr
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0020-7187
"Why Do We Celebrate …?" Filling Traditions with Meaning in an Ethnically Diverse Swedish Preschool
Puskás, Tünde; Andersson, Anita
International Journal of Early Childhood, v49 n1 p21-37 Apr 2017
The Swedish preschool is an important socializing agent because the great majority of children aged, from 1 to 5 years, are enrolled in an early childhood education program. This paper explores how preschool teachers and children, in an ethnically diverse preschool, negotiate the meaning of cultural traditions celebrated in Swedish preschools. Particular focus is given to narrative representations of cultural traditions as they are co-constructed and negotiated in preschool practice between teachers and children. Cultural traditions are seen as shared events in the children's preschool life, as well as symbolic resources which enable children and preschool teachers to conceive themselves as part of a larger whole. The data analyzed are three videotaped circle time events focused on why a particular tradition is celebrated. Methodologically the analysis builds on a narrative approach inspired by Bakhtin's notion of addressivity and on Alexander's ideas about dialogic teaching. The results of the analysis show that the teachers attempt to achieve a balance between transferring traditional cultural and religious values and realizing a child-centered pedagogy, emphasizing the child's initiative. The analyses also show that narratives with a religious tonality generate some uncertainty on how to communicate with the children about the traditions that are being discussed. These research findings are important because, in everyday practice, preschool teachers enact whether religion is regarded as an essential part of cultural socialization, while acting both as keepers of traditions and agents of change.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Preschool Education; Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Sweden
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A