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Existential questions in early childhood education programs in Sweden. Teachers' conceptions and children's experience

Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift
Författare Ingrid Pramling
Eva Johansson
Publicerad i Child Youth Care Forum
Volym 24
Nummer/häfte 2
Publiceringsår 1995
Publicerad vid Institutionen för pedagogik och didaktik
Språk en
Ämnesord ECE, existential questions, children, preschool
Ämneskategorier Pedagogik

Sammanfattning

Swedish guidelines for early childhood education emphasize the importance of children's existential questions. The program encourages preschool to offer children different opportunities to work on questions like what it is to be, to live and die, grow old, about religion, beliefs, traditions, etc. at their level of maturity (Socialstyrelsen, 1987). Our experience in teacher education and early childhood programs is, however, that this is an area in which many teachers have difficulties. In the present empirical study 13 teachers were interviewed to find out what they consider existential questions for their children to be, and what strategies or methods they have for dealing with these questions. Teachers' conceptions about the what and how aspects of existential questions are described in terms of their qualitative differences. Each teacher was then asked to keep a diary of the existential questions children raised during the following month. Differences between the teachers' conceptions, which showed hesitation, and the "spontaneous" approaches and active involvement that emerged in reality, as recorded in their own diaries, are discussed.

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