07 SES 02 A, Intercultural Education and Identity Development
A growing number of children enrolled in early childhood settings in New Zealand and internationally are those whose cultures are different from the mainstream cultures. Recent research has highlighted challenges for refugees and immigrants in accessing education services that are responsive to their cultural and linguistic identities and to the contexts of their lives (McMillan & Gray, 2009). However, there are few studies of how early childhood pedagogy can address such challenges. In response to this, a research project investigating how culturally responsive teaching and learning is practiced in three separate and culturally diverse early childhood centres in New Zealand was initiated (Mitchell et al., in publication). We adopted a view that in studying and improving teaching practice in culturally diverse early childhood settings, we would adopt the concept of culturally responsive pedagogy. Previous studies in schools have identified that culturally responsive pedagogy is implemented when teachers bridge connections between children’s learning in their education institution and in their own cultural communities, when teachers and students collectively make sense of learning and teaching, and when diverse ways of learning are provided and privileged in classrooms (Bishop, 2010). Internationally, Miller and Petriwskyj (2013) challenged early childhood teachers to move to an intercultural education, which they argued requires intercultural dialogue with a range of families, and critical and reflective practice. These ideas served as a springboard for understanding the practices of culturally responsive pedagogy in early childhood centres and were also useful points of reference in the present research.
The research study on which this paper is based investigated how teachers in these three diverse settings practically implemented their values by drawing on the funds of knowledge and cultural capital of the families they worked with, weaving these values into the fabric of the national curriculum, Te Whāriki (Ministry of Education, 1996). In doing so, the research aimed to identify culturally responsive teaching practice.
The two research questions were:
- What does culturally diverse teaching and learning look like in early childhood settings?
- How are the values and practices of diverse families accessed and integrated into the curriculum?
Teachers and researchers worked within a social constructionist theoretical frame which holds that concepts are socially constructed within an historical and cultural context. The research involved collaborations between the university researchers and two or three teachers in each of three culturally diverse centres. At the start of the project and towards the end of the project, the three teaching teams and researchers came together for a day’s workshop. In these ways the pedagogical knowledge of the teachers and the research knowledge of the researchers were able to be pooled.
Bishop, R. (2010). Critical multiculturalism and indigenous students. In S. May & C. C. Sleeter (Eds.), Critical multiculturalism: Theory and praxis (pp. 61-71). New York, NY: Routledge. McMillan, N., & Gray, A. (2009). Long-term resettlement of refugees: An annotated bibliography of New Zealand and international literature. Quota Refugees Ten Years on Series Retrieved from www.dol.govt.nz/research Miller, M., & Petriwskyj, A. (2013). New directions in intercultural early education in Australia. International Journal of Early Childhood, 45(2), 252-266. doi: 10.1007/s13158-013-0092-3 Ministry of Education. (1996). Te Whäriki. Wellington, New Zealand: Learning Media. Mitchell, L., Bateman, A., Ouko, A., Lees, J., Xiao, W., Gerrity, R., . . . Rapana, L. (in publication). Teaching and learning in culturally diverse early childhood settings Sacks, H., Schegloff, E. A., & Jefferson, G. (1974). A simplest systematics for the organisation of turn-taking for conversation. Language, 50, 696 – 735.
- Search for keywords and phrases in "Text Search"
- Restrict in which part of the abstracts to search in "Where to search"
- Search for authors and in the respective field.
- For planning your conference attendance you may want to use the conference app, which will be issued some weeks before the conference
- If you are a session chair, best look up your chairing duties in the conference system (Conftool) or the app.