Table of contents(16 chapters)
This chapter discusses features of globalization and reviews international case and comparative studies of early childhood education and care (ECEC) policy. The chapter has four purposes: (1) to provide an international context for discussing ECEC policy reforms related to globalization, including international efforts to forge a shared vision of children's rights: (2) to review cross-national studies of ECEC policy; (3) to use case study examples as a way to highlight how historical precedent and contextual factors influence responses to globalization; and (4) to suggest a values-based, contextual framework for international ECEC policy research. Recent ECEC policy concerns and initiatives are evident in the areas of governance and regulation, funding, access, curriculum, staff recruitment and retention, and parent involvement.
Child care research has progressed over the past several decades to a level of sophistication and depth that begins to give some answers to the question, “what is the impact of child care on young children?” This paper provides a model within which this complex body of literature can be viewed and presents a comprehensive review of the literature. The Child Care Quality Model, based on ecological theory, helps to organize and conceptualize the relationship among the salient components of the child care research literature. Central to the model is the relationship of child care quality to child outcomes. In addition, both proximal and distal influencing variables are considered.The examination of the literature expands on these aspects of the model by first reviewing the elements of structural and process quality, and how these are measured. It then considers studies that report the impact of child care on child outcomes in social, behavioral/emotional, and cognitive/language development. Research that focuses on additional influencing factors, which interact with child care to impact child outcomes, are also reviewed. These include proximal variables such as family characteristics, child characteristics, and program characteristics, and more distal community and societal variables, including child care licensing standards. A summary synthesizes the literature in the context of the Child Care Quality Model, and points out some of the gaps in the current level of understanding of how child care influences young children.
The education and training of child care workers are viewed as keys to improving classroom/caregiver dynamics and the overall quality of child care. This assessment of the Pennsylvania Child Care/Early Childhood Development Training System offers an analysis of this hypothesis. The research was designed for dual purposes: to identify training needs for Pennsylvania child care providers and to assess the impact of training and work environment on the quality of care. The results highlight specific areas where there are needs for training and reveal a clear association between opportunities for professional growth and the quality of care.
This chapter provides a case study of one woman who works as a professional child carer in a capital city of Australia. It details the ways in which she cares professionally for young children and shows how connections have been made between this caring and the ways in which the carer was mothered, or cared for as a child. Cultural feminist perspectives are adopted to theorise the lived experiences of mothering and caring that are depicted. The case study provides insights into connections that existed between the carer's experiences of growing up in relationships with her mother and the caring philosophies that continued to mediate her professional caring practices with young children.
This paper explores the use of argumentation by young children. Drawing on transcripts of children's play, as well as planned mathematical experiences for children aged five to seven years in a school setting, a social constructivist approach is employed to described and analyze ways in which argumentation is used by some young children to construct knowledge. Implications for early childhood education are derived from these examples and from the theoretical discussion of argumentation and social constructivism.