Creating curriculum for the youngest children in preschool: children’s perspectives and didactics of the present moment

Forskningsoutput: Typer av avhandlingarDoktorsavhandling

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This thesis takes as one point of departure the concept of the expanded curriculum where curricula encompass both the formal steering documents, as well as that which goes on within the framework of preschool education and through the actors in preschools. The overarching purpose is therefore to generate knowledge about what conditions for learning the work of teachers make possible when curricula are created in preschool settings for children aged between 1 and 3. The purpose is also to contribute with knowledge about what these created curricula would mean for children’s agency, and the importance they can have for children’s opportunities for learning and development. The three empirical studies consist of digitally recorded interviews with teachers and video observations with a focus on teachers’ communication with children in preschool. The discussion in the overarching text is constructed around three aspects that emerge in the overall results of the studies. First, the studies reveal how teachers’ work can be likened to a limiting curriculum which, on the one hand, is entirely child-centered, with the children as seen actors, but, on the other, can be interpreted as entirely teacher-centered. Secondly, there is the discussion about the affirmative curriculum, where children are presented as affirmed actors. In other words, content becomes those things that children are interested in, and their modes of expression are seen, affirmed and often repeated. Finally there is the discussion about the possibilities and dilemmas related to an expanding curriculum where children are regarded and treated as real actors in the sense that their intentions and expressions are taken seriously as relevant challenges. The current curriculum text for Swedish preschool can, in this sense, be seen as an obstacle in that its formulations are extremely broad-based, as discussed related to the results of this thesis.

StatusPublicerad - 2013

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