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The Capability Approach and Early Childhood Education Curricula

An Investigation into Teachers’ Beliefs and Practices

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Antoanneta Potsi

This book explores the Capability Approach (CA) as an alternative critical lens through which to regard early childhood education (ECE) curricula. The CA framework is a counter narrative to the narrow instrumentalism that reduces education to a mere process of academic skills acquisition for a future workplace. Primarily the book draws on the example of the Greek case. Criticizing the «bit role» that the front-line implementers play in the curriculum design and planning procedure it argues that efficient curriculum development can only occur when a zymosis between the pedagogues’ beliefs, practical experience, and theoretical knowledge is accomplished. Evidence shows that beliefs define the educators’ practices into the pedagogical context. The issues discussed are unlikely to be confined to this country alone and will have resonances on other contexts.

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4.1. Teachers’ analysis experience grouping ....................................................... 100 4.2. Cross-Tabs on teachers’ categories and age ................................................. 101 4.3. Teachers’ background characteristics ........................................................... 102 4.4. Questionnaire Items – Beliefs in Enhancing Children’s Capabilities .................................................................................... 104 4.5. Questionnaire Items – Beliefs in Academic Learning Orientation ..................................................................................... 105 4.6. Questionnaire Items – Practices in Enhancing Children’s Capabilities .......106 4.7. Questionnaire Items – Practices in Academic Learning Orientation ...... 106 4.8. Self-Efficacy Scale Items................................................................................. 108 4.9. Decision-Latitude Scale Items ....................................................................... 108 4.10. Sample distribution within recruitment institutions ................................. 110 4.11. Scales reliabilities ............................................................................................ 112 4.12. Pearson’s correlation coefficient Bartlett’s test of sphericity and the Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin measures of Sampling (KMO) of measurement models ................................................................................. 116 5.1. Descriptive Statistics for the 17 Key Variables (N = 341) .......................... 126 5.2. Frequency Table of “Years of Experience” (YoE) ........................................ 127 5.3. Correlation Matrix for the Main Research Variables (N = 341) ............... 129 11 List of Figures 1.1. Structure of the Greek educational system ....................................................20 3.1. Main Research Model .......................................................................................96 4.1. Stages of development and training needs of preschool teachers ...............99 4.2. Survey instrument distribution .................................................................... 111 4.3. Validated Measurement Model of Teachers’ Self-Efficacy ........................ 117 4.4. Validated Measurement Model of Teachers’ Decision Latitude ............... 118 4.5. Validated Measurement Model of Capabilities-Based Beliefs .................. 119 4.6. Validated Measurement Model of Performance-Based Beliefs ................ 120 4.7. Validated Measurement Model of Capabilities-Based Practices .............. 121 4.8. Validated Measurement Model of Performance-Based Practices ............ 122 5.1. Second -order model of teachers’ beliefs (* p < .05 **p < .01.) ................. 132 5.2. Empirically validated measurement model of capabilities-based beliefs. ............................................................................... 134 5.3. Empirically validated structural model of teachers’ beliefs and practices .................................................................................................... 137

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