Investing in home–preschool collaboration for understanding social worlds of multilingual children

Investing in home–preschool collaboration for understanding social worlds of multilingual children

Author(s): Anne Kulttia (anne.kultti@ped.gu.se) & Ingrid Pramling Samuelssonb
Source: Journal of Early Childhood Education Research; Vol 5(1), p. 69-91.

Full text: PDF

Abstract: In the present study, the critical role of education in promoting social and cultural sustainability is a premise for understanding learning opportunities that are actualized in the preschool context. Information and dialogue as forms of collaboration are investigated through a directed content analysis to interpret empirical data from an in-schooling model in two preschool units, with caregivers and educators with first languages other than Swedish. The analysis shows that collaboration is expressed in terms of information passed from educators to caregivers. The caregivers are not expected to have context-relevant experience to share with the educators. At the same time, however, caregivers are presented as the experts in knowing their child. The educators take the role of expert of knowing the caregivers, based on their earlier experience, and the in-schooling model is used as a tool to anticipate problems. Caregivers’ ‘active’ participation as advocates becomes primarily a question of fitting into the preschool. Two relevant interpretations of findings are discussed: 1) educators taking responsibility for collaboration and collaboration as a communicative space for dialogue, and 2) possible innovative ways of taking the child’s perspective on becoming a member within the new language and educational contexts.

Author-Supplied Keywords: linguistic diversity, immigrant parents, information, dialogue, social and cultural sustainability

ISSN: 2323-7414

ISSN-L: 2323-7414 online

Author Affiliation: a, bUniversity of Gothenburg, Sweden