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Early Childhood Care and Education in China Monica Lysack What was I expecting? Small, crowded facilities A lower standard of care than Canada in terms of ratios, health and safety standards, and equipment Programs that were over-structured and teacher-directed

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Early Childhood Care and Education in China


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Presentation Transcript
what was i expecting
What was I expecting?
  • Small, crowded facilities
  • A lower standard of care than Canada in terms of ratios, health and safety standards, and equipment
  • Programs that were over-structured and teacher-directed
  • Inequities due to income and gender
what i found
What I found:
  • High quality programs; better-trained and well-respected educators
  • Large, beautiful, well-designed facilities
  • Programs that are accessible to the majority of families, regardless of income
  • Happy, valued, well-cared-for children!
  • That I had a great deal to question about my own values as an Early Childhood Educator
slide4

Facilities

  • These schools were designed and built as Early Childhood facilities.
  • The dedication of these large spaces solely for the use of young children, in a place where space is at a premium, tells us something about how this culture values children.
slide5

Outdoor Play Spaces

  • large spaces
  • wide variety of activities and equipment, including those typically found indoors (e.g. blocks, water table)
  • paddling pools
  • variety of surfaces, levels, and textures
  • beautiful environments
slide6

Safely enclosed spaces promote active, involved outdoor play.

Children may choose independent play or they may prefer to be involved in teacher-led group games.

slide7

Indoor Environments

This toddler room has slightly scaled down equipment similar to that in preschool rooms.

  • Arranged by interest centres.
  • Uncluttered, well-designed space.
slide8

Rooms are large, bright, and cheery.

Aesthetics and cleanliness are important aspects of the environment.

Usually thirty preschool children are accommodated in each group with three teachers. Each group has access to several large rooms.

slide9

A room just for napping or sleeping overnight if necessary.

Each child has her or his own bed which helps to create a sense of belonging. The environment is relaxed and warm; children know that it is a quiet place to rest or sleep.

slide10

Bathrooms

These bathrooms show traditional Chinese toilets. The potty-chair assists children who need support. Bathrooms are clean, and centrally located to allow easy access from any room.

slide11

Equipment and Resources

The storage room in this school contained a large number of well-maintained toys that are rotated throughout the rooms.

They were very proud of their teacher-made materials and resources.

slide12

I was surprised to see multicultural materials!

The organization of materials reflects a Montessori influence.

slide13

Health

The resident doctor posts the results of check ups and developmental screening for parents and teachers to review.

slide14

Nutrition

The menu board indicates the nutritious foods that will be served that week, along with pictures for non-readers.

All meals, snacks, and beverages are provided for the children.

slide15

Activity Centres

All buildings that we observed have this type of hallway outside of the regular classroom. It is a perfect space for activity centres. Lots of windows provide natural lighting.

The math centre includes manipulatives and visual representation of math concepts.

slide16

The Project Approach

Children developed this “under-the-sea” theme on their own. Educators provided resources and support; children created!

slide17

Following the project approach...

This is what children saw outside their classroom window:

construction equipment including scaffolding and cranes.

slide18

This three-dimensional creation is the children’s response to what they saw outside.

They were provided with a collection of everyday, recycled materials in the creative arts activity centre.

slide19

Social Studies

This room is used for an organized social studies activity.

Displays in the room are a balance of both teacher-made and child-made materials. They are reflective of the world around them.

slide21

Fine Arts

Introducing the fine arts to young children seems to be an important educational value. Every classroom has a piano. The music room provides a wide variety of instruments, enough for every child in the group of thirty. Children receive direct instruction from qualified teachers.

slide22

Sports and Recreation

This is a photograph of the daycare’s soccer team. Their team plays other daycare teams.

slide23

Early Literacy

Early literacy is promoted through the use of single characters associated with a picture of the concept that it represents.

Visual clues, like this poster in the bathroom showing a child brushing her teeth, remind children of what is expected.

slide24

Social Development

Since families in China have only one child, socialization is very important. Children like to “cluster” and this is encouraged by the teachers.

I know this game! No matter where we are in the world, children inviting adults to share tea is a universal game!

slide25

Adult-Child Interactions

Adults and children interact in a very relaxed manner. It appears that adults and children share a sense of mutual respect. The environment is not a controlling one, yet children do not act out or demonstrate challenging behaviours. Adults are warm and empathetic.

slide26

Closing Reflections

What are the similarities and differences between early childhood education in Canada and in China?

What are some cultural and contextual factors that influence these differences?

What can we in Canada learn from the Chinese early childhood care and education system?