Browsing by Subject "Early Education"

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  • Tuominen, Pinja (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    The aim of this study was to examine how the Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) directors describe the pedagogy of children under the age of three and what significances the ECEC directors can give to the pedagogy of said children. The study focuses on analyzing how the pedagogy of under the age of three is discursively constructed by the ECEC direc-tors. Previous studies have shown that the shortcomings in the pedagogy are emphasized especially on the children under the age of three, although it is known that the early childhood phase is very intensive in the development of children. Thus, the pedagogy and discourse of the ECEC directors is very important, as it guides the whole pedagogic work culture. The methodology of this research was based on social constructionism and discourse analy-sis. The data for this master’s thesis was gathered by interviewing five municipal ECEC di-rectors from two municipalities of the southern Finland area. The interviews were conducted in 2020. A qualitative research method which utilized half-structured thematic interviews was used. The interviews were recorded and transcribed and the data was analyzed by discourse analysis. Four different discourses were formulated from the data of the first research problem, how ECEC directors describe the pedagogy of children under the age of three. The following dis-courses occurred in the research material: the whole day pedagogy, research-based, profes-sionalism and pedagogical leadership. Four different discourses were formulated from the da-ta of the second research problem occurred following four discourses: the basis of life, rights of children, sensitive interaction in the middle of the pedagogy and participation of the child. The ECEC directors described pedagogy of the children under the age of three as a unity of education and care. Furthermore, the importance of pedagogy, research basis, professional skills and pedagogic leadership was emphasized in the discussion. The sensitive interaction and participation of the children was the baseline of a good quality pedagogics. The pedagog-ics of the early childhood education was described as an important foundation of life and a privilege of the child.
  • Vaara, Jenni (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    The early childhood education and care (ECEC) and Basic education introduced a new national Core Curriculum by the Finnish National Agency for education in 2016. Both national norm curricula can be found confluence, and since ECEC transformed under to Finnish National Agency for education in 2015, ECEC, preschool education and basic education becomes an integral part of the lifelong path of growth and learning and of the continuum of curricula. The purpose of this study is to clarify ECE leaders’ and basic education leaders’ views on curricula and curriculum leadership. The research questions are following: (1) How does Curriculum appear in ECE leaders and basic education leaders discussion? (2) What discourses can be identified in both discussions? (3) How does Curriculum Implementation appear in both discussions? This study was conducted using qualitative methods and the used data consists of theme interview collected in the Eduleaders project training. The training involved 10 interviewees working in the context of educational leadership. The material was analyzed by a using discourse analysis with the aim of defining curricula discourses in leaders’ discussions. Four significant discourses were mentioned and can be identified as the following: 1. The discussion about curriculum as a framework 2. The discussion about curriculum as a vanguard. 3. The discussion about curriculum as a challenge. 4. The discussion about curriculum as an enabler. The research results show that both early childhood education leaders and basic education discuss about curricula within the same framework and with the same concepts. The results reveal the curriculum to be in reformation phase in which the old and the new curriculum are confronted. Furthermore, the national curriculum gained a central role as a fundament of work. The distributed leadership and pedagogical discussions occurred in the discussions of both leaders as ways to implement the curriculum. In the discussions about curriculum as challenge the leaders pointed out it being difficult to implement the curriculum in classrooms or child groups, where teachers prefer rather traditional teaching than the alternative methods of the new curriculum. Eventually the slowness and extent of development as well as short-sightness in the field were identified as challenges. However, the discussion illustrates the curriculum positively in terms of child orientation, opportunities to try new things and co-creation.
  • Nirkko, Ruusu (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    Climate change is a fundamental phenomenon and challenge of our time and it should be dealt with in all areas of life. However, climate change education is being implemented very limitedly. During recent years there has been increasing amount of research on climate change education, but climate change education in early childhood education has been studied very sparingly. According to previous research, news about climate change can arouse many kinds of emotions and thoughts in children. Based on research, it has been proposed that through art-driven teaching methods it is possible to deal with emotions and thoughts aroused by climate change and strengthen hopefulness and belief in one’s own influence. Of the forms of art education, drama education as a method of climate change education has hardly been studied. The aim of this study was to add knowledge of what climate change education could be in early childhood education. The study investigates early childhood education specialists’ definitions of climate change education and their views on what possibilities drama education methods can offer for implementation of climate change education. I designed and implemented climate drama workshops for early childhood education specialists and collected the research data in the context of the workshops. Participants of the study produced short writings and in addition two of the workshops were videotaped. I analyzed the writing data and the video data qualitatively using the method of theory-based content analysis. Aa a basis for the analysis I used primarily the holistic bicycle model on climate change education (Tolppanen ym. 2017). The early childhood education specialists who participated in the study defined adding knowledge and understanding, encouraging to action, developing values and conceptions of the world and dealing with emotions as contents of climate change education. Specialists’ uncertainty and worries about arousing difficult emotions in children appeared as barriers for implementing climate change education in early childhood education. From the perspective of the study subjects, drama education methods seemed to have possibilities for implementing several parts of climate change education. Drama educations possibilities related to adding knowledge, developing thinking skills, building conceptions of the world, empowering and dealing with emotions were brought up. Methods of drama education offer practical ways for implementing and developing climate change education in early childhood education.
  • Jukkala, Silja (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    Aims The purpose of this study is to describe the interaction between a special education teacher and a child with a developmental disability in special needs groups. The aim of the study is to find out how the teacher engages interaction with the child in different situations, and how the reciprocal interaction manifests. The study is based on theories of social interaction. Methods The ethnological approach was chosen, as the aim of the study was to describe the interaction between the teacher and child in everyday situations. The data was collected from three special needs groups in early childhood education, in the Helsinki metropolitan area. The data included 351 video recordings, about 4 hours in total. The analysis was limited to 2 hours 42 minutes of video. Data was analyzed in two steps. First the teachers´ engagement to interaction with the child was analyzed using the Suhonen's (2009) form, which is based on the AES (adult engagement scale) developed by Pascall (1995). Then the 17 video literates were analyzed with conversational analysis. The analysis focused on the elements of social interaction, teacher-child interaction initiatives, responding to initiatives and the formation of reciprocal interaction. Findings and conclusions Teachers’ engagement to interaction with the child varied according to situation. Engagement was strongest in teaching activities and weakest in care situations. Successful interaction was formed when the teachers were able to throw themselves in, enable the child's natural initiatives and succeed in recognizing and responding to them. The use of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) strengthened the interaction. Most genuine connection was formed in idle moments, when spontaneous plays formed between teacher and child. Interaction between a teacher and a child with developmental disabilities is built on the pedagogical activities of the more skilled interaction partner, the teacher. Forming a connection takes time and sensitivity in recognizing the natural interaction methods of the child.
  • Arokanto, Chantal (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    Climate change related teaching, so called climate education, has lately been promoted and further developed in Finland in subject teaching and basic education. The perspective of early childhood education, however, has received little attention. The aim of this study is to explore the views of educators interested in environmental matters about climate change in early childhood education. The purpose is to research what climate related content, approaches and methods work well and what kind of climate activities could be used in early childhood education. The empirical data set was collected both as an online survey and as interviews. The survey was published in six social media communities focusing on environmental education. A total of 26 respondents took part in the survey, of which seven also participated in a thematic interview by phone. The group consisted of early childhood professionals with different educational backgrounds, most also having some additional training or special expertise in environmental education. The participants felt that it was important to strengthen children’s relationship with nature and raise awareness about climate change. According to participants, outdoor activities and forest trips were the best methods and learning environments for climate education. Teaching scientific knowledge about climate change to children was not perceived as important as teaching climate friendly values. The educators emphasized that climate education is included in all activities such as everyday consumer choices and climate actions. According to them, climate education should be practiced by giving a hopeful and positive vision for the future. In addition, the participants emphasized the role of a safe atmosphere in which to conduct climate education; that is, protecting children from feelings of anxiety and hopelessness. According to them, educators are important role models when it comes to climate education. Therefore, the educator has a great role and responsibility in acting as an example for children.
  • Häggman, Emilia (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    Aim of this study was to investigate the connection between children’s self-regulation and temperament. Additionally, the aim of the study was to determine whether a child’s age, gender or mother’s level of education modified the associations between temperament and self-regulation skills. The research material was collected in 2017 in kindergartens in Salo (N=29) and Riihimäki (N=3) as part of the DAGIS project. Data consisted of questionnaire material collected during the baseline measurement of the project. The subjects (N=802) were 3–6 years old children and their families. Children’s self-regulation skills were measured using PikkuKesky survey (challenges in self-regulatory skills) completed by early childhood education teachers or other professional (N=757). Also, parents filled a form that measured child’s cognitive and emotional self-regulation skills separately. Children’s temperament was assessed using Children’s Behavior Questionnaire (very short form). This questionnaire was filled by parents. The relationship between child’s temperament and self-regulation was analysed using linear regression analysis. In addition to that, regression analysis was used to examine whether a child’s age and gender or maternal education level had an interaction effect with temperament on self-regulation. The results of the research showed that there was a connection between children’s temperament and self-regulation. Children with high levels of surgency had more challenges in their self-regulatory skills, while better effortful control meant that the child had fewer challenges in self-regulation. This study did not find connection between challenges of self-regulation and negative affectivity. Children with high levels of effortful control as well as those with more surgency was associated to better cognitional self-regulation. In contrast, children with high levels of negative affectivity had weaker cognitive self-regulatory skills. Children with high levels of surgency or negative affectivity had weaker emotional self-regulation skills, while children with high levels of effortful control was associated to better emotional self-regulation. In this study, age, gender and maternal educational background, had no interaction between temperament and self-regulation. Children’s personal temperament needs to be taken into account when developing child’s self-regulatory skills and pay attention to supporting the self-regulatory skills of children with different temperaments - especially surgency ones - at an early stage.
  • Hovio, Eerika (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    The purpose of this study was to research how the leadership of kindergarten leaders is correlated to the quality of early childhood education. The correlation between leadership and early childhood education quality was studied from the perspective of personnel and parents. In addition this paper studied how parents and personnel experience the quality of early childhood education. In addition, the correlation between personnel’s as well as parents’ views about leadership and to their understanding of early childhood education quality was studied. It is important to study the correlation between early childhood education leadership and quality because leadership styles affects early childhood education quality (Vlasov ym., 2018, 46). The aim of this study is to find out what leadership factors are correlated to early childhood education. Once you have found the leadership factors, you are able to develop these forward. Research data was collected in 2019 from one early childhood education area in Helsinki. The data was collected by electronic questionnaire from early childhood education personnel (N = 14) and parents (N = 36). The questionnaire had allegations about early childhood education quality and leadership. Personnel’s and parents’ views of the early childhood education quality were studied by descriptive analysis. The correlations between personnel’s and parents’ assessments on leadership and their understanding of the early childhood education quality were investigated by non-parametric Kendall´s tau-b correlation test. For the analysis, sums of variables were created from the claim categories of the questionnaire. There were eight sums of variables on both personnel’s and parents’ questionnaires. Seven of the sums of variables included early childhood education quality claims and one sum of variables included the leadership claims. The personnel´s and parents’ answers implied that the quality of early childhood is positive. The respondent group gave especially high points to the claims that child’s early childhood education curriculum was being fulfilled and that personnel and parents had discussed child’s growth, teaching and care. Kindergarten’s leader’s leadership correlated with early childhood education´s functionality of the premises, versatility, safety and with the premises enabling time to be alone as well as group to operate. In addition, when leadership was seen as high-quality, personnel were more professionally skilled and engaged to work. By taking the findings into account, kindergarten leaders should acknowledge that by their own leadership abilities they might affect the quality of early childhood education.
  • Laaksonen, Anna (Helsingin yliopisto, 2019)
    This study examines co-regulation during clean-ups and transitions between activities in ECEC. The main interest of this study was to describe co-regulation and to promote knowledge and understanding of it in these specific situations. This study also investigates the ways teachers co-regulate children’s emotion, behaviour and attention. In this study co-regulation is approached from a socio-cultural perspective, and it is considered an important factor in child’s development and learning. The videodata used in this study was collected in a daycare center in Southern Finland in spring 2017. Data of this study consist of 24 episodes that were identified from the original 51 h video corpus. Children who participated in this study were between 1 to 4 years old. This study employes an ethnomethodological approach and multimodal interaction analysis was used as a method of data analysis. Co-regulation during clean-ups and transitions between activities in ECEC was identified as a specific event which had clearly distinguishable beginning and ending. The situations where co-regulation occurred were different in relation to which situational factors invited teacher to co-regulate with specific child or group of children. Teacher used mostly active-related strategies while co-regulating, and active-related strategies were identified more than emotion-related strategies. The situations where co-regulation occurred ended successfully satisfying both teacher and child. The results indicate that co-regulation during these specific situations in ECEC had an important role in children’s development and learning. Co-regulation supported and scaffolded the children’s participation in these ECEC activities, helped the children to complete tasks and to overcome disappointments and frustrations.
  • Isotalo, Marianne (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    Tiivistelmä - Referat - Abstract Objectives. Touch is a key part of human interaction. Previous research has shown that touch has many positive effects from the perspective of a child's well-being and development. Touch is especially emphasized when working with toddlers, i.e., children under 3 years of age, as they need a lot of help with basic activities. The aim of this study was to find out how touch appears in toddlers' daytime naps. The research questions were: (1) what kind of touch is in toddlers' nap moments, (2) how is contact built between an early childhood worker and a toddler in toddlers' nap moments, and (3) what factors affect the nature of touch and the functions of touch toddlers' nap moments? Methods. This study was conducted as a qualitative interaction study. The study data included a total of 3 hours, 55 minutes and 34 seconds. The material was narrowed down to moment that captured toddlers’ nap moments from going to bed to falling asleep. These moments formed 40 episodes lasting 46 minutes and 58 seconds. Multimodal interaction analysis was applied to the limited data. I transcribed the material and examined it gradually. After examining the material, I did a theory-driven content analysis. Results and conclusions. Touching appeared to be a significant mean of interaction during toddlers’ nap moments. The study found three categories of touch, which were controlling touch, soothing touch, and gentle touch. In addition, means of interaction without contact were found in the material. The construction of touch was influenced by the child's behavior and the atmosphere in the daytime nap room. This study emphasized controlling touch, the aim of which was to guide and control the child's activities. The study revealed what kind of touching methods are used in toddlers' naps and how touching was built as part of the interaction between the toddler and the early childhood education worker. Through research, early childhood education could reflect on the construction of touch from a pedagogical perspective. What kind of touch is good care and what other functions does touch have in interaction?
  • Perho, Amanda (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    The purpose of the study is to find out how quality improvement is reflected in the leadership work of early childhood education and basic education. The study will also examine the key challenges for quality improvement in early childhood education and basic education. There were two research questions: (1) How do leaders describe quality improvement of early childhood education and basic education in their work? (2) What challenges are faced by leaders in quality improvement in early childhood education and basic education? The aim of the study is to produce information on how leadership in the field of education should be developed. The aim is also to produce information on how to develop high-quality early childhood education and basic education. Previous studies show that leadership can be used to support high-quality early childhood education and basic education. Previous studies also show that leaders in the field of education experience challenges in their work, which is why it is important to support leadership. The research material has been produced in the EduLeaders project, which aims to develop leadership studies in the field of education. The material of the study consisted of group interviews with the heads of day care centres and the principals, and there were a total of nine group interviews. The study extract was based on a phenomenological-hermeneutical approach and the material was analysed through data-based content analysis and theming. The results of the study showed that quality improvement was similar in the leadership work of early childhood education and basic education. According to the experiences of early childhood education and basic education managers, the challenges for quality development were also similar, although there were also differences in the challenges. The research resulted in the meaning structures describing the quality improvement and the challenges of quality improvement. The results of the research showed that quality development is a joint process of the organisation's experts. Quality improvement is carried out in cooperation with different parties, but more effective cooperation models should be developed. According to the study, management studies in the field of education should be developed and more effective management structures should be built for early childhood education. In addition, more systematic evaluation should be developed in both early childhood education and basic education.
  • Österman, Helmi (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    The aim of this study is to explore a composing process as a way to support children’s creative agency in Early Childhood Education (ECE) settings. The research assignment is to describe, theorize and analyze a composing process in ECE. The research questions are to find out how does the composing process appear in ECE and what factors in the teachers action support children’s creative agency. Based on earlier research, creative and musical activities enhance children’s over all growth, development and learning. The role of teachers is seen important when supporting children’s creative agency. Creative agency as a concept is still new, and earlier studies have raised a need to develop creative and musical activities in ECE. New research and methods are needed to develop abilities to support children’s creative agency. This teacher inquiry was implemented as a qualitative action research, in a group of 5-6-years old children, in an ECE center in Helsinki. Children participated in eight composing workshops that were recorded. The data consisted of seven recordings with 12 children participating in a composing process. The data was analysed as theory-driven content analyzes. The findings of this study show that a composing process can be seen as collaborative practice, where encouraging atmosphere and observing children’s initiatives are key elements. The factors that support children’s creative agency in the teachers action can be divided in two: factors concerning the interaction between the teacher and the children and factors concerning the planning, implementation and evaluation of the activities. Creative agency can be supported by breaking the authority between teacher and children and by planning and changing the activities based on children’s needs and hopes. Based on these results, teachers can support children’s creative agency with they’re own action and a composing process is one possibility to do so.
  • Novitsky-Wahlroos, Noora (Helsingin yliopisto, 2019)
    The purpose of this study was to examine thematics of people’s relationship with nature, as well as the operation "Luonnossa kotonaan - At home in nature" from a scientific point of view. This thesis examines the human-nature relationship of individuals who have been part of ”At Home in Nature” daycare as children. With main intrest being on the central factors which have contributed to the human-nature relationship of the individuals, as well as how they would currently describe their relationship with nature. Previous research into the subject makes it clear that experiences with nature as well as possibilities for independent mobility within ones own environment in childhood has an impact on the human-nature relationship. For the purpose of this study, I have interviewed four adults who in their childhood, participated in ”At home in nature” daycare. The duration which the participants had spent in ”At Home in Nature” daycare varied from one to four years. The interviews were analyzed with an individuals personal human-nature relationship perspective. This perspective originates from envriomental psychology and humanistic geography where the individuals own expereinces and accounts are in the central role. In a wider perspective the way in which humanistic geography and envrionmental psychology interpret personal human-nature relationship can be seen influenced by phenomenology; reality exists and understanding its contents is possible through the individuals experiences. The pivotal point being what those individual human experiences mean for the person themself and how they interpret the world through their own experiences. The main observations of this thesis are: ”At Home in Nature” daycare and the direct experiences with nature it enables has had a positive impact on the human-nature relationship of the participants. In addition to ”At Home in Nature” daycare the human-nature relationship of the participants has been affected by multiple other things, such as their families and childhood home locations. The human-nature relationship has impacted the participants life choice in adulthood as well. The conclusion of this thesis is that the relationship with nature amongs the participants has throughout their life evolved into a strong significant part of their lives, to some it was even extremely significant.
  • Heikkinen, Kirsi-Marja (Helsingin yliopisto, 2019)
    Involvement is a phenomenon that interests the researchers at the moment also in the context of a leadership. Involvement research in the early childhood education is focused on the involvement structures and possibilities of small children. At the moment shortage of the competent teachers and practical nurses and their commitment to the long-term work relationship however brings us back to the basic questions of leadership; how to lead involvement? The theoretical frame of this study is based on contextual model of leadership (Nivala 1999) which sees the early childhood leadership and the early childhood substance inseparable. I also use the theoretical frame of involvement created by Finnish National Institute of Health and Welfare that define involvement as closely related to the intrinsic motivation, possibility to have an affect to your surrounding environment and benevolence. My research task was to find out how early childhood education leaders experience leading involvement. What experiences they had about competence, distributed leadership and challenges that related to the industry? The study was qualitative and was based on phenomenological methodology which reach for the subjective experiences of the individuals. As a data I used the themed focus group interview material that was collected in the Eduleaders project training. Method of analysis was the theory-guided content analysis. In the results competence became a key factor in leading involvement. Leadership competence meant both common leadership skills and the ability to lead early childhood substance. Important were also the professional skills of the working community, teachers and practical nurses and their ability to work autonomously. Leading involvement was also based on functional distributed leadership that called for workable structures as well as the teacher´s competence in leading their teams and distributed pedagogical leadership. Early childhood leaders also saw joint leadership between leader- leader and teacher-teacher as a functional leadership structure in the future that may increase the experiences of deeper involvement. The challenges of leading involvement were the resources related to work as well as the current change in the operational culture, which challenged the definition of job descriptions and the involvement of a multi-professional work community. In the future the leaders hope for more innovative working style, experimentation and autonomy in relation to the mission of the early childhood education.
  • Stenberg, Saara (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    Aims. Well-be and qualified early childhood education professionals ensure the quality of early childhood education. Pedagogical leadership that notes the fulfillment of psychological basic needs has the crucial role. Recently, however, leadership in early childhood education has greatly diversified. The purpose of this study was to clarify how the pedagogical leadership in early childhood education enables the fulfillment of the psychological basic needs of early childhood education professionals in their work. The aim of this thesis was to study the experiences of early childhood education professionals, how the fulfillment of psychological basic needs manifests in their work. In addition, the aim of this study was to find out the promotional and preventive factors related to the fulfillment of basic needs. Methods. This thesis is a qualitative case study. A theme interview was used as the data collection method. The framework of the interview was based on an interview formula measuring the fulfillment of psychological basic needs at work. Five early childhood education professionals were interviewed for this study. Theory–based content analysis was used as a method of analysis. Results and conclusions. The results showed that early childhood education professionals felt that psychological basic needs were filled quite well in their work. Fulfillment of psychological basic needs was associated with good pedagogical leadership. Based on the experiences of early childhood education professionals, the success of pedagogical leadership and thus supporting the fulfillment of the psychological basic needs of early childhood educators requires resources and leadership skills. According to the results, it is important to pay attention to the quality of the interaction, time available for the interaction, and the balance between work tasks and working hours. To support the fulfillment of the psychological basic needs of early childhood education professionals is essential to draw attention to adequate resourcing and the development of pedagogical leadership skills.
  • Junni, Tiina (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    The purpose of this research was to find out the experiences of pre-school teachers in the use of digital service related to positive pedagogy in pre-school education. The theoretical framework of the study consisted of description of pre-school education and positive pedagogy. In addition, it examined what similarities can be found in the contents of the pre-school education curriculum and positive pedagogy. Character strengths and strength pedagogy, as well as positive feedback, were presented as more specific concepts. The framework was further specified by defining the concepts of well-being, pedagogical documentation, and digital services. The research is a qualitative interview survey based on phenomenological analysis. The interviews were executed as individual interviews remotely using Microsoft Teams. A total of three early childhood education teachers were interviewed. Interviewees participated in the City of Espoo Early Childhood Education and Positive Learning Oy joint development project. Among other things, the project aimed to teach children strengths in character through a digital service, as well as help them identify them. According to the research results, the teachers had mainly positive experiences to Huomaa hyvä! tool in pre-school education. They thought it worked well in supporting children's identification of strengths. Teachers themselves felt that they had learned to identify children's strengths differently than before and understood that something in children's activities that they had previously experienced as negative could be the child's strength in the right situation. In addition, they found that when they set a goal for some strength, it increased significantly in the group. According to the teachers, the tool also worked well as a tool for positive feedback. They felt that the positive feedback encouraged the children to reflect on their own strengths and thus they also learned to recognize them. According to teachers Huomaa hyvä! the tool served well as a tool for pedagogical documentation. They felt it was important to be able to return to the moments of success they experienced later and deal with them together with the children. The tool also supported their work and various pre-teaching processes such as action planning, implementation and evaluation. They felt that the introduction of the digital service affected their way of working as a whole.
  • Halme Roosa (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    Objectives. The Finnish Education Evaluation Centre (FINEEC) has defined quality indicators for early childhood education and care (ECEC), which can be used to assess the quality of ECEC. According to the law (540/2018), ECEC is defined by a self-assessment obligation, which makes it possible to evaluate the pedagogical activities produced by ECEC staff. The study examined the quality of ECEC, from the perspective of quality process factors. The study was conducted based on self-assessments of ECEC staff. The aim of the study was to describe the factors that weaken the process quality of ECEC and to find out the effect of the educational background of ECEC staff on self-assessments. The study also examined development targets for the process quality of ECEC. Methods. The study was conducted in a mixed method manner using data and method triangulation. The research material was collected with an e-questionnaire. The survey was sent via social media to Facebook groups for ECEC staff. The study material consisted of 202 respondents and 260 open-ended responses. The research material was analyzed by appropriate methods using qualitative (content analysis) and quantitative (one-way analysis of variance) analysis. Results. The results of the study show that shortcomings in ECEC resources, professionalism and interprofessional co-operation were perceived as factors that weaken the process quality of ECEC. The results of the study also show that the self-assessments of highly educated staff differed from the self-assessments of vocational education staff, for one attribute. The research shows the need for comprehensive development work on the quality of early childhood education. Pedagogical activities in early childhood education must be enabled with sufficient resources and a well-functioning culture, and the well-being of staff must be safeguarded.
  • Björkman, Markus (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    Objectives. This article-based master’s thesis analyzes the different manifestations of autonomy that appear in Tove Jansson’s children’s book Comet in Moominland (1946). The objective is to describe and construe understanding of the expressions of different manifestations of autonomy by combining different perceptions of autonomy, inter alia appreciation of the philosophy of Immanuel Kant, Isaiah Berlin, and Veli-Matti Värri. Methods. The research was carried out as a qualitative analyzes. Aim was to reveal the essence of autonomy in the book by using the phenomenological-hermeneutical approach. The phenomenological-hermeneutics approach is understood in the study as an interpretation of the art of understanding. The study contributes an interpretation of the manifesting autonomy in the book. Results and conclusions. This thesis has provided a deeper insight into the manifestation of autonomy in the Moomin philosophies. This study has found that generally, it is possible to grow to a moral subject in the Moominvalley, it can be seen as the growth and responsibility of the Moomintroll for itself and its environment. The strengths of the Moomintroll and the entire Moomin world are empathy and openness, acceptance of others, which also have the potential to take responsibility for the current state of the world. The publication channel which has been chosen for the article: Reflections of autonomy, analyzing the revealing perspectives of autonomy in Tove Jansson´s Children book Comet in Moominland (1946) is Barnboken: Journal of Children's Literature Research. Article matches the focus of Barnboken ideally; article is a new approach to Tove Jansson’s children´s literature and educational philosophy, optimistically an innovative and creative interpretation of manifested autonomy.
  • Ahlholm, Mia (Helsingin yliopisto, 2018)
    The aim of the study was to investigate the effects of the Pieni Oppiva Mieli -intervention (MindUp™) in the day care centers children of 3 to 6 years of age on social competence as perceived by the staff and children's parents. In the study, social competence consisted of emotional symptoms, conduct problems, inattention, peer relationship problems, prosocial behavior and psychosocial wellbeing. The research questions are: 1. What is the children's social competence before and after the intervention? 2. How do the children differ on the basis of sex with respect to social competence before and after the intervention? 3. What are the differences in children's social competence before and after the intervention based on mother's or father's education? Previous studies have shown that mindfulness-based interventions on children have a positive effect on, for example self-regulation, emotional regulation, socio-cognitive skills, academic skills and social skills. There has been little research on the effects of socio-emotional programs on the young children's social competence, although various social skills training programs in early childhood are much in use. The study was part of the Pieni Oppiva Mieli -project at the University of Helsinki and was attended by 234 children from three different kindergartens in the metropolitan area. The study was conducted investigating the effects of a 30-week intervention on the day care group during the academic year 2016-2017. Strenghts and Difficulties form (SDQ-Fin) was used to investigate the difference between initial and final measurement, and it was combined with the information on the background information form, namely the gender of the child and the education of parents. The material was analyzed quantitatively by SPSS Statistics 24 -program using non-parametric tests as analyzing method; a Wilcoxon Signed-Rank Test, a Mann–Whitney U test, and a Kruskal–Wallis test. I also used a parametric t-test (Independent Samples) alongside the Mann–Whitney U test. The results indicate that the intervention might have positive effects on child's inattention, peer problems, prosocial behaviour and psychosocial wellbeing. Based on the answers provided by the staff, the results also indicate that the sex may have an impact on the initial and final measurement of conduct problems, inattention, prosocial behavior and psychosocial wellbeing. Based on parent's responses, the results are parallel, but narrower. Results of the boys were worse than the girls in all the sub-variables of social competence except for the peer problems. The research results of staff and parents of children differed from the impact of maternal and father's education on the child's social competence and development.
  • Mollgren-Gustavsson, Ingela (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    HELSINGIN YLIOPISTO – HELSINGFORS UNIVERSITET – UNIVERSITY OF HELSINKI Tiedekunta/Osasto  Fakultet/Sektion  Faculty Kasvatustieteiden maisteriohjelma Laitos  Institution  Department Kasvatustiede Tekijä  Författare  Author Ingela Mollgren-Gustavsson Työn nimi  Arbetets titel  Title Kielelliset virikkeet varhaiskasvatuksessa ja esiopetuksessa Oppiaine Läroämne  Subject Varhaiskasvatus (VAKA) Työn laji  Arbetets art  Level Aika  Datum  Month and year Sivumäärä  Sidoantal  Number of pages Pro gradu-tutkielma Joulukuu 2020 70+14 Tiivistelmä  Referat  Abstract Tavoitteet. Varhaiskasvatussuunnitelman perusteiden mukaan toiminnassa on tuettava lasten kiinnostusta kieliin. Esiopetuksen opetussuunnitelman perusteissa korostetaan, että kieli on yhä enemmän oppimisen väline, jota käytetään viestinnässä ja ajattelussa. Tutkimukset ja kansallinen koulutuksen arviointikeskus ovat nostaneet esiin varhaiskasvatuksen ja esiopetuksen epätasaisen laadun. Puutteita on esimerkiksi lasten kielellisen kehityksen tukemisessa. Tässä tutkimuksessa halutaan siksi tuoda esiin sitä, kuinka kielelliset virikkeet toteutuvat varhaiskasvatuksessa ja esiopetuksessa. Tutkimuksessa halutaan myös selvittää, onko ”kielellistä kehitystä tukevasta toimintasuunnitelmasta” ollut konkreettista hyötyä yksiköiden kielellisessä työssä tutkimuksen kohteena olevassa kunnassa. Menetelmät. Tutkimusaineisto kerättiin kyselyillä. Kyselyt lähetettiin N=47 henkilölle, jotka työskentelivät erään Turunmaan kunnan varhaiskasvatuksessa ja esiopetuksessa. Vastausprosentti oli 70 %, N=33. Kysymyksien vastauksia analysoitiin kvantitatiivisesti sekä kvalitatiivisen sisällönanalyysin avulla. Tulokset ja johtopäätökset. Tutkimuksesta saadut tulokset havainnollistavat, että henkilöstön työskentely kielellisten virikkeiden parissa on monipuolista ja vaihtelevaa. Enemmistö henkilöstöstä tietää, että kirjat ovat erittäin tärkeitä lasten kielellisen kehityksen kannalta ja panostaa kirjojen sisällöstä keskustelemiseen. Yli puolet laulaa lauluja useita kertoja päivässä, kun taas loruja hyödynnetään vähemmän. Yli puolet henkilöstöstä hyödyntää työssään tablettia, pääasiassa kielellisen kehityksen edistämiseen. Suurin osa työntekijöistä on hyvin tietoisia omasta roolistaan kielellisenä esikuvana lapsille. Tutkimustulokset osoittavat, että ympäristössä voitaisiin panostaa enemmän teksteihin ja kirjaimiin, jotta lapset ymmärtäisivät niiden merkityksen. Lasten kielellisten taitojen dokumentointia tulisi tehostaa. Yli puolet raportoi, että ”kielellistä kehitystä tukeva toimintasuunnitelma” on vaikuttanut yksiköiden konkreettiseen työskentelyyn ja kertoo muuttaneensa laulujen, lorujen ja kirjojen parissa työskentelyä suunnitelman käyttöönoton jälkeen. Avainsanat  Nyckelord  Keywords varhaiskasvatus, esiopetus, kielelliset virikkeet, kieliympäristö, kieltä tukeva toiminta Säilytyspaikka  Förvaringsställe  Where deposited Helsingin yliopisto – Helda / E-thesis (opinnäytteet) Muita tietoja  Övriga uppgifter  Further information Ohjaaja: Solveig Cornèr
  • Laaksonen, Roosa-Maria (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    The exclusion starts during early childhood. A child’s withdrawal from their peer group has been associated with social exclusion that has implications for the child’s social and cognitive skills as well as overall well-being. Peer relationships and positive interaction with peers are central to children’s learning. Socially withdrawn children are at risk of being excluded from the social dimensions of peer activities. This thesis examines socially withdrawn children in Finnish early childhood education and especially the effects social withdrawal has on the child’s learning, emotions and physical activity. In addition, the effects of the withdrawn children’s social and self-regulatory skills and need for pedagogical support are examined. Research data was gathered using the Progressive Feedback method. Observations were conducted in 2,651 kindergarten groups from 19 municipalities in Finland from September 2017 to February 2021. The observation data included 201,951 observations of all activities in early childhood education between 8 AM to 4 PM. Observed children’s skills were assessed by the educational staff and children’s basic information (such as age and gender) were included. Quantitative multivariate methods were used to analyse the data. It was found that children’s social withdrawal occurs usually during free play indoors and outdoors. Routine activities included children’s social withdrawal in early childhood education settings as well. Withdrawn children usually had no focus in their activities or they were observed playing with toys. The child’s withdrawn orientation was characterized by low levels of involvement and physical activity as well as neutral and negative emotions. The impact of the peer group was found to be central to the child’s learning and well-being and supporting the withdrawn children in their efforts on joining the peer group activities is an important priority in developing early childhood education practices.