Perceptions Regarding the Care and Education of Children from Birth to Age Three among Students of Early Childhood Education: Changes between Pre-training and Post-training

Gila Russo-Zimet, Itzhak Gilat


Many theoreticians focus on understanding the belief system regarding the mind of the learner – The Mind Theory. Olson & Brunner (1996) referred to this belief system as "folk psychology". They named the processes required to promote learners' knowledge and understanding "folk pedagogy". In their opinion, folk pedagogy reflects the learners' folk psychology. In other words, the study of folk psychology has focused on how everyday people—those without formal training in the various academic fields of science—go about attributing mental states. This domain has primarily been centered on intentional states reflective of an individual's beliefs and desires.

The present study set up to characterize the folk psychology (contains expressions and summaries of various settings as a way of informally shaping quite general meanings or organizing experience) and the folk pedagogy, which deals with where, when and why people teach or educate one another in various ways for the sake of making out of things (Olson & Bruner, 1996) in early childhood education students with respect to education and care during the first three years of life and examine whether these views change during the course of their formal education.

The sample comprised of 379 students of education majoring in early childhood education at three colleges in Israel. Data was gathered by a structured questionnaire examining five domains: the impact of year of life on child development, domains affecting child development, care and educational settings, care and educational methods and the role of caregivers. The findings reveal that the perceived influence of family care centers and daycare centers influence on child development decreases between the beginning and the end of their studies. The perceived effectiveness of coping through awareness increased, while strict coping methods were perceived as less effective after the training.

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Journal of Education and Training Studies  ISSN 2324-805X (Print)   ISSN 2324-8068 (Online)

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