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Understanding preschool emergent science in a cultural historical context through Activity Theory
Örebro universitet. (Science in Preschool)
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Science and Mathematics Education. (UmSER, Science in Preschool)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7273-5442
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Science and Mathematics Education. (UmSER, Science in Preschool)
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of applied educational science. (Science in Preschool)
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2016 (English)In: European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, ISSN 1350-293X, E-ISSN 1752-1807, Vol. 24, no 4, 567-580 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aim of this study is to explore how cultural factors interact with preschool teachers’ shaping of activities with science content, and also how Activity Theory (AT) as a theoretical framework can be useful for examining interrelations within preschool systems. Qualitative data was collected from three preschools in the form of guided group discussions with preschool teachers, observations and video recordings of activities, and stimulated recall discussions based on the recorded practices. The preschools displayed diverse approaches for experiencing and learning science, some with great creativity. In all preschools learning was integrated with care, upbringing and play. To support children’s interest and confidence was central. How science activities were shaped mainly depended on how children’s interests were allowed to govern practice. The use of AT as an analytical tool was proven to be effective in identifying the elements, relationships and tensions crucial for understanding the framing of science activities. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 24, no 4, 567-580 p.
Keyword [en]
Activity Theory (AT), preschool practice, preschool culture, science teaching, emergent science
National Category
Didactics
Research subject
didactics of natural science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-110714DOI: 10.1080/1350293X.2014.978557ISI: 000380367400007OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-110714DiVA: diva2:864343
Projects
Förskolans praktik i mötet med naturvetenskap
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 721 2011 5657
Available from: 2015-10-26 Created: 2015-10-26 Last updated: 2016-09-14Bibliographically approved

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Areljung, SofieDue, KarinEkström, KennethOttander, Christina
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Department of Science and Mathematics EducationDepartment of applied educational science
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