Term of Award
Doctor of Education in Curriculum Studies (Ed.D.)
Document Type and Release Option
Dissertation (open access)
Department of Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading
Ming Fang He
Committee Member 1
Committee Member 2
Committee Member 3
This study explores how kindergartners' talks and drawings inform our ways of developing a curriculum of caring and imagination. The mandates of kidnergartners' curriculum tend to emphasize children's mastery of literacy skills while ignoring their natural development and imagination. Author's abstract: This study explores how kindergartners' talks and drawings inform our ways of developing a curriculum of caring and imagination. The mandates of kindergartners' curriculum tend to emphasize children's mastery of literacy skills while ignoring their natural development and imagination. There is a need for developing a curriculum that embraces children's diverse needs, releases their imagination, and cultivates their highest potential. There are three strands for the theoretical framework of the study: John Dewey's (1963) theory of education, experience, and imagination; Lev Vygotsky's (1978) theory of social constructivism; and Nel Noddings' (1992) ethic of care. Through children's talks and drawings, literacy and writing skills were developed in a natural setting with age appropriate social interactions facilitated by the teacher. The exchanges between, and encounters with, the teacher researcher and participant kindergartners and their peers provided an arena in which child oriented discussions were encouraged and imagination was cultivated. The findings of this study present powerful evidence that a curriculum of care and imagination should presuppose any standards devised for teaching literacy and writing skills. This study was significant for children, teachers, parents, administrators, and policy makers. For children, the significance of this study was a confirmation that children must be placed in the center of the educational experience. For teachers, this study helps to construct caring early childhood practices of literacy development. For parents, the study reveals the importance of creating an environment where children's imagination can flourish. For administrators, this study reveals that pre-packaged kits might not be the best way to teach children. For policy makers, this study provides an argument for creating a curriculum of care and imagination for kindergartners in the era of standardization. I sincerely hope that kindergarten teachers, educators, parents, and policy makers will work together to develop a curriculum of caring and imagination for kindergartners not only to educate kindergartners to become good citizens of the United States but also good citizens of the world.
Aliotta, Lisa Audet, "How Kindergartners' Talks and Drawings Inform Our Ways of Developing a Curriculum of Caring and Imagination" (2006). Electronic Theses & Dissertations. 505.