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Novels, nests and other provocations: emergent literacy curriculum production in a childcare centre

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In a bid to identify and gain analytic insight into the make-up and dynamics of kindergarten literacy curricula in an era of early childhood education and care reform, this study was designed to trace how classroom literacy curricula were produced in a kindergarten in a childcare centre in Ontario, Canada. Drawing on actor-network theory’s (ANT) definition of curriculum as a network effect and understandings of literacy from multiliteracies theory, this case study using ethnographic tools focused on the ways in which children’s interests and funds of knowledge (i.e. their linguistic, modal, epistemic and cultural resources) were implicated in the production of curriculum in a kindergarten milieu outside of school. Data were collected through observation, interview and document collection methods and were analysed through an ANT approach. Findings identified actors believed to be involved in literacy curriculum production which included an emergent curricular orientation, novels, educators’ understandings of children’s interests and funds of knowledge and materials and life forms from the natural world. The findings also offer a rich illustration of emergent literacy curriculum in action characterized by multimodal classroom literacy events and featuring Read-Aloud.

Keywords: Early years curriculum; early literacy; emergent curriculum; funds of knowledge

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2014-01-02

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