Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy
Human Development and Family Studies
Susan M. Hegland
Dahlia F. Stockdale
Census information and demographic predictions indicate that by the year 2000 one of three Americans will be a person of color. This changing cultural composition has fueled educators to restructure education for children. Specifically, numerous early childhood educators have embraced the notion of weaving a more cultural and antibias perspective into existing curricula for young children. To gain an understanding of early childhood education as it relates to multicultural and antibias sensitivity according to teachers' perceptions and classroom practices, this dissertation aims to (1) examine strands of literature under the auspices of early childhood education as it relates to education that is multicultural and antibias, and (2) examine the relationship between teachers' beliefs and observed classroom practices regarding the implementation of a curriculum that is multicultural and antibias;To examine early childhood teachers' beliefs and observed classroom practices, 252 teachers from rural mid-western communities were surveyed. Each teacher rated items that reflected their beliefs of importance and perceived skill levels regarding a curriculum that is multicultural and antibias. Thirty teachers were randomly selected for classroom observations followed by a 15-minute teacher interview to further examine the relationship among teachers' reported beliefs of importance, perceived skill levels, and observed teaching practices. Results indicated that early childhood teachers perceived a curriculum that is multicultural and antibias as high in importance and perceived their skill levels as moderate. Although early childhood teachers perceived a curriculum that is multicultural and antibias as high in importance and perceived their skill levels as moderate, their professed beliefs and skill levels were not correlated with their observed teaching practices. Early childhood teachers with more heterogeneous classes were found more likely to demonstrate classroom practices of a curriculum that is multicultural and antibias. Implications of findings and directions for future research are discussed.
Digital Repository @ Iowa State University, http://lib.dr.iastate.edu/
Valerie Jarvis Samuels
Samuels, Valerie Jarvis, "Teacher beliefs and classroom practices regarding a curriculum that is multicultural and antibias " (1994). Retrospective Theses and Dissertations. 11317.