Exploring early childhood professionals' beliefs and practices about teaching and learning
Corine M. Patricia Rivalland
Few research projects have captured the voices of childcare professionals about their personal beliefs in relation to teaching and learning. Using a qualitative case study approach with an emphasis on social constructivism, this descriptive study aimed to understand beliefs and practices as part of an underlying system, rather than as separate constructs influencing each other. In this paper I argue that Fish's (1998) 'iceberg' of professional practice could not explain the complexity of the interplay between belief and practices. Further, I argue that, for these professionals, this interplay was closely related to the depth of belief within the individual belief system as understood by Rokeach (1968). The study indicated that Rokeach's belief system used in conjunction with Fish's 'iceberg' of professional practice provides a deeper understanding of how beliefs are organised within a system and how different levels of beliefs relate to practices differently.
Australian Journal of Early Childhood Volume 32 No 1 March 2007, pp. 30-37.