Exploring teachers’ pedagogy content knowledge (PCK) in practicing play-based curriculum: A study of kindergarten teachers in Hong Kong

Pui Chi Chrysa KEUNG, Chanel Kit Ho FUNG

Research output: Contribution to conferencePapers

Abstract

This paper is to investigate kindergarten teachers’ understanding of play and pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) in practicing play-based curriculum. Kindergarten teachers’ professional knowledge, particularly their PCK, has always been considered an important component in securing the quality of early childhood education (Hedges & Cullen, 2005, Sheridan et al., 2009, Wood & Bennett, 2000). This study is built upon the work of Shulman (1986, 1987). Among seven domains of knowledge, PCK blends both content and pedagogy, encompasses both teachers’ understanding of content areas and enactments, with aims to develop better practices for children. This specific domain constitutes knowledge base of teachers to warrant the quality of play-based curricular practice. This study invited 19 kindergartens and 29 teachers. Using the interpretivist approach, qualitative data were collected through classroom observations and teacher focus group interviews to gain a deeper understanding about the kinds of PCK embedded in their actual practice. The present study has met the university’s research ethics. Informed consent has also been obtained from kindergarten principals, teachers and parents of the participating children. Our findings indicated that kindergarten teachers’ situated form of knowledge appeared as significant as their PCK in shaping their professional practice of play-based curriculum. Teachers conceived that ongoing complexities and dilemmas that circumscribing their practice required them to constantly frame, adapt and modify pedagogical strategies. Findings revealed that teachers’ knowledge on play-based pedagogy is contextually bounded. This study gives insights into how teachers develop situated wisdom to complement their PCK in constructing authentic play-based learning in classes. Copyright © 2018 28th EECERA Conference.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2018

Citation

Keung, C. P. C., & Fung, C. K. H. (2018, August). Exploring teachers’ pedagogy content knowledge (PCK) in practicing play-based curriculum: A study of kindergarten teachers in Hong Kong. Paper presented at The 28th EECERA Annual Conference: ‘Early Childhood Education, Families and Communities’, Budapest, Hungary.

Keywords

  • Teacher knowledge
  • Play-based practice
  • Pedagogical content knowledge
  • Professional development
  • Early childhood education

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