An early child education center at IU is part of a new study, Pedagogies of Care for Toddlers in Four Cultures, that will examine the care and education of one-year-olds in group settings. Mary McMullen, Professor of Early Childhood Education, is one of four researchers around the world that created 15-minute video documentaries capturing key events in the average day in a classroom for one-year-olds in their countries. The documentaries were then screened and discussed by parents and professional staff in each country. After analyzing the videos and screening events, the researchers will work together on a cross-cultural comparison. The researchers will also examine the different ways professionals care for and educate their youngest citizens and how those practices are influenced by the values and beliefs of each culture.
"Toddlers never cease to amaze me with their zest for life and learning, their incredible capabilities, and their capacity to give and receive love,” McMullen said. “These characteristics seem to hold true across the four countries in this study, but the ways caregivers and teachers respond to them and the philosophies and policies that guide their practices differ. My colleagues and I are very excited as we consider, ‘What can we learn from one another?’”
Campus View Child Care Center was chosen because of its reputation as a high-quality program. The nationally-accredited center cares for children ages six weeks through three years old, and prides itself on its dedicated teachers and their passion about the well-being of young children and families.
“This is an incredibly important study which will provide us with information about how culture can affect the care and education of very young children,” Tim Dunnuck, Director of IU Early Childhood Education Services, said. “We are thrilled to have one of our Indiana University programs be part of it and to also represent the United States.”
McMullen is joined in the project by Sacha Powell from Canterbury Christ Church University in England, Jean Rockel and Maria Cooper from the University of Auckland in New Zealand, and Carrey Siu Tik-Sze from the Education University of Hong Kong.