EjSBS - The European Journal of Social & Behavioural Sciences

The European Journal of Social & Behavioural Sciences

Online ISSN: 2301-2218
European Publisher

Visual Arts Education and the Diverse Professional Identities of Kindergarten Teachers


The objective of the study was to examine current pedagogical practices in Finnish early childhood education. Our purpose was to cast light on how kindergarten teachers implement visual arts education in day-care environments. Finnish kindergarten teachers become qualified through two routes: bachelor studies in educational sciences at university or bachelor studies in social services at universities of applied sciences. We gathered qualitative data by interviewing five kindergarten teachers in five day-care centres in the Helsinki metropolitan area during the spring of 2014. The data were analysed qualitatively on the basis of themes, and the results were reduced to reveal the variation underlying the data. Through these findings we constructed two approaches to visual arts education, naming them the “instrumentally focused approach” and “art-focused approach”. We hope that the study will help in designing better curricula for BA studies for future kindergarten teachers at both types of universities. We also hope we have provided new insights into the question of what high-quality visual arts education in early childhood is.

Keywords: Visual artsearly childhood educationcultural educationprofessional identity

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This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

About this article

Published online: 20.01.2015
Pages: 25-34
Publisher: Future Academy
In: Volume 12, Issue 1
DOI: 10.15405/ejsbs.150
Online ISSN: 2301-2218
Article Type: Original Research
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