Johanna Einarsdottir

Pre-school Education, Teacher Education, Primary Education

15.94

Publications

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    Maryanne Theobald · Susan Danby · Jóhanna Einarsdóttir · Jane Bourne

    Full-text · Article · Nov 2015
  • Hrönn Pálmadóttir · Jóhanna Einarsdóttir
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    ABSTRACT: The article seeks to explore the relationship between the researcher and children aged from one to three years old. The findings are drawn from a research project in an Icelandic preschool where video recordings were used as the main method. The aim of the research project was to understand children's lived experiences when creating their communities in play. The study was based on phenomenological approaches of Merleau-Ponty (1945/1962). The findings indicate that video recordings have considerable potential to provide insight into children's lived experiences, as well as reveal the importance of reflections during the research process. Three main themes emerged and provided insights into the relations between the researcher and the children during the research process: (1) assent; (2) exploring the role of the researcher; and (3) involving the researcher in play. In the article examples will be drawn from the research project to illustrate the ethical challenges in the relations between the researcher and the children.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2015 · European Early Childhood Education Research Journal
  • Hrönn Pálmadóttir · Jóhanna Einarsdóttir
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    ABSTRACT: This article aims to explore young children's (from one to three years old) perspectives of the role and pedagogy of educators in play in an Icelandic preschool. The intention is to explore the meaning that children put into involving educators in their play and whether the children experience educators' actions as a resource for their play. The study is based on a phenomenological approach. Data consist of video recordings and field notes of 46 children, from one to three years old, as well as eight educators. Four main categories that illustrate children's perspectives on the role of the educators emerged: (a) assistance connected to play situations and play material, (b) confirmation of competence, (c) support connected to children's social interactions, and (d) participation in play and playful actions. The findings reveal that children's perspectives and experiences in their own life-worlds in play can be considered an important dimension that contributes to changes in the pedagogical practices that are emphasised in curriculum.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2015 · Early Child Development and Care
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of the study is to explore how Nordic Early Childhood Education and Care policies frame values education in preschools with a special focus on the values of democracy, caring and competence. The study is part of a larger Nordic project, Values education in Nordic preschools: Basis of education for tomorrow, the aim of which is to explore values education from various perspectives, policy levels, institutional levels and personal levels. The study applies Habermas’s theoretical ideas of communicative actions, lifeworld, and the system. Here the focus is on the system level, namely, values in national curriculum guidelines that serve as the basis of pedagogical practices in preschools in the Nordic countries. Thematic research analysis described by Braun and Clarke inspired the qualitative analysis of the documents. In addition, a quantitative language-based approach was applied to the study. Keywords related with democratic, caring and competence values were selected. The findings reveal different dimensions and meanings of the three value fields, such as democracy as being and/or becoming; care as fulfilment of basic needs and an ethical relationship; and competence values as learning for sociality and academic skills.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2015 · International Journal of Early Years Education
  • Johanna Einarsdottir
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of the study was to examine critically the roles and pedaogogy of preschool teachers from the perspectives of five- to six–year-old children who had extensive experience of being full day preschool children from the age of two. The participants were 32 children in the oldest preschool group in two preschools in Reykjavik. Data was gathered through photo supported interviews with the children. Photos that the children took themselves were used as a motivation and basis for conversations. The theoretical foundations of the study were the ideology of childhood studies in which childhood is viewed as an important period, contingent on culture, time, and context. The findings of the study show that according to children's conversations about the photos they took in their preschools, their views on the roles of preschool teachers can be divided into; on one hand their interaction with the children, such as: (1) interacting with the children; (2) watching them; (3) supporting; (4) teaching; and (5) helping them. On the other hand, other duties (involving interactions with others) were mentioned. When the children were asked what they liked and did not like about their preschool teachers many of them talked about things that they did or did not do in terms of activities. Some children mentioned also their behaviors or personal traits.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2014 · European Early Childhood Education Research Journal
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    Kristín Norðdahl · and Jóhanna Einarsdóttir
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    ABSTRACT: This study aims to enhance awareness of what young children want to do outside and their preferences regarding their outdoor environment. Views of children as active participants, the affordance of the environment and the importance of place for children’s learning constitute the theoretical background of the study. The study was part of a research and development project on education for sustainable development in which preschool children and compulsory school children participated in decision-making about how their common school ground should be constructed. Data were gathered through observations and interviews with children and teachers. The findings show that the children wanted to challenge themselves as well as to be secure, explore things, be in contact with others, find or create nests and enjoy beautiful things outdoors. The children highly valued the natural environment and liked diversity in playground equipment.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · Journal of Adventure Education & Outdoor Learning
  • Susanna Kinnunen · Johanna Einarsdottir
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    ABSTRACT: This paper explores the nature of young children’s aesthetic experience and the ways in which they narrate their life changes within spontaneous drawing stories. The drawing stories were generated during a period of close to 1 year in the home of a mother with two young children. The theoretical and methodological basis of this study is narrative research and the view of children is as competent participants, constructing the knowledge of their childhood. The study highlights the importance of taking young children’s holistic and embodied way of living into account. It also emphasizes that young children’s aesthetic experience, often arising in action, is a vital part of their construction of knowledge. Methodologically and theoretically, this study points out the importance of listening to children’s multimodal narrating as a tool for understanding young children’s processes of responding to life changes, and for enabling young children’s voices in supportive ways.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2013 · International Journal of Early Childhood
  • Johanna Einarsdottir

    No preview · Article · Sep 2013 · European Early Childhood Education Research Journal
  • Sue Dockett · Johanna Einarsdóttir · Bob Perry
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    ABSTRACT: Participatory approaches to engaging in research with young children place a great deal of emphasis on children's rights to choose whether or not they wish to be involved. A number of recent studies have reported a range of strategies both to inform children of their research rights and to establish options for checking children's understanding of these rights throughout the research process. This paper seeks to move the debate around children's informed agreement to participate forward by considering the ways in which children might indicate their dissent – their desire not to participate – at various stages of the research process. Drawing on examples from Iceland and Australia, involving children aged two–six years, the paper explores children's verbal and non-verbal interactions and the ways in which these have been used, and interpreted, to indicate dissent. Reflection on these examples raises a number of questions and identifies several tensions, as well as offering some suggestions for ways in which researchers can recognise children's decisions to opt out of research participation.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2012 · International Journal of Early Years Education
  • Jóhanna Einarsdóttir

    No preview · Article · Aug 2012 · Childhood Education
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    Johanna Einarsdottir
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    ABSTRACT: The article describes a collaborative action research in a preschool in Reykjavik. The participants were two preschool teachers who collaborated with researchers at the University of Iceland. The project was set up as a professional development course for the teachers. Emphasis was placed on continuity in children's education, integration of play and learning, and the connection between play and emerging literacy. Data were gathered using video recordings, photos, interviews, observations, notes from meetings, documents, and diaries. The findings indicate that participation in this action research empowered the preschool teachers and influenced their practices and ideas. They became more aware of the value of play in children's learning. They did not, however, change their former practices in which they worked on literacy during specific, well-defined periods: their beliefs and practices in this regard seemed to be constrained by traditions in which play and learning are separate entities.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2012 · Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research
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    Deborah Harcourt · Johanna Einarsdottir
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    ABSTRACT: Over recent years, there has been increasing attention to the importance of involving children and listening to their voices and perspectives in research. The purpose of this monograph is to draw upon exemplary research with young children that is being undertaken in partnership with academics across the globe. The articles also seek to examine some of the critical issues and ethical dilemmas in this unique research paradigm. We are pleased to present discussion from a diverse range of research settings which includes Sweden, Iceland, Italy, Northern Ireland, the United Kingdom and Australia. The underlying philosophy of each article is that all young children have the competence to engage in research as sophisticated thinkers and communicators and that the inclusion of children's views are pivotal if we are to understand their life worlds.
    Preview · Article · Sep 2011 · European Early Childhood Education Research Journal
  • Deborah Harcourt · Johanna Einarsdottir

    No preview · Article · Sep 2011 · European Early Childhood Education Research Journal
  • Johanna Einarsdottir
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    ABSTRACT: Research Findings: The aim of this study was to shed light on how children perceive the differences between their early childhood setting and primary school and what they felt they learned when they started primary school. The children's playschool teachers were co-researchers, participating in the data generation, as well as participants in the study. The study was premised on a view of children as strong and competent actors in their own lives and a belief that the voices of children should be heard and taken seriously. Children's perspectives were elicited through group interviews and children's drawings a few months after they started primary school. Practice or Policy: The results of this study indicate that the children had the experience, knowledge, and ability to reflect on both their playschool experience and the transition to primary school and therefore that their voices should be heard and listened to by adults, thereby enabling children's perspectives to influence policy and practice.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2011 · Early Education and Development
  • Johanna Einarsdottir
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    ABSTRACT: The current study was conducted with groups of first grade children (aged six years) in two primary schools in Reykjavik in an endeavour to ascertain how they recalled and reconstructed their playschool experiences. The children's playschool teachers were co-researchers participating in the data generation; they were, at the same time participants in the study. The teachers' views on their encounters with the children during the research and on how the children recollected their playschool lives were also recorded. The study is based on a view of childhood as a social construction, and children as active participants and subjects constructing their own learning. Young children are viewed as competent and capable of not only participating and expressing their views, but also influencing their own lives and environment. Through group interviews and drawings, the children expressed their likes and dislikes in playschool. The most memorable activity was generally outdoor play, and relations with other children were the main source of happiness and sorrow. Children's lives are affected by the social context and key adults. The results of this study show that the participating playschool teachers and children co-constructed the playschool experience. By listening to multiple voices and perspectives the study endeavours to inform and challenge practice.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2011 · European Early Childhood Education Research Journal
  • Johanna Einarsdóttir
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    ABSTRACT: Considerable change has taken place in Icelandic early childhood education during the past few decades. Preschool, from being geared primarily towards children with evident social needs, has become all but universal. The aim of this study was to shed light on Icelandic parents' views on their children's preschool education and to examine how their views harmonize with the nation's preschool policy. The participants in this study, 43 parents of five‐ and six‐year‐old children in three preschools in Reykjavík, participated in focus‐group interviews concerning the preschool curriculum. The results indicate that the parents' main expectation of the preschools was that they should support the children's social development; the way in which the preschool day was organized, and the content of the curriculum seemed to be less important to them. Parents wanted their children to have the opportunity not only to enjoy themselves as individuals, but to learn self‐reliance and respect for other people. Care‐giving and attentiveness of the staff were more important than the teaching of knowledge and skills. These views are compatible with the social pedagogical tradition, the Icelandic Preschool Act, and the National Curriculum Guidelines for Preschools.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2010 · Early Years
  • Johanna Einarsdottir
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    ABSTRACT: This article describes a study with first grade children and their views on the primary school curriculum, as well as their influence on decision-making in school. The study was conducted with 20 six- and seven-year-old children in one primary school in Reykjavik, Iceland. The data gathered includes varied research methods such as group interviews, children's photographs and children's drawings to elicit the children's perspectives and opinions. Findings indicated that most of the children saw reading and mathematics as the main function of the first grade curriculum and the main role of the teachers is to teach these subjects. There were individual differences among the children in regards to their likes and dislikes in school. However, many children mentioned free time, recess and playing with other children as the most enjoyable part of school, while reading and mathematics were singled out as the most difficult and boring parts. The participating children did not experience democracy in school and did not find that they had any influence on the school curriculum.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2010 · European Early Childhood Education Research Journal
  • Sue Dockett · Johanna Einarsdottir · Bob Perry
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    ABSTRACT: There is a need to reflect on both the processes and outcomes of the range of approaches aimed at promoting children’s engagement in research, with the specific intent of listening to children’s voices. This article considers some of the ethical tensions we have experienced when engaging children in research about their prior-to-school and school environments and their perspectives of the transitions between these environments. Examples from projects conducted in Iceland and Australia are drawn upon to illustrate these tensions and, to reflect on the strategies and questions we have developed to guide our engagement with children. This article raises issues rather than offering simple solutions. We suggest that there are a number of contextual and relational variables that guide our research interactions, and no ‘one best solution’ applicable to all contexts. Our aim in sharing these tensions is to stimulate further debate and discussions around children’s participation in research.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2009 · Journal of Early Childhood Research
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    Johanna Einarsdottir · Sue Dockett · Bob Perry
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    ABSTRACT: The importance of listening to children’s perspectives has been emphasised in a wide range of recent research, using a variety of strategies. This paper explores the use of drawing as a strategy to engage with young children around the topic of starting school. It describes the approaches we have used, examines the benefits and challenges we have encountered and discusses implications of using drawings as a strategy for engaging with young children (aged 4–6 years) in research.
    Preview · Article · Feb 2009 · Early Child Development and Care
  • Wendy Schiller · Johanna Einarsdottir

    No preview · Article · Feb 2009 · Early Child Development and Care

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