CARE consortium meeting in December 2015

CARE quality and good classroom practices conference. The CARE consortium met in Reggio Emilia, Italy, in December 10-11. The main topic of discussion was the results of the video case studies conducted in nine European countries (Denmark, England, Germany, Greece, Finland, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland and Portugal).

The video study looks into the culture-specific ways in which curriculum and pedagogy are shaped in Europe. The first results revealed interesting patterns. For example, whereas observed emotional quality is rather high across European countries, differences exist with regard to child-centeredness and instructional quality.

In some countries and ECEC centers, instruction seems more smoothly integrated with child-centeredness than elsewhere. Likewise, there are differences in the balance sought between emergent academics instruction and play, with examples showing that integration of play and academics is possible.

A cultural theme emerged as well: the importance of working in small groups within a larger classroom and sensitivity of educators to group processes, belongingness and peer interaction, which seems to be underemphasized in internationally and widely used quality frameworks.

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