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Starting Strong: Curricula and pedagogies in early childhood education and care

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Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Directorate for Education
Publication Date: 
6 May 2004

Excerpt from report:

"Curricula and pedagogies in early childhood education and care" is an output of the Thematic Review of Early Childhood Education and Care Policy, a project launched by OECD's Education Committee in March 1998. The impetus for the project came from the 1996 Ministerial meeting on "Making lifelong learning a reality for all." In their communiqué, the Education Ministers assigned a high priority to the goal of improving access to and quality in early childhood education and care, with the aim of strengthening the foundations of lifelong learning (OECD, 1998). To date, twenty-one countries have volunteered to participate in the review: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Finland, France, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Korea, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States. A detailed description of the review's objectives, analytical framework, and methodology is provided in OECD (1998).

The present report stems from a workshop for the national coordinators of early childhood policy hosted by the Ministry of Education and Science in Stockholm, 11th &em; 13th June 2003. The topic for discussion was "Curricula and pedagogies in early childhood education". Four well-known ECEC curricula were presented by their authors at the work-shop: Reggio Emilia by Dr. Carlina Rinaldi, Te Whãriki by Professor Helen May, Experiential Education by Professor Ferre Laevers and High/Scope by Dr. Dave Weikart. Since the work-shop was held in Sweden and introduced by the Minister of Preschool, Lena Hallengren, the Swedish Curriculum is also presented in this paper by Professor Ingrid Pramling, who &em; in association with Ph.D. Sonja Sheridan and Ph.D. Pia Williams from Göteborg University - also prepared the second chapter of this report.

The report outlines each of these curricula, using in so far as possible the written documents supplied by the speakers.