Source: Journal of Early Childhood Teacher Education, Volume 32, Issue 4, 2011, pages 338-354.
The authors focus on preparing early childhood and early childhood special education preservice teachers for inclusive settings.
Integrating inclusive content throughout the teacher preparation program sets the expectation for inclusion in the schools.
The standards from the Division for Early Childhood of Council for Exceptional Children and the National Association for the Education of Young Children provide a framework to link inclusive content and fieldwork to preservice teacher experiences.
The use of inclusive sites for well sequenced and focused field experiences provides the opportunity for preservice teachers to develop skills and attitudes for teaching all children.
One institution's site-based methods courses, with preservice teachers in school sites for a significant portion of their coursework accompanied by their faculty members, enhanced the course content and preservice teaching at the sites.
Measures of self-perceptions of preservice teachers indicate significant growth in preservice teachers' confidence and skills for working with students with special needs through structured inclusive field experiences.