Learning and Teaching Positive Guidance Skills: Lessons from Early Childhood Practicum Students

Jul. 16, 2008

Source: Journal of Early Childhood Teacher Education, Volume 29, Issue 3 July 2008 , pages 204 – 221

Empirical studies of early childhood educators' experiences with learning and implementing positive guidance skills are absent from the extant literature. This study explored this topic with 63 junior and senior level university students who were involved in concurrent instructional lecture and practicum experiences. Participants defined “positive guidance” diversely with definitions ranging from accurate to inaccurate.

Most participants held inaccurate or somewhat inaccurate definitions both before and after class. Participants considered several positive guidance skills difficult to master, including conflict resolution, positive language usage, setting and following through with limits, and offering choices. They rated positive language usage and conflict resolution as two of the four most improved skills during the course and addressing children's individual needs and confidence as most improved after the course ended. The majority of participants cited the hands-on aspects of class and lab as being important in contributing to positive attitudes about

Updated: Sep. 04, 2008