The purpose of this study is to examine preservice teachers’ beliefs about childhood in an attempt to see how they may support an active, participatory role for children in early childhood education. The authors highlight three important conclusions from this research. First, preservice teachers already have a number of beliefs that explain children’s behavior, haracteristics, potentials, and needs when they enter university education. Second, beliefs about childhood vary among preservice teachers and some of their beliefs are related to known scientific theories about childhood or to existing typologies. Third, despite this variation, there are specific ontological and epistemological presuppositions underlying these beliefs that construct a framework theory for understanding childhood.