Immigrant-Early childhood educator's experience of working with immigrant children and their families: arts-informed narrative inquiry self-study
thesisposted on 22.05.2021, 11:45 by Oi Ling Helen Kwok
Early years educational settings are often the first social environment that new immigrant children and their families engage in. Research in the field of education shows that immigrant children and their families are often best served by the educators, who themselves, are also immigrants. It is believed that immigrant educators are culturally knowledgeable and responsive to the needs of the children due to the shared immigration experiences and/or mother language. To gain a better insight into an immigrant-Early Childhood Educator’s experience of working with immigrant children and their families, I engage in a self-study using Connelly and Clandinin’s Narrative Inquiry. By engaging in Narrative Reflective Process, a series of creative art activities as data collection, I gather and reflect on my lived experiences to deepen my understanding into what may be most significant to immigrants. Three narrative patterns (challenges in a new home, a sense of belonging, perseverance) emerge within and across the told stories. Through my inquiry I invite all Early Childhood Educators to consider these in their own practice, as well as to reflect upon their own personal-professional experiences, through creative self expression approaches, and so to ponder how their values and beliefs might inform their professional practice.