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Title: Our Decision, Their Lives: Adults' Construction of Pre-School Children's Lives in Singapore
Keywords: pre-school education, childhood, family, Singapore, childcare, kindergarten
Issue Date: 11-Aug-2009
Citation: SIM I LIN MELISSA (2009-08-11). Our Decision, Their Lives: Adults' Construction of Pre-School Children's Lives in Singapore. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Since 2000, Singapore's early childhood industry has seen many policy changes, and the number of centres both pre-school and enrichment centres catering to the industry has increased significantly. A simple search on the Directory of Family and Community Services, returns 747 centres for Child Care Services, and 492 centres for Kindergarten Services (MCYS, 2004). This is excluding all other educational services for enrichment purposes. The pervasiveness of the pre-school industry and the impact that education has on the lives of all children growing up in Singapore makes it an interesting subject to study.

This thesis focuses on adults and their expectations of early childhood education. It has two aims: first, I seek to shed some light on the context of childhood in Singapore, from the perspective of adults; and second, I will attempt to offer new understandings towards the sociology of childhood by examining the expectations of childhood through the integration of the analysis of three separate groups of adults: the government authorities, teachers, and parents. By studying the changes in the early childhood industry, I argue that while there has been increasing curricularization of children's lives, there has also been a shift towards a child-oriented approach; both of which are incongruent with each other. There is a great degree of dissonance both in the experience of teaching and the methods of parenting. These discrepancies are significant in the lives of children since it means that they may go through apparently different experiences of childhood in terms of educational intensity, in spite of the general expectation that they all experience a similar trajectory of pre-school education.
Appears in Collections:Master's Theses (Open)

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