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Cultural influence on peer relationships in early childhood settings

journal contribution
posted on 2011-11-16, 00:00 authored by Karen GuoKaren Guo
This paper presents a cultural perspective of young children’s peer relationships. Through reporting on a study of a group of Chinese immigrant children’s learning experiences with peers of the same cultural backgrounds in English dominant early childhood contexts, it reveals that the sharing of a similar cultural heritage may play an important role in the development of relationships for young children in diverse cultural learning communities. This paper is written from the perspectives of socioculture and culture theory. Central to my argument is the contextual dimension of culture. This dimension provides an explanatory structure for understanding immigrant children’s formation of home-culture oriented peer togetherness and peer culture within the paradigm of English dominant spheres. My position is to recognize that the children’s responses to peers are both subject to the influences of their home cultures, and the relationship between different cultures. The notion of cultural relationship is important in this paper, leading to the suggestion that early childhood settings should create an enabling and empowering sociocultural milieu that provides immigrant children with opportunities for intercultural ways of learning and development.

History

Journal

International journal of equity and innovation in early childhood (IJEIEC)

Volume

9

Issue

1

Pagination

1 - 16

Publisher

Melbourne University

Location

Melbourne, Vic.

ISSN

1448-6318

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2011, Melbourne University

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