Reading aloud in preschool - language developmental work and cultural involvement

A female teacher reading a book to a group of a children.

The purpose of the project is to generate new knowledge about read-aloud in preschool. This activity is considered critical to introducing young children to important cultural tools and practices (language use, vocabulary, discourses, narrative and values). How preschool teachers manage to engage children in such matters and how children participate in these activates are therefore vital to know about.

Participation in this kind of activity is understood as critical to social justice, and we will therefore also be investigating whether children who do not master the majority language are given ample support to partake in these activities. To this end, we will study read-aloud activities in preschools with an emphasis on how these activities evolve and children participate (and perhaps change their participation) over time.

We will also interview preschool teachers about their didactical considerations when planning and following-up read-aloud activities. The methods employed will be video observations of read-aloud activities and interviews with preschool teachers.

In recent years, the Swedish government has put increased emphasis on reading and language teaching and learning already in preschool. This has also been emphasized in the recently revised curriculum. Read-aloud is considered a critical practice to introducing children to language and reading, and in extension many other forms of knowledge that such practices are fertile grounds for engaging children in.