Reading Lives and Practices of Singapore Teachers and the Use of Multicultural Children's Literature to promote Socio-emotional Learning

Project Number
OER 15/14 RB

Project Duration
January 2015 - February 2017

Status
In-Progress

Abstract
This research project aims to investigate the reading lives and practices of teachers in Singapore and their impact on promoting socio-emotional learning (SEL) and inclusive practices in the classroom. Specifically, it focuses on the reading habits, attitudes and practices of pre-service, in-service and higher degree students of NIE, their understanding and awareness of the role of multicultural children's texts in promoting SEL and inclusive classroom practices, and the role of school and public libraries in helping teachers to identify relevant children's texts to achieve these learning aims. A third research aim seeks to identify dominant SEL themes in multicultural picture books published in the last 50 years. On the one hand, the focus on investigating teachers as readers is premised on the fact that teachers' beliefs and reading habits influence instructional practices, student achievement, and motivation for life-long reading habits among students. On the other hand, the focus on examining the impact of teacher beliefs and habits on SEL and inclusive practices in the classroom is broadly framed within an understanding of multiculturalism as a political necessity in Singapore, thus the need to investigate teachers' awareness and use of multicultural texts to facilitate deeper learning through social and emotional development and inclusive classroom practices. In this connection, this research project aims to address three broad questions, the first concerning the reading habits, attitudes and practices of teachers and how they influence classroom practice, the second concerning teachers' understanding and awareness of multicultural texts as tools for promoting good learning classroom practices, and third concerning dominant SEL themes in multicultural texts published in the last 50 years. To address the first two questions, a survey questionnaire and in-depth narrative interviews will be deployed. To address the third, an archival or document study will be undertaken. Data in this research will inform the development of a multicultural text-set for teachers in Singapore that specifically looks into how picture books can be used to facilitate SEL help develop inclusive practices.

Funding Source
NIE

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