Kindergarten Practice: The Situated Socialization of Minority Parents
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionNordic Journal of Comparative and International Education (NJCIE). 2018, 2 (1), 39-54. 10.7577/njcie.2238
Almost all parents in Norway use kindergarten and part of becoming a kindergarten parent is learning the routines of the particular institution. Thus, kindergarten parents go through a socialization process, learning amongst other how to deliver and pick up their children. Building on ten days observations of bringing and delivery scenes in a kindergarten, it is here suggested that this socialization process may have a racialized character. The kindergarten in question had special delivery routines, which the kindergarten staff expected parents to carry out, but not everybody did, and the article investigates how the staff reacted towards the three deviant cases observed. The bottom-up analysis of the social interaction between the parents and the staff is here supplied by the perspective of racialization, questioning the gaze of majority persons and their naturalized power to define non-complying parents as something other. The kindergarten staff did not overtly orient to the non-compliance as a problem in the case where the parent had a majority background, which was in much contrast to their conduct in the two other cases with minority parents. In these cases, the staff interacted in a unilateral manner by giving advice and even instructions, very much embodying what Palludan in her study of children-staff interaction calls the teaching tone.
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