Document Type: Conference Papers
Conference: Hong Kong Educational Research Association (HKERA) International Conference 2018: Equity, Access, and Diversity in Education: Theory, Practice, and Research (2018: The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong)
Home-school collaboration can bring numerous benefits to children, teachers and families. One of the major responsibilities of early childhood teachers nowadays, therefore, is to collaborate with families and involve them in their children’s education. However, not all pre-service teachers demonstrate high levels of willingness and readiness to do so. The present study aims to identify the character strengths and parent-related perceptions associated with pre-service early childhood teachers’ positive attitudes towards collaboration with families and confidence in implementing home-school collaboration activities. A total of 250 pre-service early childhood teachers were recruited from a university in Hong Kong and surveyed. Results of hierarchical regression analysis showed that after controlling for the year of study in the teacher education programme (as a proxy of professional knowledge), pre-service teachers’ character strength of judgment, perception of parents’ responsibilities in children’s education and perception of parents’ trust towards kindergarten teachers were significant correlates of their attitudes towards collaboration with families. Meanwhile, pre-service teachers’ character strength of judgment, character strength of social intelligence, perception of parents’ parenting competence, perception of parents’ trust towards kindergarten teachers were significant correlates of their confidence in implementing home-school collaboration activities. These findings suggest that in order to better prepare pre-service teachers to collaborate with families, it is important for teacher educators to help them develop positive perceptions about parents, an attitude of openness to diverse perspectives, and the skills of responding to others’ feelings in caring ways in different social situations. Copyright © 2018 HKERA International Conference.