Supporting Danish early educators’ professionalism and children’s language development- BookFun as a pathway to improved inclusion
The objective of the thesis is to explore how BookFun can support children’s language development as well as early educators’ professional development in order to create pathways to improved inclusion in the day-care centres. The empirical foundation of the thesis uses a mixed methods design. A matched controlled trial with 77 3-4 year old children showed that BookFun is a powerful tool for boosting children’s vocabulary and verbal working memory (measured by semantic fluency) in a more effective way than regular book reading. Results from an interview study with 36 early educators showed that they could successfully integrate BookFun with their existing practices and that the programme has the potential to support professionalism as well as inclusion in the day-care centres. The results are discussed in relation to the central research questions and the contributions, implications and limitations of the study are considered. In conclusion, the thesis finds support for BookFun’s potential to support development in the day-care centres among both early educators and children, thus creating pathways to improved inclusion.