Developmentalism, developmentally appropriate practice (DAP) and beyond in early childhood education

Iris Duhn, Louise Hennessy

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEncyclopaedia / Dictionary EntryOtherpeer-review


    One of the aims of education is to teach humans to govern themselves and learn to be governed according to what counts as truths in societies at the time. This is the assertion of the eminent twentieth-century French philosopher Michel Foucault. Historically, one of the tasks of modern education was to provide teaching strategies to support and shape the developing human according to universal, scientifically underscored, developmental patterns. In many societies, developmentalism continues to provide a powerful rationale for pedagogies and curriculum. This discussion provides a critique of the traditional perspective on developmentalism, normativity, and developmentally appropriate practice (DAP), offering an alternative view on individual diversity and responsive context-specific engagement.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Teacher Education
    EditorsMichael A. Peters
    Place of PublicationSingapore Singapore
    Number of pages6
    ISBN (Electronic)9789811311796
    Publication statusPublished - 2019

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