Measuring the Practices, Philosophies, and Characteristics of Kindergarten Teachers

by Laura S. Hamilton, Cassandra M. Guarino

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This paper uses data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class 1998-99 (ECLS-K), sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, to explore some of the characteristics, practices, and philosophies of kindergarten teachers and schools. The purpose of these analyses was to create measures of constructs related to teaching and to explore the possible utility of these measures for future research. Exploratory factor analysis was used to examine several categories of variables that would be expected to influence student learning and to inform the development of scales that could be used in subsequent analyses linking teacher and school factors to student achievement growth during the kindergarten year. The categories of variables examined in this study include teachers' instructional practices, teaching philosophies, school climate, and resources.

Table of Contents

  • Chapter One

    Introduction

  • Chapter Two

    Background on Teaching Constructs

  • Chapter Three

    Data

  • Chapter Four

    Construction of Scales

  • Chapter Five

    Summary And Application To Future Research

This work was funded by the National Center for Education Statistics and conducted by RAND Education.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation working paper series. RAND working papers are intended to share researchers' latest findings and to solicit informal peer review. They have been approved for circulation by RAND but may not have been formally edited or peer reviewed.

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