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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Understandings of emotional salience in a preschool classroom Wallberg, Pamela


The purpose of this research was to examine the ways in which preschoolers use artistic, kinaesthetic and linguistic modes of expression to recognize, label and understand feeling words of varied salience within a classroom environment. The ways in which a multi-modal approach towards emotional literacy in the classroom supported emotional literacy is examined. The research site was an urban preschool classroom in the lower mainland of British Columbia. Seventeen three-and-four-year-old children created drawings, kinaesthetically posed, and discussed feeling words of varied salience: ‘calm’, ‘happy’, and ‘ecstatic’, which served as the primary data source, supplemented with teacher observation notes. Analysis found that each mode offered unique insights into how young children recognize, understand and label feeling words of varied salience. Limitations of this study are discussed and suggestions for further research are offered.

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