Master of Science (MS)


Human Ecology

Document Type



In a teacher-directed activity, such as whole group, children can learn new skills by following the teacher’s directions and/or model the teacher’s behaviors. The National Association for the Education of Young Children Developmentally Appropriate Practices provides several recommended practices for creating a community of learners. When teachers follow these strategies they are providing multiple opportunities to engage children (Bredekamp & Copple, 1997). When used appropriately, whole group instruction can be very effective when teaching and can be used at various times of the day. Whole group instruction builds a sense of community among the classroom. The purpose of this study is two fold: 1) to establish normative data to determine typical levels of correspondence with recommended practice and typical levels of child task engagement during whole group instruction 2) to modify the whole group activity to determine if child task engagement is impacted. This identifies the levels of task engagement of children during whole group instruction, while concurrently describing the whole group instruction in terms of recommended practice for preschool. The purpose is to determine if the identified criteria for recommended practice in whole group instruction will impact child task engagement during this activity. The settings for the targeted classrooms were three preschool classrooms. Each of the three classrooms was selected based on their performance as compared to the normative data in Phase One. These three classrooms had the highest amount of children exhibiting low levels of task engagement and low number of recommended practice for whole group instruction. Results indicated that when each of the teachers increased their adherence to the recommended practice in whole group instruction, children’s task engagement was observed to increase.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Cynthia DiCarlo



Included in

Human Ecology Commons