Research

Partnerships for Early Childhood Curriculum Development: Readiness through Integrative Science and Engineering (RISE)

With Drs. Jayanthi Mistry (Tufts University), Daryl Greenfield (University of Miami), Betty Zan (University of Northern Iowa), and Kimberly Brenneman (formerly at Rutgers University, NIEER)

The primary goal of the RISE project is to improve school readiness for dual language learners (DLLs) by strengthening connections between home and school and by fostering positive approaches to learning through hands-on science, technology, and engineering (STE) curriculum. A major focus of RISE is on helping Head Start teachers to access families' funds of knowledge, because theory and research suggest that building on children's familiar knowledge and fostering home-school connections improves student outcomes.

Over the last five years, the project team has co-constructed an integrative STE curriculum with Head Start teachers and families. The development and initial pilot implementation phase of this project was funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Brady Education Foundation, and private support from Ellen R. Cohen. We are currently launching a large-scale randomized controlled trial in over 60 Head Start classrooms. This second phase is supported by generous funding from NSF, the Heising-Simons Foundation, and private support from Ellen R. Cohen. There are many opportunities within this project for Tufts student involvement!

For more information on this line of research, please read:

*Indicates student co-author

McWayne, C. M. (2015). Family-school partnerships in a context of urgent engagement: Rethinking models, measurement, and meaningfulness. In S. Sheridan (Ed.), Research on Family-School Partnerships: An Interdisciplinary Examination of State of the Science and Critical Needs (pp. 105-124). Switzerland: Springer International Publishing.

McWayne, C. M., & *Hyun, S. (2016). Family engagement in early childhood education curriculum. In D. Couchenour & K. Chrisman (Eds.), The SAGE Encyclopedia of Contemporary Early Childhood Education. Sage Publications: Oak Hills, CA.

McWayne, C. M., Mistry, J., Brenneman, K., Zan, B., & Greenfield, D. (Invited monograph, under advanced review). Supporting Family Engagement in STE Curriculum among Low-income Immigrant Families with Preschool Children. To appear in the 2018 Family-School-Community Partnerships monograph series (Eds. J. Kennedy, M. Caspe, & T. Woods). Washington, DC: American Educational Research Association.

Selected Presentations:

McWayne, C., Mistry. J., Brenneman, K., Zan, B., & Greenfield, D. (2016, July). Innovations in early childhood curriculum and professional development: Taking a funds of knowledge approach. Poster presentation at the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) National Research Conference on Early Childhood. Washington, DC.

*Li, L., *Hyun, S., McWayne, C., Mistry, J., Greenfield, D., Brenemann, K., & Zan, B. (2016, April). Patterns of Parent-Teacher Interactions in Home-School Collaboration: Negotiating a Partnership through Non-Hierarchical Dialogues. A roundtable presentation at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association. Washington, DC.

McWayne, C., Mistry, J., Brenemann, K., Zan. B., & Greenfield, D. (2016, April). Partnerships among Researchers, Teachers, and Families: Co-Constructing Science and Engineering Curriculum for Head Start Dual Language Learners. A roundtable presentation at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association. Washington, DC.

Zan, B., Croteau, S., Chait, H., & Wang, T., McWayne, C., Mistry, J., Brenneman, K., & Greenfield, D. (2015, November). Science, technology, and engineering experiences with living and non-living objects: Exploring the concept of change over time though the eyes of preschool dual language learners. Presentation at the annual conference of the National Association for the Education of Young Children. Orlando, FL.

McWayne, C., *Hyun, S., Brenneman, K., Mistry, J., Greenfield, D., & Zan, B. (2015, October). Engaging Families and Teachers in Curriculum Co-Construction for DLLs. A paper presentation at the National Head Start Association Parent and Family Engagement Conference, San Diego, CA.

McWayne, C., Mistry, J., Greenfield, D., Brenneman, K., & Zan, B. (2015, March). Partnerships for early childhood curriculum development: Readiness through integrative science and engineering. Presented as part of the Poster symposium "Innovations in Early Childhood STEM Curriculum and Professional Development" (Chair: K. Brenneman) at the 2015 Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research on Child Development. Philadelphia, PA.
 
Zan, B., Greenfield, D., Brenneman, K., McWayne, C., & Mistry, J. (2015, March). Integrating science, technology, and engineering in Pre-K: STE-P up your practice! Presentation at National Science Teachers Association Annual Conference, Chicago, IL.

*Hyun, S., McWayne, C., & Mistry, J. (2015, February). Evidence of reciprocal dialogue in curriculum co-construction: Recent findings and site variations in two Head Start programs serving DLLs. Paper presented at the 36th Annual Ethnography in Education Research Forum, Philadelphia, PA.

*Li, L. W., McWayne, C., & Mistry, J. (2015, February). Parents' and teachers' perspectives about preschool children's learning opportunities in two immigrant communities. Paper presented at the 36th Ethnography in Education Research Forum, University of Pennsylvania. Philadelphia, PA.

Zan, B., Brenneman, K., Greenfield, D., McWayne, C., & Mistry, J. (2014, November). Integrating science, technology, and engineering in Pre-K: STEPP up your practice! Presented at the National Association for the Education of Young Children, Dallas, TX.

*Limlingan, M.C., *Dong, S., *Miller, A., McWayne, C., Mistry, J., Zan, B., Brenneman, K. & Greenfield, K. (2014, April). Variations in Language Use by Preschool Dual Language Learners in Two Immigrant Communities. Roundtable session presented at the American Educational Research Association 2014 Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

*Hyun, S., Li, L., *Crowley, A., McWayne, C., Mistry. J., Zan, B., Brenneman. K., & Greenfield, D. (2014, April). Reflection of Child's Neighborhood in Preschool Classrooms: Implications for Studying the Context of Immigrant Communities. Roundtable session presented at the American Educational Research Association 2014 Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Learn more about the RISE Project >