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Title: Experiences and Perceptions of Immigrant Parents: Understanding Explanations for Children’s Participation in Out-of-School Activities
Author: Zhu, Wenbei
Advisor: Lund, Darren
Keywords: Education--Early Childhood
Issue Date: 2-May-2014
Abstract: Guided by an ecological framework, this study has made an attempt to gain a thorough understanding of how Chinese immigrant parents think of and arrange their children’s out-of-school time (OST) activities in the context of their perceptive and experiential world before and after immigration. Based on the rich and thoughtful data I sought through interviews with my 12 respondents, this study revealed an interactive dynamic of operations at different levels. Namely, my findings have suggested from in-depth to surface at least three interrelated levels of operations: the process of multiple stages that these parents have gone through resulted in the movements and shifts in their mind and life; the exemplified influence on childrearing from in-depth level on OST associated understanding, choice of patterns, and multi-functions of OST activities; and subsequently, the required premises and conditions for OST participation on the surface level. An obvious gap was detected between parents’ understanding of competencies in the Canadian context and their actual choice of out-of-school time activities for children. Eventually, all the effort these immigrant parents made direct to the ultimate goal of creating an enjoyable, fulfilled, and “normal life” for their children and preparing them for their future in the adult world, which is essentially a part of their adaptation task in the Canadian context. I suggest that how parents make what decisions with regard to their children’s OST participation cannot be understood in an isolated way without looking at the sources of constant influences coming from broader and deeper ecological systems.
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