The Quality of Teacher-child Interactions and Teachers’ Occupational well-being in Finnish Kindergartens: A Person-centered Approach

Viola Penttinen, Eija Pakarinen, Antje von Suchodoletz, Marja Kristiina Lerkkanen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Research Findings: The aim of the present study was to identify profiles of kindergarten teachers based on the observed quality of interactions with the children in their classrooms and to explore possible differences between the profiles in terms of teachers’ occupational well-being and teacher and classroom characteristics. Participants were 54 Finnish kindergarten teachers whose interactions with children were observed with the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS Pre-K). The teachers also completed a questionnaire about their occupational well-being. Four interaction profiles were identified: Highest Quality, Moderate Quality, Lower Quality with Limited Negativity, and Lower Quality with Moderate Negativity. Differences between the profiles were found in teachers’ teaching-related stress, general stress, and depressive symptoms. Furthermore, the profiles differed, albeit marginally significantly, in terms of teachers’ emotional exhaustion. Overall, teachers in the Moderate Quality profile reported the most favorable occupational well-being, whereas teachers in the Highest Quality and the two lower quality profiles reported challenges to their occupational well-being. The profiles did not differ in terms of teacher and classroom characteristics. Practice or Policy: Results suggest that teachers’ professional development opportunities should focus on both improving the quality of classroom interactions and enhancing teachers’ occupational well-being by reducing their stress.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalEarly Education and Development
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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