It All Begins with Play: A Phenomenological Study on Child Led Pedagogy

Date of Award


Degree Name

Ed.D. in Educational Leadership


Department of Educational Administration


Meredith Wronowski


This study aims to determine the primary purpose of Early Childhood Education utilizing qualitative data collected from an array of experienced individuals from the target school's kindergarten at Kids Day School. The qualitative approach of phenomenology was utilized to make sense of individual experience of the early childhood context. Systematic sampling of individuals with experience in an early education setting occurred. Participants varied in age, educational experience, and cultural background. Semi-structured interviews and participant observations were conducted to examine how and why young learners learn, focusing on child led learning pedagogy within early childhood education. After axial coding was completed, three themes were identified: foundational learning, metacognition, and empowerment. The findings further the understanding and appreciation of early childhood education.


Early Childhood Education, Education Philosophy, Educational Theory, Early Childhood Education, Foundational Learning, Metacognition

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