Supporting pre-school educators to respond to challenging behaviours in Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) - a systematic review.

Year: 2019

Author: Panthi, Narayan

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Supporting pre-school educators to respond to challenging behaviours in

Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) - a systematic review.

Presented by: Narayan Panthi (Ph. D. UQ, Educator- Goodstart)

Background and Aim

Early childhood is characterised by a period of rapid development and learning. Findings from neurological research suggests that very rapid neural connections takes place in first few years making it significant by setting foundation for lifetime learning. In today’s modern society, the majority of children attend ECEC services where they spend a large amount of their active time.

Classroom routines are often established with certain expectations to address the need and diversity of the children in class. For various reasons, some children experience difficulties following routines. As a result, those children are most likely to disengage in learning and exhibit unexpected behaviours. These kind of behaviours impact negatively on the child, other children in class and the educators. In this learning situation, educators seek support to execute the program successfully and to meet the planned learning outcomes for all children.

The purpose of this research is to collect and inform the evidence of support systems and programs available for ECEC educators to respond to various challenging behaviours in the range of social context.


A systematic review was undertaken by two researchers (NP and CO) to identify ‘the current evidence for programs and strategies that support educators in responding to challenging behaviour’ after registered to PROSPERO.

Data source were:

* ERIC (via EBSCOhost),
* PsycINFO (via EBSCOhost),
* CINAHL (via EBSCOhost)
* Web of Science and
* Relevant reference list from the finding research papers

Search terms were:

(Teacher* OR Educator*) AND (Behav* OR Internal* OR External*) AND (problem* OR difficult* OR challeng* OR disrupt*) AND (Intervention* OR Program*) AND (""Early Education"" OR ""Early Years"" OR “Child care” OR “Preschool” OR ""Early Childhood"" OR “Pre-School” OR “Kindergarten” OR “pre-K”).

The analysis is ongoing and examining the:

1. underlying philosophy and pedagogical conceptualisation of children’s behaviour
2. types of intervention an educator can use to support behavioural problem
3. the professional agencies of educators


Data extraction and analysis is currently in progress. The result will outline program and their effectiveness in context.

Conclusion and implementation

The result is aimed to provide a tool to educators to assist their agencies in selecting approach to match behavioural challenges in context of an individual child in social setting.