Teachers in inclusive early education classrooms face competing pressures that are highlighted as children transition from play-based settings into formal school. Their challenge is to engage in pedagogical practice that caters for the complex range of school entrants. Yet the existing literature reports on transition challenges for separate groups of children rather than on shared needs or processes within diverse class populations. This study addressed this gap by investigating practices that supported transition in three Australian sites in which the populations represented different types of pedagogic challenge. Four themes regarding inclusion and transition were identified from a synthesis of the literature and applied to three cases. Results indicated that teachers adopted a range of approaches framed by the visibility of diversity, by classroom and school context and by the teachers' professional transition in enacting changing policies. The results suggest that competing demands are balanced through dynamic, contextually framed strategies of relevance to both ECEC and schools. (author abstract)
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Assessment of Practices in Early Elementary Classrooms