Open Access
Nah, Jeonghye
Graduate Program:
Curriculum and Instruction
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
July 10, 2018
Committee Members:
  • Allison Sterling Henward, Thesis Advisor
  • Popular culture
  • Early Childhood Education
  • Curriculum
This aim of the study is to examine a view colored by beliefs, practices, and experiences with popular culture of early childhood teachers in South Korea. I attempt to discover their beliefs and experiences with popular culture and how they negotiate its role in the early childhood settings depends on their educational backgrounds. As a theoretical framework, I draw on Bourdieu’s cultural capital and taste as a distinction proving that teachers’ different view on popular culture depends on their educational level. I conduct a semi-structured interview individually with 9 early childhood teachers (4 of 2-3-year college teachers and 5 of 4-year university teachers) via Google Hangout, Skype or any other video phone program depends on what teachers want to use. Upon close analysis of the data, I find out that 2-3-year college teachers and 4-year university teachers’ view is pretty the same way in popular culture among class room but subtle differences are occurred. The two groups of teacher’s view on popular culture is widely unlike regarding children’s accessibility to adult content, and they also have different reasons to search children's popular culture. Finally, when it comes to the approach on popular culture as a curriculum, the 2-3-year college teachers are not interested in while the 4-year university teachers show the willingness to embrace popular culture as a curriculum only in educational ways. This study implies because that each teacher group has a different view on popular culture depending on their social class, cultural capital, and educational level in which they go through, different strategies should be needed when popular culture are introduced as a pedagogical method.