University of Oulu

Riikka Kess & Anna-Maija Puroila (2021) Narratives from the North: Early Childhood Teachers’ Narrative Identities in Place, Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, DOI: 10.1080/00313831.2021.1983867

Narratives from the North : early childhood teachers’ narrative identities in place

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Author: Kess, Riikka1; Puroila, Anna-Maija1
Organizations: 1Faculty of Education, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.5 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Informa, 2021
Publish Date: 2021-10-22


This study focuses on early childhood teachers’ narrative identities in the North, based on the concept of narrative identities in place. The aim of the study is to deepen understanding of early childhood teachers’ work in the culturally diverse North by approaching the teachers’ narrative identities as closely connected with place. The research question guiding this study is: How do early childhood teachers from the culturally diverse North narrate their identities? The research material consisted of 12 peer interviews (24 teachers). The findings show that early childhood teachers’ narrative identities in place are shaped in between three crucial dimensions: meaningful places, temporality, and (un)belonging to multiple communities. The study contributes to international research on teachers’ narrative identities, place-based education, and early childhood education both theoretically and methodologically. The findings of the study challenge teachers, teacher educators, and policymakers to recognise the significance of place for teachers’ identities.

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Series: Scandinavian journal of educational research
ISSN: 0031-3831
ISSN-E: 1470-1170
ISSN-L: 0031-3831
Volume: In press
DOI: 10.1080/00313831.2021.1983867
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 516 Educational sciences
Funding: This study was supported by the Finnish Cultural Foundation, North Ostrobothnia Regional Fund; NordForsk (Politics of belonging: Promoting children's inclusion in educational settings across borders) [Grant Number 85644].
Copyright information: © 2021 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.