Kindergarten is a significant element of children’s education in China. The main purpose of this activity is to receive proper child care, which includes preparation for the future and allows young individuals to develop critical thinking (Studies et al., 2016). These capabilities are highly essential for becoming independent later in life, and preschool education offers the perfect opportunity for young learners to master such abilities. Another significant benefit of preschool education in China is the growing standard of the educational system. The Chinese government is highly focused on gradually improving the quality of kindergarten learning, introducing novel policies that allow children to use numerous technological advancements while studying (Studies et al., 2016). After entering the preschool education system, young learners typically have a higher chance to master basic cognitive skills and adopt society’s moral values (Studies et al., 2016). In the long term, these benefits account for a better adjustment into the community.
In comparison, preschool education in Japan is mostly focused on integrating young individuals into society. In Japanese kindergartens, students typically learn basic behaviors that will govern their future lives, such as particular habits and attitudes that allow them to fit into the surrounding environment (Peak, 1989). During this process, children also learn to control their emotional outputs, which is integral for becoming functional members of society.
In China, there are several behaviors that children are not supposed to exhibit when attending kindergarten. For example, not listening to the teacher is considered a bad attitude, as a child directly disrespects a person who is older and more experienced than them (Li et al., 2016). In addition, children are expected to follow the provided instructions, and not complying is also regarded as bad behavior (Li et al., 2016). However, if a student fails to perform a specific activity because of bad performance or lack of experience, they might also be reprimanded for misbehaving. For example, during an art activity, some students might be going at a slower pace than others. Nevertheless, as the responsibility for performance is attributed to the child’s desire to excel, they will be required to work more diligently to achieve the same results as their peers (Li et al., 2016). Finally, threatening or abusing classmates is also considered a negative attitude, and children are expected to behave politely towards everyone.
Contrastingly, Japanese preschool students are rarely punished for misbehaving. A common strategy to manage bad behavior is ignoring the child until they begin manifesting appropriate behavior (Peak, 1989). For instance, being hyperactive or not participating in group activities, typical examples of bad behavior in Japan, will lead to the teacher completely disregarding the child’s activities (Peak, 1989). Instead, teachers only intervene to establish harmony between the students, compelling them to apologize or forgive each other.
To conclude, preschool education in China serves several purposes, from child care to educational and social preparation, ensuring positive development for the attending children. Opting to enroll children in kindergarten appears to be highly beneficial for parents, who can ensure that their kids receive a high-quality education from trained professionals. In an atmosphere of constant competition present in China, preschool education becomes essential. Meanwhile, the Japanese preschool system is more directed towards socialization than academic or social excellence. After that, perceptions of bad behavior in kindergarten children are drastically different in China and Japan. Japanese teachers are more relaxed towards inappropriate behavior, even hitting or threatening others, which would be considered a severe issue in a Chinese kindergarten.
Li, Y., Coplan, R. J., Archbell, K. A., Bullock, A., & Chen, L. (2016). Chinese kindergarten teachers’ beliefs about young children’s classroom social behavior. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 36, 122–132. Web.
Peak, L. (1989). Learning to become part of the group: The Japanese child’s transition to preschool life. Journal of Japanese Studies, 15(1), 93–123. Web.
Studies, Z. C. E., University, G., Gent, Studies, B. V. E., University, G., Gent, Studies, B. V. E., University, G., Gent, & Belgium. (2016). Empirical study of parents’ perceptions of preschool teaching competencies in China. Open Journal of Social Sciences, 4(2). Web.