Becoming a person in the preschool: creating integrated gender, school culture, and peer culture positionings

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This article explores social processes related to the social competence of children evident in preschools and to researchers’ collaborative efforts to understand it. Drawing examples from the authors’ respective programs of research in the United States and Australia, we demonstrate how preschool children struggle to construct their full social membership in classroom discourse to achieve the often simultaneous accomplishment of oneself as a student, peer, and gendered person. With regard to research processes, we demonstrate how researchers with different but compatible theoretical#shresearch perspectives may widen their interpretive lenses through collaborative dialogue, the yield being a more multifaceted vision of young children's social competence.