Staff Profiles


Dr Kate Smith

Senior Lecturer

School: Faculty of Education Undergraduate Programmes

Campus: Canterbury

Tel: 01227 923959

Profile summary

I have been a teacher and lecturer for 25 years in primary schools and academia. I am currently employed as a Senior Lecturer in Childhood Studies within the Faculty of Education. I have a PhD in Education and am also a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Prior to this I was a class teacher and art and literacy coordinator in primary schools and an FD Programme Director in Early Years for the University of Greenwich. My teaching and research expertise lies in young children’s language, literacy and creative practices, as well as in the methodologies and ethics of researching childhood. I am a member of the Faculty of Education Ethics Committee and a Director of Tenterden Schools Multi-academy Trust.

Research and knowledge exchange

  • Principle Investigator: The Playful Writing Project: developing expansive knowledge and practice of children’s mark-making, drawing and writing through play. Froebel Trust Research Grant (Jan – Dec 2017)
  • Principle Investigator: Simply Imagine: An exploration of creative pedagogies with early childhood practitioners through ‘make and say’ interviews (2017-18) 

Teaching and subject expertise

BA Early Childhood Studies, BA Education Studies, FD/BA Childhood Studies, FD Early Years

Module Lead:

Level 4 Language Development

Level 5 Language and Literacy

Level 6 Language and Play

Other modules taught:

Level 4 Reflective Practice; Personal and Professional Development

Level 5 Children’s Growth and Development; Creative and Cultural Development; Developing Inclusive Practice; Theories of Learning

Level 6 Contemporary Childhood Issues; Contemporary Learning Theory; Undergraduate Dissertation supervision

MA Early Childhood Education

Module lead: Historical and International Constructions of Childhood; International Curricular Approaches in the Early Years (Comparative curriculum); Leading Practice in Early Years (Action Research)

Other modules taught: Policy as Practice in ECE; MA Dissertation supervision

Link Tutor Early Years Initial Teacher Training (EYITT)

PhD supervision:

Lamia Aouaouche (from Oct 2018)  ‘The cognitive and socio-emotional development of toddlers receiving day care: a study of how nurseries’ caregivers bolster toddlers’ language abilities and self-control. The case of six Algerian nursery schools.’

Bochra Tari (from Oct 2018) ‘The Nature and Effectiveness of Pre-school Education Curriculum and Training: Towards Adopting a New Educational Policy Aiming at Attaining Quality Education in Algerian Nurseries.’

EdD thesis supervision:

Karen Vincent (from Oct 2018)

‘English University Based Early Childhood Initial Teacher Educators’ Narratives: Talking about teaching.’


  • European Early Childhood Research Association (EECERA)
  • United Kingdom Literacy Association (UKLA)
  • British Education Research Association (BERA)
  • Association for Professional Development in Early Years (TACTYC)

External activities

Simply Imagine: Exploring notions of creativity in ECEC, South East Early Childhood Education Community of Practice, Canterbury, June 2018

The ‘Playful Writing’ project: Exploring playful writing opportunities with reception teachers TACTYC Conference, Birmingham, November 2017

’Becoming with’ children as nomadic research participants Auto-biographical research theme group seminar, Canterbury Christ Church University, March 2017

Children’s drawing, marking and text making: relational encounters in classroom contexts, EECERA 25th Conference, Barcelona, 7-10 Sept 2015

Children as ‘becoming’ writers in their first year of school, UKLA 51st International Conference, National College of Teaching and Leadership, Nottingham, 10-12 July 2015

‘Play, Self-Activity, Representation and Development’, 6th Biennial Conference of the International Froebel Society 2014, CCCU, 26-28 June 2014

 Negotiating complex and dynamic research relationships with young children in a school classroom‘Values of Childhood and Childhood Studies’, VI Conference on Childhood Studies, Finnish Society for Childhood Studies, University of Oulu, Finland, 7–9 May 2014

Publications and research outputs

Smith, K. and Vincent, K. (forthcoming) Supporting Literacy through play. London: Sage

Smith, K. and Jackson, K. (2018) Learning to be a writer: why play really matters. Early Years Educator, Vol 12: 4 pp 28-30

Powell, S. & Smith, K. (Eds.) (2018) An Introduction to Early Childhood Studies (4th Ed.). London: Sage

Hammond, S., Powell, S., Smith, K. (2015) Towards a feminist praxis in mentoring in early childhood education and care in England, Early Years, Vol. 35:2

 Smith, K. (2014) Young children as ‘becoming’ writers within the context of a school classroom: hearing children through their writing activity, He Kupu (The Word), Vol. 3:5


Connect with us

Last edited: 29/01/2019 15:27:00