Date of Award

Spring 2022

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


College of Education, Department of Teacher Education

First Advisor

Sung Park-Johnson, PhD

Second Advisor

Amy Clark, PhD


An increasing number of children in early childhood education (ECE) are Latinx. Drawing on ethnic identity, culture, and language, this thesis describes the dichotomy between adherences to one’s ethnic identity and assimilation into the dominant societal culture. This paper describes how assimilation harms students and provokes negative implications such as identity loss, confusion, and loss of cultural ties. Dismantling the dichotomy is possible through the power of language, culture, and strengthening teacher-parent relationships.