The purpose of this paper is to clarify Eiichi Mochida's view on early childhood education system, focusing on its relation to “sharing” of practices in Lumbini Gakuen Nursery School and Kindergarten. In 1952, Gakuen was founded in Edogawa Ward, Tokyo Metropolis by Toyonobu Fukui, Mochida's old friend and a Buddhist priest. Until 1972, Mochida, a professor of education at the University of Tokyo, had constructed his own view on early childhood education system, which assumed a “sharing” of practices in Gakuen.
Firstly, with the expansion of Gakuen resulting from urbanization, teachers instigated staff meetings, which planned and reflected their own practice upon receiving accreditation for the nursery school. However, large-scale retirement and the hiring of new teachers in fiscal 1969 saw Mochida begin to guide Gakuen through study and training seminars. As a result, in 1972 teachers and Mochida published “Kindergarten” which detailed their own practices.
Secondly, Mochida visited Gakuen for the first time in 1964, and since fiscal 1969 started to attend study and training seminars with Sachiko Ito, his graduate student. He began to research early childhood education in 1964, which he resumed after student activism at the University of Tokyo in the late 1960s, ultimately deciding on researching the theory of the relationship between educational practice and condition, administration, and management.
Thirdly, ” Kindergarten” was a record showing the relationship between practice and management of Gakuen and national policy, and was for Mochida the testing ground for his theory, which set the starting point for unification of nurseries and kindergartens in which teachers had “shared” their practices, shouldering administration and management of their own institution. Finally, through the “sharing” of practices at Gakuen, he thought it essential that teachers opened their own practices and management to the revolution of the existing early childhood education system.