# help from teachers, and therefore gaining

# brief introduction to research question and method ###Literature reviewStudies have found that children from families of different social-economic backgrounds have shown different patterns of learning behaviour, influencing their learning outcomes as a result and that children’s education development has strong and complicated links with their social-economic backgrounds (Calais and Cornigans, 2015). According to Coleman (1988), families that possess greater social capital will influence and better prepare their children to interact more effectively and confidently in the eduction system.Coleman’s finding is supported by a longitudinal, ethnographic study of one socioeconomically diverse, public elementary school conducted by Calarco in 2011. The researcher found that compared to children of working-class family background, middle-class children request more help from teachers and do so by employing different strategies. Rather than passively waiting for help, they are more willing to take the initiative to call out for assisstance or approach teachers directly, even interrupting the class to make requests (Calarco, 2011). This allowed middle-class students to receive more help from teachers, and therefore gaining more opportunities to learn. Social class is not the only factor that influences children’s opportunities to learn both in school and outside of school. Race and ethnicity have also played a role in children’s educational development at elementary level. Caldas and Cornigans (2015) categorised a family’s educational capital into three groups: parent-child interactions, parent-parent interaction, and parent-school interactions, By assessing a family’s social capital from these three dimensions, they found that families of colour, including Black, Hispanic, and mixed-race family status is directly associated with diminished social capital. Furthermore, they found that even middle- and upper-class minority families have access to less social capital than White families. The distribution of educational resources is also closely linked with a family’s class and racial backgrounds (Blenden and Macmillan, 2016).Drawing on Bourdieu’s concept of social capital (1985), I would like to suggest that a family’s social capital in relation to the social world of schools will affect their children’s opportunity to gain resources from the education system. As Bourdieu proposed that social relationship allows individuals to access resources possessed by the groups with which they have a mutual acquaintance. I would like to argue that children socialised in different family backgrounds possess different sums of socioeconomic capital and hence influence their opportunities to learn. ###Research methodTo explore this research question, and assess children’s opportunity to learn both in school and out of school, I plan to conduct an ethnographic study of at an elementary school of children from mixed class and ethnic backgrounds. To understand children’s day-to-day learning dynamics and interactions with teachers in school, I plan to use participant observation in classes to avoid disturbance and interruption. To investigate children’s learning experience off-school, semi-structured interviews will be conducted with parents. Semi-structured Interviews will be conducted with class teachers to have a better understanding of children’s learning performances.