Constructing child participation in early years classrooms: an exploration from Wales

Waters-Davies, Jane and Murphy, Alison and Chicken, Sarah and Tyrie, Jacky and Clement, Jennifer (2024) Constructing child participation in early years classrooms: an exploration from Wales. Children & Society. ISSN 0951-0605

Waters-Davies, Jane (2024) Constructing child participation in early years classrooms published version.pdf - Published Version
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This paper addresses the research problem that arises from evidence that, despite supportive policy contexts, enactment of pedagogies that attend to young children’s participation rights in classroom settings is highly variable. We report our exploration of the ways in which the child, and child participation are constructed in early education settings in Wales, where legislation and policy around children’s rights has been a key feature of the Welsh Government agenda post devolution. Data was gathered via a qualitative online bilingual (English and Welsh) survey offered via email to teachers of children aged 3-7 in Wales. The overarching research question of the project was: How do teachers of children 3-7 years understand and enact the notion of participation as it relates to the children they teach? Data analysis focused on research participants’ apparent constructions of the children they teach and their capabilities, and unpacked the ways in which these constructions relate to the reported opportunities for participation. The discussion is informed by the notion of the threshold concept (Meyer and Land 2003), where a threshold concept can be seen as akin to a portal that opens new and previously inaccessible ways of thinking. We consider the extent to which the conceptual construction of the capable child maybe a threshold concept in shaping the realisation of children’s participation rights in educative contexts.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Construction of childhood, child participation, early years, Wales, early education
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1501 Primary Education
Divisions: Institutes and Academies > Institute of Education and Humanities > Academic Discipline: Childhood, Youth and Education
Depositing User: Natalie Williams
Date Deposited: 12 Feb 2024 15:26
Last Modified: 28 Feb 2024 10:40

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