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Shared life-world: a discussion about the learning pre-school child and active citizenship
Luleå University of Technology, Department of Arts, Communication and Education, Education, Language, and Teaching.
2010 (English)In: Abstracts: Active citizenship, NERA's 38th Congress, Malmö, 11-13 March 2010, 2010, 34-35 p.Conference paper, Meeting abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

It appeared to me as a frightening fact that the children at our pre-school maybe did not see their possibility to influence even though we had tried to open for participation. I understood that in our eagerness we had taken children's perspective for granted. Instead the children had made their own strategy in order to do the best out of the situation... (pre-school teacher). This quotation from a pre-school teacher can be seen as an example of the difficulties when working with participation in pre-school. Research shows that genuine participation is hard to achieve in pre-schools. Although the awareness among pre-school teachers concerning those questions has grown, it is often of small interest from the society to create places where the children have had an opportunity to have a say in matters concerning them or their community. Participation among the children then relies on the pre-school teachers working with them. How can preschool teachers, within pre-school as an organisation, meet children with reciprocity, really listen to them and organize education in pre-school from their perspective? Society and adults often talk in very generalizing words about what a child is, what children like to do or how children learn. This view stems from the development psychology, which has had a great influence in the field of childhood and early childhood education. Images or constructions of the child have changed from a poor and weak child to a competent child. Those images and lasting generalisations tend to sustain limiting obligations which makes truly listening, meeting and participation very difficult. Inter-subjectivity is described as central in human meetings and can be described as our common interaction, negotiation and description of ideas and phenomenon in our every day life. The aim of this paper is to analyse and discuss the life-world as a theoretical concept related to the context of the pre-school, with a special focus on inter-subjectivity and how to understand "the learning preschool-child". I want to highlight the possibility to move from representations and generalisations about the learning pre-school child towards the unique child. I will also argue that the life-world entail the possibility to move from a perspective of "either/or" to a perspective of "both/and", where the relations between for example body and soul, subject and object, individual and social, process and result are intertwined. The theory of the life-world in general, and inter-subjectivity in special, becomes a condition for understanding the other's subjective I - the unique meeting with the unique person in the unique situation. It is therefore important for the pre-school to really take the children's participation into account. To meet the child as a unique person, and to really listen to the same, is a prerequisite to promote an active citizenship for the learning pre-schoolchild and therefore a relevant aspect when creating educational knowledge and new spaces for educational research in the Nordic countries.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. 34-35 p.
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-26962Local ID: 03defe40-52dd-11df-a0f4-000ea68e967bOAI: diva2:1000143
NERA Congress 2010 : 11/03/2010 - 13/03/2010
Godkänd; 2010; 20100428 (ysko)Available from: 2016-09-30 Created: 2016-09-30Bibliographically approved

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