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Production and Products of Preschool Documentation: Entanglements of children, things, and templates
Linköping University, Department of Social and Welfare Studies, Learning, Aesthetics, Natural science. Linköping University, Faculty of Educational Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2230-4772
2017 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)Alternative title
Produktion och produkter av dokumentation i förskolan : Sammanflätningar av barn, ting och mallar (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

The objective of the present study is to produce knowledge about how children, things, documents, computers, teachers, templates and other entities take part in and produce documentation in preschool systematic quality development work. The thesis asks questions about how and what is produced as quality in preschool documentation. Through a posthumanist agential realist approach, the study engages empirically in video recordings of preschool documentation practices from one Swedish preschool, and in documentation from four other Swedish preschools.

The results, presented in four articles, show that documentation practice is complex and entangled with a variety of entities, human and non-human, and spaces and time. The study shows how children’s participation in production of documentation does not depend on which documentation method is used. In the study, objects such as computers, images and coloured labels, together with teachers’ attitudes and agendas, have an impact on the way that children are involved in producing documentation. The results also show that the products of documentation, intra-acting with a local template, with past and present preschool traditions and policies, produce rather than represent certain elements of quality such as teachers’ actions, children’s interests and thematic work. The thesis produces knowledge about how the focus of preschool documentation shifts away from individual children and towards teachers’ activities, and creates possibilities for what preschool practices and quality may become.

Abstract [sv]

Syftet med föreliggande studie är att producera kunskap om hur barn, ting, dokument, datorer, lärare, mallar och andra entiteter deltar i och producerar dokumentation i förskolans systematiska kvalitetsarbete. I avhandlingen ställs frågor om hur och vad som produceras som kvalitet i dokumentation i förskolan. Utifrån det posthumanistiska perspektivet agentisk realism, skapas empiriskt material med hjälp av videoinspelningar från en svensk förskolas dokumentationspraktik och dokumentation från fyra andra svenska förskolor.

Resultaten presenteras i fyra artiklar och visar att dokumentationspraktiken är komplex och sammanflätad med en mängd olika entiteter, mänskliga och icke-mänskliga, samt med plats och tid. Studien visar hur barns delaktighet i att producera dokumentation inte enbart styrs av den dokumentationsmetod som används. I studien har ting som datorer, bilder och färgade etiketter, tillsammans med lärarnas attityder och agendor, inverkan på det sätt som barn är delaktiga i att producera dokumentation. Resultaten visar också att dokumentationen, i intra-aktion med en lokal mall, med tidigare och rådande traditioner och styrdokument för förskolan, producerar snarare än representerar specifika aspekter av kvalitet, såsom förskollärares aktivitet, barns intressen och tematiskt arbete. Avhandlingen ger kunskap om hur fokus för dokumentation i förskolan förskjuts från enskilda barn mot förskollärares aktivitet, samtidigt som dokumentationen skapar nya möjligheter för vad förskolans verksamhet och kvalitet kan bli.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2017. , p. 120
Series
Linköping Studies in Pedagogic Practices, ISSN 1653-0101 ; 31Linköping studies in education and social sciences ; 12
Keywords [en]
Early childhood education, preschool practice, preschool documentation, systematic quality development work, agential realism, posthumanism
Keywords [sv]
Förskola, förskolepraktik, dokumentation i förskolan, systematiskt kvalitetsarbete, agentisk realism, posthumanism
National Category
Pedagogical Work Pedagogy Didactics Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-136694DOI: 10.3384/diss.diva-136694ISBN: 9789176855539 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-136694DiVA, id: diva2:1089810
Public defence
2017-05-12, K1, Kåkenhus, Campus Norrköping, Norrköping, 13:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2017-04-21 Created: 2017-04-21 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Children's participation in preschool documentation practices
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Children's participation in preschool documentation practices
2015 (English)In: Childhood, ISSN 0907-5682, E-ISSN 1461-7013, Vol. 22, no 2, p. 231-247Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The Swedish preschool curriculum not only prescribes documentation and quality assessment, it also requires children’s participation in the documentation process, although it offers no directions on how the documenting should be done, which can leave teachers unsure of how to do it. This study differs from research that presents pedagogical documentation as a way of enabling children’s participation in preschool in that it explores children’s participation in producing different forms of documentation in a Swedish preschool – and it finds that such participation is complex. The findings imply that, whether documentation is activity-integrated or retrospective, different forms of participation are possible.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2015
Keywords
Childhood, children’s participation, children’s rights, pedagogical documentation, preschool practice
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-105830 (URN)10.1177/0907568213513480 (DOI)000353984500007 ()2-s2.0-84930347007 (Scopus ID)
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 729-2010-200
Available from: 2014-04-09 Created: 2014-04-09 Last updated: 2017-12-05Bibliographically approved
2. Sticky Dots and Lion Adventures Playing a Part in Preschool Documentation Practices
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Sticky Dots and Lion Adventures Playing a Part in Preschool Documentation Practices
2015 (English)In: International Journal of Early Childhood, ISSN 0020-7187, E-ISSN 1878-4658, Vol. 47, no 3, p. 443-460Article in journal (Other academic) Published
Abstract [en]

This article is based on a study of Swedish preschool documentation practices. The 2010 revised version of the Swedish preschool curriculum emphasizes documentation as an important practice. The Swedish preschool curriculum also emphasizes children’s participation in documentation and evaluation. The main reason for this can be found in the very first words of the curriculum: ‘Democracy forms the foundation of the preschool’ (Swedish National Agency of Education, 2011, p. 3). This is connected to children’s right to make their voices heard in all matters affecting them according to UNCRC. However, the curriculum does not give any guidelines on how to carry out this practice. A quality audit by the Swedish Schools Inspectorate in 2011 found that preschool teachers were uncertain about how to document (Skolinspektionen, 2011). This, and a lack of knowledge about documentation, sometimes impedes teachers’ documentation practices in the preschools (Palmer, 2012). With the term documentation practices I refer to all events connected to making and using documentations in the preschool; these include, for example, taking photographs, writing captions, printing documents, looking at and talking about photos, and discussing events depicted in photos or drawings. In documentation practices different kinds of artefacts or devices are present and used (e.g., cameras, computers, printers, pencils, and paper) or produced (e.g, printed photos, texts, and drawings). Through methods that are shaped by an agential realist construct, the main objective of this article is to explore how different kinds of material agents, such as computers, photos, teachers and children, can intra-act (Barad, 2007) in the production of children’s participation in preschool documentation practices. The reason for using the term intra-act rather than interact is that, in Barad’s terms, the world is not seen as consisting of separate entities, which the word interaction implies. Instead entities (which could be human or non-human) are temporarily separated or produced through intra-action; ‘relations do not follow relata, but the other way around’ (Barad, 2007, pp. 136-137). This means that entities are not themselves agential, but become agential through intra-action, and that there is no way of determining, in advance, that any of them are active agents. Agency is also not situated within entities, but is rather produced through intra-action, suggesting that also material objects can become active.

What is documented in Swedish preschools can vary considerably, from activities and/or achievements of individual children to activities that encompass the whole preschool. Documentation can be done for different reasons, such as showing parents what their children have been doing,  assessing individual children or evaluating preschool quality as a whole, and it can also be used as a tool for developing the preschool practice (Vallberg-Roth, 2012). There are thus different aims, from documenting in order to be able to remember and evaluate or assess to documenting in order to make way for and develop new activities (Swedish National Agency of Education, 2011).

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Netherlands, 2015
Keywords
Early childhood education, Children’s participation, Pedagogical documentation, Preschool practice, Childhood
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-112873 (URN)10.1007/s13158-015-0146-9 (DOI)
Note

On the day of the defence date the status of this article was Manuscript.

Available from: 2014-12-18 Created: 2014-12-18 Last updated: 2017-12-05Bibliographically approved
3. Teachers’ actions and children’s interests: Quality becomings in preschool documentation
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Teachers’ actions and children’s interests: Quality becomings in preschool documentation
2017 (English)In: Nordisk Barnehageforskning, ISSN 1890-9167, E-ISSN 1890-9167, Vol. 14, no 2, p. 1-17Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

High quality is considered to be important for children’s development and learning in early childhood education. Swedish preschool teachers are required to systematically develop their practice and support children’s learning, using documentation and taking children’s interests into account. From a posthumanist perspective, preschool documentation, models and templates could be seen as actively producing certain elements of quality.  Reading  documentation from eight Swedish preschool groups diffractively through different texts, such as the national curriculum, supportive texts and research, this article discusses how teachers’ actions and children’s interests are produced as important quality aspects in one of these groups.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Høgskolen i Oslo og Akershus, 2017
Keywords
Documentation, Early childhood education, Posthumanism, Preschool quality
National Category
Pedagogical Work Pedagogy Didactics Learning Specific Languages
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-136693 (URN)10.7577/nbf.1756 (DOI)
Available from: 2017-04-21 Created: 2017-04-21 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved

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