Systematic Child Talks in Early Childhood Education—A Method for Sustainability
- What links can be found between the preschool teachers’ verbal approaches in the talks and different views on children and knowledge?
- How are the different approaches to knowledge related to education for sustainability?
2. Materials and Methods
2.1. Understanding Early Childhood Education Politically—A Broad Perspective of Variation
2.2. Young Children as Social, Active, and with Competences
2.3. Dialogues with Children: The Importance of a Competent Teacher
2.4. Early Childhood Education in Sweden: Communication and Sustainability in Focus
“An ability to use and understand concepts, see correlations, and discover new ways of understanding the world around them;
An ability to create and an ability to express and communicate occurrences, thoughts, and experiences in different forms of expression such as image, form, drama, movement, singing, music, and dance”.(p. 15, )
“A growing responsibility for and interest in sustainable development and active participation in society”.(p. 13, )
“An understanding of relationships in nature and different cycles in nature, and how people, nature, and society affect each other;
An understanding of how different choices people make in everyday life can contribute to sustainable development;
An understanding of natural sciences, knowledge of plants and animals, and simple chemical processes and physical phenomena”.(p. 15, )
2.5. Theoretical Perspective
2.6. Methods and Context
Data and Analyses
3. Results: Various Approaches in Systematic Child Talks between Preschool Teachers and Children
3.1. Joint Creation of Meaning
- T: if you think about what you feel you have learned about the animals during our project what do you say?
- C: that you shouldn’t litter in the forest
- T: what do you think is happening then?
- C: then the animals can eat the garbage and get the garbage in their throats
- T: what could we do about it?
- C: when we go out into the forest the next time, maybe we should take a bag with us
- T: we could do that, but what if more people still come and litter? Can we do anything more to try to get everyone else to understand?
- C: make a sign!
- T: make a sign—we could absolutely do that. What would you like to write on it?
- C: greetings—no, “please don’t litter nature because animals can eat it and get litter in their throats and maybe die, please don’t—greetings Preschool X” (anonymized name)
- T: that sounds great! And do you think that would help?
- C: Mmm
- T: Can you tell and describe what the word co-use means?
- C: Money
- T: What more do you think?
- C: You don’t have to buy everything new. You can collaborate and exchange things with each other. You can borrow from other preschools, do you remember that we talked to Preschool Y (anonymized). But you know, they have received things from us, but they haven’t given us anything. Have they forgotten it or …?
- T: We can talk to them and ask about that
- C: Yes please, can we talk to them again, on the computer. But can’t we go there some time, it’s not that far.
- T: What a good idea I think, I think we should do that
- C: Yes
- T: Is there anything else that can be shared?
- C: (thinks for a long time and then says) Books of course. You can borrow books downtown.
- have to buy new things all the time, I’ll tell my mom that
- T: Is there anything else you want to say about co-use?
- C: Just that it is important to share and to collaborate
- T: Why should one co-use?
- C: Because it’s good to learn before you start school. It’s good to learn that you don’t.
3.2. Question and Answer, Focusing on Remembering Facts
- T: Now I was going to ask you what kind of paper it is in the drawer behind you?
- C: (sucks in air)
- T: What kind of paper is that?
- C: Wood
- T: Is it wood?
- T: How do we get our paper here to the preschool?
- C: Don’t know (pause) I don’t know
- T: At home how do you get paper at home that you draw and write on?
- C: (silent) It lags a bit (a comment about the tablet the teacher is using for recording the talk)
- T: What happens when the paper runs out?
- C: Then you have wasted
- T: What do you do when you run out of paper then?
- C: (quick answer) make new paper
- T: Look here NN, this is yours, right? (T brings out NN’s pot)
- T: If you look at the pictures here, do you remember NN what we did here?
- C: Cultivated.
- T: Yes, what have we planted?
- NN is silent and looks thoughtfully at T.
- T: Do you remember what we put in the ground?
- C: No
- T: No. It’s perfectly okay not to remember.
- T: Do you remember what you have planted here? (T points to NN’s own plant)
- C: Cucumber
- T: Cucumber. How nice!
- T: What do you think will happen to the plant when you bring it home?
- C: Grow
- T: It will grow. Will it be more than just leaves? (The plant is currently just leaves)
- C: Cucumber
- T: It will be cucumber. How nice.
- T: NN do you think you’ve learned anything from this cultivation theme we’ve had?
- C: Mm maybe
- T: What have you learned?
- The child walks away
3.3. Following the Children
- C: Look what I found!
- T: What is it?
- C: A dinosaur egg
- T: Wow, where did you find that
- C: Down there (points to the fence and the tree)
- T: Is there anything else
- C: It was there
- T: Is there anything else?
- C: There’s another shell…. It’s probably an ant that has lived in the egg
- T: do you think, yes it is quite a small egg….
- C: So we shall eat. So we live. Good that we live.
- T: Yes that’s good isn’t it?
- C: If we die not good
- T: Yes, no Maybe it’s not so good. We want to live for many years
- C: And torosa is not funny
- T: What’s not funny?
- C: It’s not fun to get torosa
- T: Roses?
- C: No, torosa
- T: Panties?
- C: No (laughs) Torosa
- T: What? Can you explain a bit?
- C: TOROSA. A princess. She sat on a thorn, then she slept for a hundred years.
Institutional Review Board Statement
Informed Consent Statement
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of Interest
- Elliott, E.; Ärlemalm-Hagsér, E.; Davis, J. (Eds.) Researching Early Childhood Education for Sustainability: Challenging Assumptions and Orthodoxies; Routledge: Oxfordshire, UK, 2020. [Google Scholar]
- Ifous. Plan för Forskning—Och Utvecklingsprogrammet: Hållbar Förskola. Plan for the Research- and Development Programme: Sustainable Preschool. Ifous. 2021. Available online: https://www.ifous.se/hallbar-forskola/ (accessed on 3 February 2023).
- Borg, F.; Samuelsson, I.P. Preschool children’s agency in education for sustainability: The case of Sweden. Eur. Early Child. Educ. Res. J. 2022, 30, 147–163. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Siraj-Blatchford, I.; Sylva, K.; Muttock, S.; Gilden, R.; Bell, D. Researching Effective Pedagogy in the Early Years; Research Report No 356; Department of Educational Studies, University of Oxford: Oxford, UK, 2002. [Google Scholar]
- Moss, P. Bringing Politics into the Nursery: Early Childhood Education as a Democratic Practice; Working paper in Early Childhood Education; Bernard van Leer Foundation: The Hague, The Netherlands, 2007. [Google Scholar]
- Engdahl, I.; Samuelsson, I.P.; Ärlemalm-Hagsér, E. Swedish teachers in the process of implementing education for sustainability in early childhood education. New Ideas Child Educ. Psychol. 2021, 1, 3–23. Available online: https://nicepj.ru/articles/2021-1/ (accessed on 28 January 2023).
- Jickling, B.; Sterling, S. (Eds.) Post-Sustainability and Environmental Education: Remaking Education for the Future; Palgrave Macmillan: London, UK, 2017. [Google Scholar]
- United Nations. Sustainable Development Goals: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development; United Nations: New York, NY, USA, 2015; Available online: https://sdgs.un.org/goals (accessed on 28 January 2023).
- United Nations. The Tashkent Declaration and Commitments to Action for Transforming Early Childhood Care and Education; United Nations: New York, NY, USA, 2022; Available online: https://www.unesco.org/sites/default/files/medias/fichiers/2022/11/tashkent-declaration-ecce-2022.pdf (accessed on 25 February 2023).
- United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisati on UNESCO. Education for Sustainable Development: A Roadmap; UNESCO: Paris, France, 2020; Available online: https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000374802 (accessed on 28 January 2023).
- Engdahl, I.; Furu, A.-C. Early childhood education: A vibrant arena in the complex transformation of society towards sustainability. Int. J. Early Child. 2022, 54, 1–12. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
- United Nations. The Convention on the Rights of the Child; United Nations: New York, NY, USA, 1989. [Google Scholar]
- Weldemariam, K.; Chan, A.; Engdahl, I.; Samuelsson, I.P.; Katiba, T.C.; Habte, T.; Muchanga, R. Care and social sustainability in early childhood education: Transnational perspectives. Sustainability 2022, 14, 4952. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Gradovski, M.; Ødegaard, E.E.; Rutanen, R.; Sumsion, J.; Mika, C.; White, J. The First 1000 Days of Early Childhood: Becoming; Springer: Berlin/Heidelberg, Germany, 2019. [Google Scholar]
- National Agency for Education. Barn och Personal i Förskola Hösten 2021; Children and staff in preschool Autumn 2021; NAFE: Solna, Sweden, 2022. [Google Scholar]
- Johansson, E. Etik i Små Barns Värld: Om Värden och Normer Bland de Yngsta Barnen i Förskolan. Ethics in the World of Small Children: About Values and Normsamong the Youngest Children in the Preschool. Göteborg Studies in Educational Sciences 141. Ph.D. Thesis, Acta Universitatis Gothoburgensis, Göteborg, Sweden, 1999. [Google Scholar]
- Meltzoff, A.N.; Moore, M.K. Persons and representations: Why infant imitation is important for theories of human development. In Imitation in Infancy; Nadel, J., Butterworth, G., Eds.; Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, UK, 1999; pp. 9–35. [Google Scholar]
- Stern, D.N. The Interpersonal World of the Infant; Basic Books: New York, NY, USA, 1985. [Google Scholar]
- Stern, D.N. The Present Moment in Psychotherapy and Everyday Life; W.W. Norton & Company: New York, NY, USA, 2004. [Google Scholar]
- Vygotskij, L.S. Mind in Society: The Development of Higher Psychological Processes; Harvard University Press: Cambridge, MA, USA, 1978. [Google Scholar]
- Pramling, I. Understanding and empowering the child as a learner. In Handbook of Education and Human Development: New Models of Learning, Teaching and Schooling; Olson, D., Torrance, N., Eds.; Basil Blackwell: Oxford, UK, 1996; pp. 565–589. [Google Scholar]
- Pramling, N.; Wallerstedt, C.; Lagerlöf, P.; Björklund, C.; Kultti, A.; Palmér, H.; Magnusson, M.; Thulin, S.; Jonsson, A.; Samuelsson, I.P. Play-Responsive Teaching in Early Childhood Education; Springer: Berlin/Heidelberg, Germany, 2019; Available online: https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007%2F978-3-030-15958-0 (accessed on 11 January 2023).
- Trevarthen, C.; Aitken, K.J. Infant intersubjectivity: Research, theory, and clinical applications. J. Child Psychol. Psychiatry 2001, 42, 3–48. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef] [PubMed]
- Siraj-Blatchford, I.; Taggart, B.; Sylva, K.; Sammons, P.; Melhuish, E. Toward the transformation of practice in early education: The effective provision of preschool education (EPPE) project. Camb. J. Educ. 2008, 38, 23–36. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Haroutunian-Gordon, S.; Laverty, M.J. Listening: An exploration of philosophical traditions. Educ. Theory 2011, 61, 117–124. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Andrén, M.; Zetterqvist Nelson, K. Introduktion: Att lyssna på barn, nya infallsvinklar, nya perspektiv. (Introduction: Listening to children, new angels of approach, new perspectives). Barn 2022, 40, 1–7. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Doverborg, E.; Pramling, N.; Samuelsson, I.P. Att Undervisa Barn i Förskolan, 2nd ed.; Teaching Children in Preschool; Liber: Stockholm, Sweden, 2019. [Google Scholar]
- Johansson, E. Learning encounters in preschool: Interaction between atmosphere, view of children and of learning. Int. J. Early Child. 2004, 36, 9–26. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Ødegaard, E.E. Reimagining “Collaborative Exploration”: A signature pedagogy for sustainability in early childhood education and care. Sustainability 2021, 13, 5139. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- Ärlemalm-Hagsér, E.; Engdahl, I. Caring for oneself, others and the environment: EFS in Swedish preschools. In Young Children and the Environment: Early Education for Sustainability, 2nd ed.; Davis, J.M., Ed.; Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, UK, 2015; pp. 253–265. [Google Scholar]
- Ärlemalm-Hagsér, E. Minds on Earth hour: A theme for sustainability in Swedish early childhood education. Early Child Dev. Care 2013, 183, 1782–1795. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef][Green Version]
- Borg, F. Caring for People and the Planet: Preschool Children’s Knowledge and Practices of Sustainability. Ph.D. Dissertation, Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden, 2017. [Google Scholar]
- Hedefalk, M.; Caiman, C.; Ottander, O. Deliberation och Kritik i Förskolans Undervisning för Hållbar Utveckling: “Så Att Det bli Snällt Där i Världen”. Forsk. Om Undervis. Och Lärande 2022, 10, 88–108. [Google Scholar]
- Engdahl, I. Early childhood education for sustainability: The OMEP world project. Int. J. Early Child. 2015, 47, 347–366. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef]
- National Agency for Education. National Curriculum for the Preschool: Lpfö 18; National Agency for Education: Solna, Sweden, 2019; Available online: https://www.skolverket.se/getFile?file=4049 (accessed on 11 January 2023).
- Skollagen. (SFS 2010:800); The Education Act; Utbildningsdepartementet: Stockholm, Sweden, 2010; Available online: https://www.riksdagen.se/sv/dokument-lagar/dokument/svensk-forfattningssamling/skollag-2010800_sfs-2010-800 (accessed on 28 February 2023).
- Pramling, I. The Child’s Conception of Learning. Ph.D. Dissertation, Acta Universitatis Gothoburgensis, Göteborg, Sweden, 1983. [Google Scholar]
- Björklund, C.; Samuelsson, I.P. (Eds.) Innehållets Didaktik i Förskolan; Content Didactics in Preschool; Liber: Stockholm, Sweden, 2020; Available online: http://libris.kb.se/bib/bnx9136982xc9xbf (accessed on 3 February 2023).
- Doverborg, E.; Samuelsson, I.P. Att Förstå Barns Tankar: Metodik för Barnintervjuer; Understanding Children’s Thoughts: A Methodology for Child Interviews; Liber: Stockholm, Sweden, 2012. [Google Scholar]
- Kvale, S.; Brinkmann, S. Den Kvalitativa Forskningsmetoden; The Qualitative Research Method; Studentlitteratur: Lund, Sweden, 2014. [Google Scholar]
- Samuelsson, I.P. A retrospective view on researchers’ and preschool teachers’ collaboration: The case of developing children’s learning in preschool. In Methodology for Research with Early Childhood Education and Care Professionals; Wallerstedt, C., Brooks, E., Ødegaard, E.E., Pramling, N., Eds.; Springer: Berlin/Heidelberg, Germany, 2023. [Google Scholar]
- University of Uppsala. Codex: Samling av Regler och Riktlinjer för Forskning; University of Uppsala: Uppsala, Sweden, 2021; Available online: www.codex.uu.se (accessed on 28 February 2023).
- Braun, V.; Clark, V. Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qual. Res. Psychol. 2006, 3, 77–101. [Google Scholar] [CrossRef][Green Version]
- Wertsch, J.V. Mind as Action; Oxford University Press: Oxford, UK, 1998. [Google Scholar]
- Dahlberg, G.; Moss, P. Ethics and Politics in Early Childhood Education; Routledge: Oxfordshire, UK, 2004. [Google Scholar]
- United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation UNESCO. Global Partnership Strategy for Early Childhood, 2021–2030; UNESCO: Paris, France, 2022; Available online: https://www.unesco.org/en/early-childhood-education/partnership-strategy#:~:text=As%20a%20result%20the%20Global,sanitation%2C%20and%20child%20protection%20worldwide (accessed on 28 February 2023).
Disclaimer/Publisher’s Note: The statements, opinions and data contained in all publications are solely those of the individual author(s) and contributor(s) and not of MDPI and/or the editor(s). MDPI and/or the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to people or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content.
© 2023 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Share and Cite
Engdahl, I.; Pramling Samuelsson, I.; Ärlemalm-Hagsér, E. Systematic Child Talks in Early Childhood Education—A Method for Sustainability. Children 2023, 10, 661. https://doi.org/10.3390/children10040661
Engdahl I, Pramling Samuelsson I, Ärlemalm-Hagsér E. Systematic Child Talks in Early Childhood Education—A Method for Sustainability. Children. 2023; 10(4):661. https://doi.org/10.3390/children10040661Chicago/Turabian Style
Engdahl, Ingrid, Ingrid Pramling Samuelsson, and Eva Ärlemalm-Hagsér. 2023. "Systematic Child Talks in Early Childhood Education—A Method for Sustainability" Children 10, no. 4: 661. https://doi.org/10.3390/children10040661