04 SES 14 C, Analyzing Spatial Practices in Relation to Inclusion/Exclusion in Different Educational Settings
This paper aims to describe and discuss how spatial constructions and organisations of Kindergarten interact with children’s possibilities to inclusion and recognition. Since 2006, all children in Norway have a legal right to attend Kindergarten from the age of one (Kindergarten Act, 2016). Today 97 % of Norwegian children aged 3 – 5 attend Kindergarten (SSB, 2016).While the traditional Kindergartens have few rooms with defined use, stable groups of children and care-givers, the recently build Kindergartens have many rooms with flexible defined groups of children, care-givers and use. Alongside this extension, the idea of children as competent individuals, which are able to codetermine and participate in decision-making in matters that affect them, was reinforced within the pedagogical field of elementary education (Seland, 2009; Kjørholt 2011, Skalicka et al. 2015). In our paper we will refer top data taken from a qualitative study, based on a a strategic sample of 24 children (aged 4 – 5 years) from six Kindergartens in rural and urban areas. Eight children with intellectual-, sensory-, language- or behavioral difficulties participated. We established research-groups consisting of us and children with and without disabilities. Together we constructed data through life-form interviews, drawings, photos, Duplo-brick building, and children guided tours. We followed an ‘Constructive Grounded Theory’ approach, as suggested by Charmaz (2014). Results show that all children tried hard to capture the physical and social spaces in all the Kindergartens. However, (i) in the traditional-group-organised Kindergartens children with disabilities knew the names of their care-givers, were able to describe and show us the different rooms available in their department, tell us what and where they used to play, what equipment they found attractive and available. The children were allowed to stay in attractive physical spaces in- and outdoors with caregivers available and positioned at well-known places defined by children as accessible and affordable. (ii) In the flexible-group-organised Kindergartens, the children did not know the names of all care-givers. They guided us to rooms, but their descriptions of what was going on in these rooms differed from the descriptions given by their caregivers. (iii) Across organisations, all children in large Kindergartens showed us physically locked doors to attractive rooms and prohibited-signs to prevent running indoors. Physical and social space interact and correspond with children’s possibilities to inclusion. However, children in need of predictable, structural frames struggled to become aware of what was going on, where, and when in the large Kindergartens.
Charmaz, K. (2014). Constructing Grounded Theory. Los Angeles Sage. Kindergarten Act (2016) - Act no. 64 of June 2005, into force in 2006 – last revised in 2016. Kjørholt, A. T., & Qvortrup, J. (2011). Modern child and the flexible labour market: Early childhood education and care. Basington, UK: Macmillan. Ministry of Education and Research. (2017). Framework Plan for Kinder¬gartens. Revised version (2017). Oslo. Seland, M. (2009). Det moderne barn og den fleksible barnehagen: en etnografisk studie av barnehagens hverdagsliv i lys av nyere diskurser og kommunal virkelighet. (2009:258), Norges teknisk-naturvitenskapelige universitet, Trondheim. Skalická, V., Belsky, J., Stenseng, F., & Wichstrøm, L. (2015). Preschool-Age Problem Behavior and Teacher–Child Conflict in School: Direct and Moderation Effects by Preschool Organization. Child Development, 86(3), 955-964. doi: 10.1111/cdev.12350 SSB (Statistics Norway). https://www.ssb.no/utdanning/statistikker/barnehager/aar-endelige/2017-03-21 downloaded 2018-01-25
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