Lärande för hållbar utveckling i förskolan: Kunskapsinnehåll, delaktighet och aktörskap kommunicerat i text

Eva Ärlemalm-Hagsér

Abstract


Title: Education for sustainable development - knowledge content, participation and agency

Abstract: This article in educational science scrutinizes education for sustainable development in the Swedish preschool and the ways that young children are described as active participants and agents of change. A critical theory lens was applied in combination with content analysis. Data were derived from 18 applications from preschools to the Swedish National Agency for Education applying for a 'diploma of excellence' in sustainable development. The qualitative content analysis revealed two overarching themes: a) preschoolers’ sense of self and others, and b) preschoolers’ relationships with place, technologies and materials. Within these themes, nine knowledge content areas relevant to education for sustainable development were identified. In these contents children’s participation and agency was mostly seen as listening and taking part in’ and only in some extent children were seen as agents for change. Even if, the overall rhetoric in the texts had a child rights perspective children’s voices are not really recognised to any great extent as participants or as agents of change. An affirmative approach where detected, where underlying structures of knowledge, content or ways to work not was challenge or transformed.


Keywords


Education for sustainable development, Early childhood education; Critical theory; Participation; Knowledge content

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