Capturing what is of value to children : a study exploring the challenges, advantages and issues of participatory research with 5 and 6 year olds

Webster, Rebecca (2012) Capturing what is of value to children : a study exploring the challenges, advantages and issues of participatory research with 5 and 6 year olds. Doctoral thesis, University of East Anglia.

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Listening to young children in order to elicit their views, consider their
perceptions, and act upon their ideas has become increasingly prominent
in policy and research with children. Momentum has gathered in this area
since the 1989 United Nations Convention for the Rights of the Child and
the Children’s Act (2004) in the United Kingdom. These documents
committed British policy to the inclusion of children’s voices in matters and
services which impact on their lives. Educational research which promotes
children’s voices tends to be dominated with projects which include older
children, either in the upper stages of their primary education and above,
or based in preschool and the transitional phase into schooling. This
research gathers perceptions from three cohorts of children in Year 1
(aged 5-6) in England to find out what is important to them and considers
the challenges and opportunities which these perceptions present.
Using hand-held video cameras as a method of data collection the children
filmed what was important to them. A range of activities were developed to
support the children in their filming. These included puppetry, drawing,
guided tours, interviewing, play and opportunities for filming at home. The
children and their class teachers were invited to review and discuss the
video clips with the researcher. A thematic content analysis was used to
code and categorise the data. A reflexive approach is woven into the
methodological discussion and is followed throughout the analysis and
findings of the research.
Findings indicate that the video methods used to capture children’s
perceptions present ethical and methodological challenges. Despite this,
the methods are advantageous in enabling a range of multi-faceted and
complex relationships to come to the fore. Issues of personal ‘things’,
space, rules and boundaries, both at home and at school draw attention to
the environmental, physical and non-physical ‘containment’ which impacts
on children’s lives. Teachers’ responses to the children’s video footage
were influenced by their professional epistemology and experiences.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Education and Lifelong Learning
Depositing User: Users 2593 not found.
Date Deposited: 10 Jul 2013 15:21
Last Modified: 10 Jul 2013 15:21

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