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Title: Capturing what is of value to children : a study exploring the challenges, advantages and issues of participatory research with 5 and 6 year olds
Author: Webster, Rebecca
ISNI:       0000 0004 2739 5559
Awarding Body: University of East Anglia
Current Institution: University of East Anglia
Date of Award: 2012
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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.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available