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Title: Spirituality in the classroom : a study of primary school pupils' experiences and learning
Author: Ng, Yee-Ling
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: York St John University
Date of Award: 2012
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Different proponents of children's spirituality have argued that children of all ages can have spiritual experiences and that these may be expressed in different ways. Consequently, there are academics, researchers, policy makers and educators who argue for the inclusion of spiritual development within schools. Although there is increasing interest in research undertaken in the field of children's spirituality and spiritual development, this thesis contends that there is a gap between the recognition of the importance of spirituality, policy directives and the practicalities of developing spirituality within the classroom. Thus, an investigation was developed, which captures the experiences and learning reflections of four cohorts of key stage two, English primary school pupils (7-9 years) who have participated in a literature-derived spiritual development programme. Through phenomenographic analysis, themes or categories of descriptions were developed from the data collected (diaries - text and drawings, discussions, quasi-quantitative questionnaires and interviews). These themes highlight variations in pupils' experiences and learning. The experiential themes stemming from the analysis reinforce some constructs of children's spirituality found in literature. However, the originality of the thesis lies in its pedagogical focus, providing data that highlights pupils' and educators' (teachers' and teaching assistants') reflections on learning in the classroom. As such, pupils' and educators' reflections on learning may have potential implications for pedagogy and practice. In summation, the findings reveal that "tools" such as silence, meaning, focusing, questioning, bodily awareness, reflection, use of one's imagination, and communication and sharing could be used in the classroom to develop children's spirituality.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available