Exploring children's environmental understandings through the arts

Sorin, Reesa, Brooks, Tamara, and Haring, Ute (2012) Exploring children's environmental understandings through the arts. Creative Approaches to Research, 5 (1). pp. 15-31.

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The last several decades have seen an abundance of research examining the growing disconnect between children and their local, natural environments. This divide has been labelled with terms such as 'biophobia' (Wilson, 1984), 'extinction of experience' (Pyle, 1993) and 'nature deficit disorder' (Louv, 2005, 2008). Crook (1985) argues that the content of children's drawings may provide valuable insights into their thoughts and feelings about the world (cited in Barazza, 1999). Visual mediums of data collection have often been overlooked because of traditionally favoured written and spoken modes. Indeed, the visual aspects of early literacy in particular and graphical forms of representation in general are under-valued, under-researched and under-represented (Anning, 2003: 5, cited in Kendrick & McKay, 2004, p.126). Qualitative methods have been found to capture children’s experiences in a more accurate and child-friendly manner (Benson, 2009). This paper explores ways of collecting and analysing data using drawings alongside other art forms such as drama and storytelling. We discuss methods we have trialled for both data collection and analysis in research with young children about environmental sustainability and our reasons for supporting the use of the arts as research tools.

Item ID: 24845
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1835-9434
Keywords: arts-based research, early childhood education, environmental education,
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Date Deposited: 26 Mar 2013 06:20
FoR Codes: 13 EDUCATION > 1301 Education Systems > 130102 Early Childhood Education (excl Maori) @ 50%
13 EDUCATION > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130399 Specialist Studies in Education not elsewhere classified @ 50%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9301 Learner and Learning > 930102 Learner and Learning Processes @ 50%
93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9399 Other Education and Training > 939999 Education and Training not elsewhere classified @ 50%
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