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U2020-Norsk utdanningsforskning 2009-2018

Places for learning, care and growth - The physical environments in early childhood education and care institutions (ECECI) in Norway

Awarded: NOK 0.50 mill.

The project will develop research methods for gaining new knowledge about the impact of physical environment on children's learning, care and growth in kindergarten, and with a focus on learning areas in the Framework Plan for the Content and Tasks of Kin dergartens. The project is interdisciplinary, and includes both pedagogical and architectonic perspectives on the kindergartens physical environment. A successful integration between the two fields will depend on mutual insight and knowledge in each oth ers scientific language and methodological approaches. Several scientific terms including the pedagogical environment are already in use, such as pedagogical discourses (Aasebø & Melhuus, 2005; Halloway & Valentine, 2000), the room as pedagogical text (Mo ser, 2007), children's topology (Amundsen et al., 2007) and the physical environment as "affordances" (Sandseter, 2007, Fjørtoft, 2000). New knowledge about children's topology will give more insight and respect for children's places in kindergarten, and enable preschool teachers and architects to implement the knowledge in their professional prtactices and discources. The project intends to be the first step of a moderate or large-scale project. This mainly includes the preparatory assessment to meet me thodological and theoretical challenges regarding to cooperation between quite different academic disciplines. The primary goal is to develop good and feasible methodologies as well as a database containing the results and experiences from international r esearch- and development projects focusing on space in early childhood education. Despite of the character of a pre-project, the body of knowledge to be collected, analyzed and presented as a result of the pre-project, will be of substantial relevance for institutions for pre-school teacher education.

Funding scheme:

U2020-Norsk utdanningsforskning 2009-2018