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ABS275 - Children’s resistance in the emergence of learning as leading activity: Playfulness in the transformation of spaces of participation

1.2 Children’s development and childhood
Paper in a Symposium (Symp)
4:20 PM, Tuesday 29 Aug 2017 (30 minutes)
From first-year primary school (FYP), learning subject matter becomes the main activity of the traditional school practice, replacing and clashing with the previous one: play. Thus, children encounter an educational institutional practice that demands the display of new skills, attitudes and knowledge for ensuring their participation in a new socio-material arrangement. As a consequence, a variety of reactions can be observed in children, from engagement to struggle, resistance and rebellion. One of the main issues is the still rather unknown process of the shift from play to subject matter learning as the leading activity. The purpose of this paper is to explore the emergence of learning as a leading activity focusing on the function of children’s resistances to the new conditions. Drawing on a study taking the child’s perspective on the transition to FYP in two educational traditions (Danish and Chilean) the following ideas are unfolded: resistance and transformation are part of the process of emergence of learning as the new leading activity; resistance works on two intertwined levels, i.e. in the process of making sense of the demands required by the new social practice, individuals must also resist their own needs and wishes oriented to previous motives; playfulness can be seen as a particular form of resisting and transforming the current conditions based on the functions of play as the previous leading activity; and actions of resistance are culturally and historically shaped sets of demands; but personally related to the individual’s trajectories and interests.
Aalborg University
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