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Areljung, S. (2018). Why do teachers adopt or resist a pedagogical idea for teaching science in preschool?. International Journal of Early Years Education
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Why do teachers adopt or resist a pedagogical idea for teaching science in preschool?
2018 (English)In: International Journal of Early Years Education, ISSN 0966-9760, E-ISSN 1469-8463Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

Numerous initiatives are carried out across the world to support science teaching in early childhood education. However, professional development research shows that in order for teaching interventions to bring about successful changes in practice, it is key that teacher’s beliefs, confidence and knowledge change. As a complement to studies showing how teachers change, this article examines why teachers adopt a pedagogical idea for teaching science in preschool. Drawing on Clarke and Hollingsworth’s model for teacher professional growth, the article analyses interviews with teachers that have implemented and developed a pedagogical idea for teaching science in preschool. The results indicate that teachers adopt the pedagogical idea because it helps them to discern and build on science content in everyday practice, which they prefer to their previous way of teaching science through occasional experiments. Further the results show that teachers balance several external influences on what is good preschool pedagogy. The particular pedagogical idea eases that balancing act since it aligns with, and helps teachers to make meaning of, many of these influences.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2018
Keywords
science education, preschool, professional development, teacher-researcher collaboration, early childhood education
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Research subject
educational work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-135093 (URN)10.1080/09669760.2018.1481733 (DOI)
Note

Originally included in thesis in manuscript form.

Available from: 2017-05-18 Created: 2017-05-18 Last updated: 2019-04-05
Areljung, S., Ottander, C. & Due, K. (2017). "Drawing the leaves anyway": teachers embracing children's different ways of knowing in preschool science practice. Research in science education, 47(6), 1173-1192
Open this publication in new window or tab >>"Drawing the leaves anyway": teachers embracing children's different ways of knowing in preschool science practice
2017 (English)In: Research in science education, ISSN 0157-244X, E-ISSN 1573-1898, Vol. 47, no 6, p. 1173-1192Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study explores if and how teachers combine practices of science and of preschool (children 1–5 years old) into preschool science practice. Views of knowing may differ between science practices, traditionally associated with masculinity and rationality, and preschool practices, traditionally associated with femininity and caring. Recognising this, wehave chosen to focus on how teachers’ talk constructs and relates to possible ways of gaining knowledge and reaching explanations of phenomena in preschool science. The analysis buildson two concept pairs often associated with gender as well as knowing: objective-subjective and logical-intuitive. The analysed material consists of 11 group interviews where preschool teachers talk about activities concerning science content. Our results show that several ways of knowing are possible in work with science content in preschool. These include ways of knowing more associated with subjectivity, such as ‘individual liking’ and ‘whole-body perception’, as well as more associated with objectivity, such as ‘noticing differences and similarities’. Furthermore, the results show that the teachers’ talk moves readily between possibilities associated with femininity (subjective and intuitive) and masculinity (objective and logical). This indicates that the teachers in this study have found ways to handle science in preschool that goes against presumed tensions between science and preschool practices. The results contribute to more nuanced ways of describing and thinking about science in preschool and pave the way for further development of science education in early childhood education.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2017
Keywords
Early childhood education, Science education, Preschool teachers, Gendered practices
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Research subject
educational work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-127418 (URN)10.1007/s11165-016-9557-3 (DOI)000416157800001 ()
Projects
Förskolans praktik i mötet med naturvetenskap
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 721 2011 5657
Available from: 2016-11-10 Created: 2016-11-10 Last updated: 2018-06-09Bibliographically approved
Areljung, S. & Kelly-Ware, J. (2017). Navigating the risky terrain of children's working theories. Early years, 37(4), 370-385
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Navigating the risky terrain of children's working theories
2017 (English)In: Early years, ISSN 0957-5146, E-ISSN 1472-4421, Vol. 37, no 4, p. 370-385Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

'Working theories' encompass children's theorising about the social and material worlds. This article looks explicitly at power relations involved in pedagogy around children's working theories by focusing on the teacher's control of what and whose working theories get unpacked and extended. From an analysis of four cases from early childhood education (ECE) settings, it is concluded that teaching strategies are related to possible risks of unpacking and extending children's working theories. From a teacher's perspective such risks include: undermining the ECE setting's rules; exposing one's own lack of knowledge or skills; or risking the relations and atmosphere in the group or setting. These risks affect how working theories are dealt with in terms of time – right away, later or never – and voicing, as teachers regulate children's ideas for example through making concrete, reconstructing or silencing them.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2017
Keywords
early childhood, working theories, pedagogy, teaching strategies, power
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Research subject
educational work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-126042 (URN)10.1080/09575146.2016.1191441 (DOI)000415635000004 ()
Available from: 2016-09-27 Created: 2016-09-27 Last updated: 2018-06-07Bibliographically approved
Areljung, S. (2017). Utanför experimentlådan: kunskapsproduktion, tid och materia i förskolans naturvetenskapsundervisning. (Doctoral dissertation). Umeå: Umeå universitet
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Utanför experimentlådan: kunskapsproduktion, tid och materia i förskolans naturvetenskapsundervisning
2017 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Alternative title[en]
Outside the science box : knowledge production, time, and matter in preschool science teaching
Abstract [en]

The aim of this thesis is to contribute knowledge on conditions for science teaching in preschool. While Swedish preschool practices commonly build on children’s subjective experiences, scientific knowledge production is often associated with objectivity and detachedness. Seen from that perspective, tensions may occur when the knowledge cultures of preschool and science meet, as when science teaching is implemented in preschool. This thesis seeks to explore issues that are crucial for teachers to negotiate when they implement science teaching in preschool.

The thesis includes five articles that build on empirical data in the form of teachers’ talk (interviews, focus group discussion, project meetings) and observation data from preschool practice. The data analyses draw on various theoretical perspectives, including communities of practice and feminist critique of science as well as theoretical concepts connected to framing and agential realism.

The main result is that it is crucial, to teachers’ implementation of science teaching in preschool, that science content is open to children’s contributions. Further, the results show that teachers integrate several different forms of knowledge production when working with science content in practice. For example, observations and systematic investigations are combined with imagination and children’s bodily experiences. This goes against the presumed tensions between the knowledge cultures of preschool and science. However, tensions between the knowledge cultures are indicated by teachers’ unwillingness to interfere with children’s investigative processes or ideas about science content by relating children’s ideas to scientific explanatory models. Seen from a teacher’s perspective, it appears to be unproblematic to leave children’s ideas about science content unresolved, compared to leaving children’s ideas about social relations and other content unresolved.

Drawing on the results, I discuss teaching beyond the limited material and temporal dimensions of the science box, which emerges as a metaphor when teachers describe a way of teaching that they are not comfortable with. Further, I suggest that the concept working theories, which addresses children’s tentative ideas about relations in their surrounding world, be introduced in preschool science teaching, to ease the perceived conflict between children’s ideas about science and scientific explanatory models.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå universitet, 2017. p. 98
Series
Doktorsavhandlingar i pedagogiskt arbete, ISSN 1650-8858 ; 78
Keywords
preschool, science education, knowledge cultures, symbolic gender, working theories, time, matter, design-based research
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Research subject
educational work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-135095 (URN)978-91-7601-708-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2017-06-13, N360, Naturvetarhuset, Umeå, 13:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Projects
Förskolans praktik i mötet med naturvetenskapMiljöer för naturvetenskap i förskolan
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 2011-5657
Available from: 2017-05-23 Created: 2017-05-18 Last updated: 2018-06-09Bibliographically approved
Sundberg, B., Areljung, S., Due, K., Ottander, C. & Tellgren, B. (2016). Förskolans naturvetenskap i praktiken (1ed.). Malmö: Gleerups Utbildning AB
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Förskolans naturvetenskap i praktiken
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2016 (Swedish)Book (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
Abstract [sv]

Enligt förskolans läroplan ska varje barn ges möjlighet att utveckla förståelse för naturvetenskap. Barnen ska stimuleras att aktivt undersöka sin omvärld och tänka själva kring naturvetenskap. De ska också ges möjlighet att dela sina tankar och uttrycka dem på ett kreativt sätt. Men hur gör man det i praktiken? Hur kan man som pedagog stötta ett barn så att det utvecklas i sin förmåga att ställa frågor och undersöka? Hur stöttar man barns reflektioner kring de erfarenheter de får via undersökande verksamhet? Och hur gör man det på ett sätt som stämmer med förskolans värdegrund och övriga uppdrag?

I den här boken ger författarna en mängd konkreta och inspirerande exempel på hur några förskolor har valt att arbeta med naturvetenskap. Den forskning som boken bygger på visar att pedagogernas förhållningssätt till naturvetenskap, snarare än valet av innehåll, är avgörande för om barnen verkligen erbjuds en möjlighet att utveckla förståelse för naturvetenskap. Bokens exempel utgår därför från olika förhållningssätt som man kan ha i samband med naturvetenskapliga aktiviteter. Till varje kapitel hör en eller flera faktarutor där det naturvetenskapliga innehållet förklaras och knyts till generella bärande idéer inom naturvetenskapen.

Boken spänner över stora delar av det naturvetenskapliga fältet, och visar att det finns många olika sätt att låta barn möta naturvetenskap på. Exemplen i boken vidgar gränserna för hur man kan arbeta med naturvetenskap i förskolan och öppnar för möjligheter till många lustfyllda, engagerande och lärande stunder med barnen.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Malmö: Gleerups Utbildning AB, 2016. p. 160 Edition: 1
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-133330 (URN)978-91-40-69108-8 (ISBN)
Projects
Förskolans praktik i mötet med naturvetenskap
Available from: 2017-04-05 Created: 2017-04-05 Last updated: 2018-06-09Bibliographically approved
Areljung, S. (2016). Relocalisations and renegotiations: framing a project about science in preschool. In: Shirley Simon, Christina Ottander, and Ilka Parchmann (Ed.), Narratives of doctoral studies in science education: making the transition from educational practitioner to researcher (pp. 19-30). Routledge
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Relocalisations and renegotiations: framing a project about science in preschool
2016 (English)In: Narratives of doctoral studies in science education: making the transition from educational practitioner to researcher / [ed] Shirley Simon, Christina Ottander, and Ilka Parchmann, Routledge, 2016, p. 19-30Chapter in book (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The chapter covers my first year of doctoral studies. I reflect on how my experience as a school science teacher comes into play when researching science practice in preschool (children aged 1-5 years). The chapter exposes how literature, a pilot study, and my participation in a larger research project and two graduate schools, have been woven into each other in the framing of my doctoral project. Further it shows why I have refined my research project in order to include the physical environment as an important aspect of science practice in preschool.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2016
Series
Routledge Research in Higher Education
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
didactics of natural science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-109702 (URN)978-1-138-89028-2 (ISBN)978-1-315-71249-9 (ISBN)
Available from: 2015-10-05 Created: 2015-10-05 Last updated: 2018-06-07Bibliographically approved
Areljung, S. (2016). Science verbs as a tool for investigating scientific phenomena: a pedagogical idea emerging from practitioner-researcher collaboration. NorDiNa: Nordic Studies in Science Education, 12(2), 235-245
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Science verbs as a tool for investigating scientific phenomena: a pedagogical idea emerging from practitioner-researcher collaboration
2016 (English)In: NorDiNa: Nordic Studies in Science Education, ISSN 1504-4556, E-ISSN 1894-1257, Vol. 12, no 2, p. 235-245Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper communicates the pedagogical idea of approaching scientific phenomena through verbs. The idea has sprung from a collaboration between preschool practitioners and a researcher, addressing science education in preschool (children aged 1-5 years). Drawing on a joint problem inventory, the project group aimed to create a teaching model that supports inquiry-oriented approaches to science, and teachers’ ability of distinguishing chemical processes and physics phenomena in everyday practice. The core idea of the teaching model turned out to be a list of everyday verbs, connected to scientific phenomena. Starting from verbs appear to help teachers to recognise the scientific phenomena in everyday practice. Further, the verbs guide the formulating of questions that can be answered by scientific inquiry, such as: ''what matters to how something melts/rolls/mixes?''.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Oslo: Naturfagsenteret, 2016
Keywords
Science, inquiry-oriented, preschool, design-based research
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Research subject
educational work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-126043 (URN)
Available from: 2016-09-27 Created: 2016-09-27 Last updated: 2018-06-07Bibliographically approved
Sundberg, B., Areljung, S., Due, K., Ekström, K., Ottander, C. & Tellgren, B. (2016). Understanding preschool emergent science in a cultural historical context through Activity Theory. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, 24(4), 567-580
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Understanding preschool emergent science in a cultural historical context through Activity Theory
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2016 (English)In: European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, ISSN 1350-293X, E-ISSN 1752-1807, Vol. 24, no 4, p. 567-580Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The aim of this study is to explore how cultural factors interact with preschool teachers’ shaping of activities with science content, and also how Activity Theory (AT) as a theoretical framework can be useful for examining interrelations within preschool systems. Qualitative data was collected from three preschools in the form of guided group discussions with preschool teachers, observations and video recordings of activities, and stimulated recall discussions based on the recorded practices. The preschools displayed diverse approaches for experiencing and learning science, some with great creativity. In all preschools learning was integrated with care, upbringing and play. To support children’s interest and confidence was central. How science activities were shaped mainly depended on how children’s interests were allowed to govern practice. The use of AT as an analytical tool was proven to be effective in identifying the elements, relationships and tensions crucial for understanding the framing of science activities. 

Keywords
Activity Theory (AT), preschool practice, preschool culture, science teaching, emergent science
National Category
Didactics
Research subject
didactics of natural science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-110714 (URN)10.1080/1350293X.2014.978557 (DOI)000380367400007 ()
External cooperation:
Projects
Förskolans praktik i mötet med naturvetenskap
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 721 2011 5657
Available from: 2015-10-26 Created: 2015-10-26 Last updated: 2018-06-07Bibliographically approved
Areljung, S. (2015). Att undersöka fysikaliska fenomen och kemiska processer utifrån vardagsverb. In: : . Paper presented at Nationell konferens om naturvetenskap och teknik i förskolan, Borås, 14-15 oktober, 2015..
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Att undersöka fysikaliska fenomen och kemiska processer utifrån vardagsverb
2015 (Swedish)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Other academic)
Abstract [sv]

Det är vanligt att naturvetenskapsteman har namn i form av substantiv, som Skogen, Vatten, Svampar och Kroppen. Här presenteras idén att istället utgå från vardagsverb – som rulla, snurra, balansera, blanda och fastna – i undersökandet av naturvetenskapliga fenomen. Idén att utgå från verb har utvecklats i samarbete med ett pedagogiskt utvecklingscentrum och en förskola och de praktiska exemplen kommer från förskolans arbete med ”rulla, snurra” (fysik) och ”blanda” (kemi). Under presentationen behandlas frågor som: Hur får man fatt i fysikaliska fenomen och kemiska processer i barns samspel med omvärlden? Vilka frågor kan man ställa som blir praktiskt undersökningsbara? Hur kan man arbeta undersökande med flera estetiska uttryckssätt?

National Category
Pedagogical Work
Research subject
didactics of natural science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-110722 (URN)
Conference
Nationell konferens om naturvetenskap och teknik i förskolan, Borås, 14-15 oktober, 2015.
Projects
Miljöer för naturvetenskap
Available from: 2015-10-26 Created: 2015-10-26 Last updated: 2018-06-07Bibliographically approved
Areljung, S. (2015). Barns ”working theories” (provisoriska förklaringsmodeller) om naturen och den sociala världen – en riskabel terräng?. In: : . Paper presented at Nationell konferens för naturvetenskap och teknik i förskolan, Borås, 14-15 oktober, 2015..
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Barns ”working theories” (provisoriska förklaringsmodeller) om naturen och den sociala världen – en riskabel terräng?
2015 (Swedish)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Other academic)
Abstract [sv]

Begreppet ”working theories” härstammar från Nya Zeelands läroplan och rör barns provisoriska förklaringsmodeller för olika företeelser i omvärlden – både i den sociala världen och i naturen. Det kan gälla allt från barns idéer om hjärtats roll i kroppen och varför saker låter olika när man knackar på dem, till idéer om hur det går till när man går på bio eller hur en bra vän ska bete sig. ”Working theories” är en kombination av barns kunskaper, erfarenheter och fantasi och de utvecklas allteftersom barnen gör sig fler erfarenheter och ställs inför ny information.

Denna presentation utgår från exempel från både svenska och nyzeeländska förskolor. Här lyfts möjliga fördelar med att använda ”working theories” som ett begrepp i arbetet med naturvetenskap i förskoleverksamheten och även hur olika risker kan påverka hur och när förskolans personal hanterar barns ”working theories”. Exempel på fördelar är att inte behöva sätta etikett på barns förklaringar som ”rätt” eller ”fel” eller att se ”faktabaserade resonemang” som oförenligt med kreativt tänkande och fantasi. Exempel på risker är: att riskera relationer i barngruppen, att etablera feluppfattningar hos barnen eller att riskera sin roll som ”Vetande vuxen” eller ”Konfliktlösande”. 

National Category
Pedagogical Work
Research subject
didactics of natural science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-110724 (URN)
Conference
Nationell konferens för naturvetenskap och teknik i förskolan, Borås, 14-15 oktober, 2015.
Available from: 2015-10-26 Created: 2015-10-26 Last updated: 2018-06-07Bibliographically approved
Organisations
Identifiers
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0001-7273-5442

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