What you will study
The module consists of three blocks:
Block 1: Foundations for listening to all children
You'll consider what listening to children means by studying different theoretical and historical ideas around the significance of the child's voice and children's participation. You'll reflect on the complexity of young children's lives and explore different situations in which listening is key; for example, for children who are multi-lingual or experiencing transition and change.
Block 2: Responding to the child – how do we listen?
You’ll engage with different approaches to listening that have been used in early childhood research and practice. Throughout this block, you’ll study Alison Clark’s Mosaic approach in depth, as well as several other methods that promote children’s participation. You’ll develop your knowledge and understanding of how listening to young children can be put into practice as well as exploring some of the ethical issues that can arise.
Block 3: Listening, communicating and changing
You’ll think about how listening and children’s participation can be central to early childhood policy, practice and provision. You’ll further reflect on what a listening culture means for young children within their families, settings they attend, and their wider community. You’ll also consider some of the complexities of commitment to children’s participation – in decision making about their lives and experiences – that arise from issues of power and control.
This module will provide you with insights into the many aspects of listening to children, and the value of a participatory approach to supporting their learning. It draws on examples and studies, both from the UK and abroad (for example, Australia, Italy and Scandinavia). By using such a wide range of resources, your perspective will broaden and your thinking will extend beyond situations that are more familiar.
You’ll compare practice that you observe with ideas that you study. You’ll reflect on the practice and experiences you see and how these might be adapted or changed.
You will learn
The module will enable you to:
- analyse and critically discuss concepts, theories, research and practice
- critically reflect on your own and others’ values and perspectives
- critically reflect on the role of the researcher and ethical considerations for the study of children and their families
- build and summarise arguments and arrive at supported conclusions.
This module includes specific learning outcomes to support the development of professional employability skills linked to careers in education, health and social care, and includes Personal Development Planning (PDP).
If you’re a practitioner, the learning journal you compile could contribute to a portfolio of evidence of learning, together with the module activities you complete, observations of practice, and your reflections on your role and provision.
The module will enable you to develop as creative, imaginative and reflective learner – a foundation for employment, and continuing academic study, in the field of early childhood. Transferable skills are applicable to a range of professional contexts.