Working papers provide an opportunity for research centre members to present their current work in a collaborative and supportive environment in order to gain constructive feedback and refine journal papers in preparation for publication.

Number One: Layen and Hattingh (January 2017)

Title:  Students as Researchers: Developing and challenging cultural assumptions and perceptions

Abstract:  This study examines the disruption of cultural assumptions relating to forest pedagogy in early childhood education and care, as experienced by a group of undergraduate and postgraduate student researchers.  

The study is framed by cultural-historical theory, acknowledging that children’s learning and development takes place in social contexts and is shaped by cultural and societal values and practices.  Analysis of the data illuminates and challenges taken-for-granted understandings of approaches to forest experience and how this impacts the child as a competent and powerful social individual.  

The study found that the students’ assumptions about the child required reconsideration in the light of a culturally different approach to outdoor pedagogy.


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