Små barns sociala liv på vilan: Om deltagande och ordningsskapande i förskolan.

Grunditz, S.
Ph.d.-afhandling. Uppsala universitet, Uppsala.


This study examines how children aged 1-3 years create different forms of participation at naptime at a daycare centre (förskola) in Sweden. The study focusses on how children practice their social and cultural understandings of naptime, and how the children establish different local orders which form their friendship cultures and routines in connection with naptime. Focus is particularly on how young children use bodily actions and different semiotic resources (i.e. methods of communication using voice, body language or aids) when they take active part in this daycare-centre routine.


Overall the study shows the sophisticated ways in which children use their knowledge about cultural and institutional routines to create space for play and interaction with friends and early childhood educators. The study shows how naptime at a daycare centre not only involves sleep, but also includes a space in which young children are active agents in maintaining, creating, re-establishing and challenging the order of naptime through interaction with each other and the early childhood educators. The child is thereby active in the interaction and the creation of order in connection with its social life at the daycare centre. Through participating in interaction during naptime, the child learns to find its place in

the group, and it also discovers what it takes to change the activity. Within the institutional routine considered as naptime, the children are able to create time and space for their own friendship cultures through bodily actions and use of semiotic resources, despite their, at times, limited verbal language.

In this way, young children are able to constitute their own social life within the frameworks of naptime, which is often through adapting to the institutional orders and the orders structured by adults. An example of this is how, by making eye-contact with the early childhood educator, a child receives permission to leave the room, despite the fact that it is naptime.


This study is an ethnographic field study with special focus on data collection through video footage. The study was conducted at a daycare centre (förskoleavdelning) in Sweden. The data was collected through passive observation of participants as well as 33 hours of video material. The study was preceded with a pilot study in 2007 to provide an overview of everyday life at the daycare centre. The main study was conducted from August to October 2011, and the children's activities during naptime were monitored for one-four days a week. A total of 23 children and six early childhood educators participated in the study. The analysis has an ethnomethodological and a conversation analytical perspective in order to explore and analyse the organisation of local orders and the children's participation in these. This is with special focus on the children's bodily expression in interactions with the spatial and material layout of the room.


Grunditz, S. (2013). Små barns sociala liv på vilan: Om deltagande och ordningsskapande i förskolan. Ph.d.-afhandling. Uppsala universitet, Uppsala.

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