Individuella utvecklingsplaner för yngre barn i Sverige: Ett kritiskt ämnesdidaktiskt perspektiv.

Roth, A.-C.V. og Månsson
Nordisk Barnehageforskning 1 (1) S. 25-39.


The purpose of this study is to analyse the objectives and content of individual development plans (IDP) at daycare centres (children under six years) and pre-school classes (six year-olds). The study examines how the content is chosen and put together in development plans for children at daycare centres and in preschool classes; how the content is transformed between state and individual; and how the content is constructed in relation to place, age, gender and ethnicity.


This study examines curricula and divides these into three types, depending on the children involved:
The socially strong children with Swedish parents living in 'homogeneous (wealthy) neighbourhoods’ receive curricula with academic content.
With regard to children, who are socially disadvantaged and from less homogeneous urban areas with greater social diversity, the primary content of curricula will be Swedish and focus on developing the children socially.
The primary focus for children from the countryside will be on language development.
The study identifies three tracks or normalisations (dependent on place and institution):
1) The curricula for socially strong children from a relatively homogeneous urban area focused on academic subjects; typically subjects such as Swedish, mathematics, sports and health/motor skills as well as pictures and music. 2) The curricula for socially disadvantaged multicultural children from a relatively heterogeneous urban area focused on Swedish and on social development. The objective of social development is self knowledge, empathy, responsibility and cooperation. Adjustments are on the basis of gender and age. 3) The curricula for monocultural children from the countryside focused on adjusting primary needs. There is a general tendency that greater effort is made to regulate the social behaviour of girls in kindergarten, whereas boys are exposed to increased social regulation in pre-school classes. The institutional context seems to be of greater influence than the national curriculum. Swedish as a subject is taught in all districts and municipalities, whereas the multicultural content is completely non-existent. A monolingual culture is prevalent. What is described as normalities in the development plans give rise to the question of whether the plans limit rather than expand the possibilities for children to become socially active. The authors question whether these standardised development plans can help to create critical and creative citizens.


The data collection is based on development plans and school materials.


Roth, A.-C.V. og Månsson, A. (2008). Individuella utvecklingsplaner för yngre barn i Sverige: Ett kritiskt ämnesdidaktiskt perspektiv: Nordisk Barnehageforskning 1 (1) S. 25-39.

Financed by

The study is funded by the Swedish National Agency for Education.