Lärande för hållbar utveckling i förskolan: Kunskapsinnehåll, delaktighet och aktörskap kommunicerat i text.

Ärlemalm-Hagsér, E.
Nordisk Barnehageforskning 5(2), 1-21.


Focusing on the child’s opportunities to participate in activities in the daycare facility and to be heard, the purpose of this study is to examine how “education for sustainable development” is communicated and practiced in 18 Swedish daycare facilities.


Based on a certification system for sustainable development, the daycare facilities focus on equality, health and the environment. The study shows that the daycare facilities present a teaching practice for sustainable development that focuses on several different modes of logic. In one mode, children have the right to express their thoughts and ideas, and they have a say with regard to the daily activities in the daycare centre. In the other mode the child is expected to participate in, and contribute to, activities that are initiated by the staff. The study shows that the child who participates in activities is most visible in the facilities’ presentation, whereas the child who has a voice and is included in decisions regarding everyday activities is less visible.


In November 2009, 64 Swedish daycare facilities applied to the Swedish National Agency for Education to become certified within education for sustainable development (Skola för hållbar utveckling). Of the 64 applications, 18 were chosen to be used as empirical material in the study. So as to learn more about sustainable development, applications were required to include a description of the pedagogical content, focusing on children’s learning or participation. When analysing the data, focus was on the knowledge content of the applications with regard to how they describe pedagogical practices used in connection with sustainable development. Based on interpretation of data the study takes it point of departure in a number of concepts from Habermas’ theory on system, life-world and communication. The empirical material is interpreted in accordance with themes linked to two categories: participation and the child’s voice.


Ärlemalm-Hagsér, E. (2012). Lärande för hållbar utveckling i förskolan: Kunskapsinnehåll, delaktighet och aktörskap kommunicerat i text. Nordisk Barnehageforskning 5(2), 1-21.

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