Accessing children's voices and experiences

Kellett, Mary (2011). Accessing children's voices and experiences. In: Moyles, Janet; Georgeson, Jan and Payler, Jane eds. Beginning Teaching Beginning Learning In Early Years and Primary Education, Volume 4th ed. Maidenhead: Open University Press, pp. 226–238.



The chapter starts with a brief overview of policy shifts towards meaningful participation and children’s voice over the last decade drawing on a children’s rights framework and situating this in Every Child Matters legislation. Content discusses ways in which this can be undertaken with children aged 3-11 and how PSHCE can be used as a vehicle to achieve this. A wide ranging spectrum of activity is drawn on from first steps such as facilitating circle time activities to cultivating meaningful student councils and empowering children as researchers. The chapter is divided into two age groups broadly along key stage lines, 3-7 and 8-11, and draws on examples that illustrate diversity and inclusion. Challenging concepts are examined such as adult-child power relations, distributed leadership and accessing voice for the silent minorities.

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