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Worry becomes hope in education for sustainable development

Author(s): Lena Persson | Iann Lundegård | Per-Olof Wickman

Journal: Utbildning & Demokrati : Tidsskrift för Didaktik och Utbildningspolitik
ISSN 1102-6472

Volume: 20;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 123;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: action research | reflection | action competence | pluralism | worry | hope

Researchers in environmental education and education for sustainable development (ESD) have discussed in what ways young people’s experience in school may contribute to their action competence. This paper illustrates how an action research study centered on students’ reflections can contribute to a change in teaching that supports their action competence in education for sustainable development (ESD). The emphasis is on a pluralistic approach to ESD in which problems concerning sustainable development are considered as open-ended where students’ voices, action competence and decision-makingplay an important role. The researcher together with a teacher and her Year 9 class in a suburb of Stockholm carried out the action research study. The research corpus for the study was the students’ reflections in log books and interviews. Interviews were conducted with a smaller group of five students, and an interview was also made with the teacher at the end of the project to document her experiences. The case illustrates how students’ worries weremade salient through their reflections, which in turn made a change in teaching possible that transformed students’ worries into hope and supported their action competence. This way of working in the school practice may help teachers to think about ESD in new ways as well as in other areas of education.

Tango Jona
Tangokurs Rapperswil-Jona

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