The open online webinar will be titled "Advancing small children’s voice and agency through research collaboration and innovation studies". It is based on the work of Mhairi Beaton, Tuija Turunen, Anne Burke, Pigga Keskitalo, Hanna Helander, Paula Ayliffe, Kyrstie Stubbs, Henna Aikio, Satu Pieski, Sirkka Sanila, Angela Rose, Erin Power, Jessica Williams and Jennifer Skanes.

Webinar abstract

This webinar is based on the processes and findings of the phase one of the ADVOST project (Socially Innovative Interventions to Foster and to Advance Young Children’s Inclusion and Agency in society through Voice and Story). It included case studies conducted in the United Kingdom, Finland and Canada. All three case studies explored how the promotion of children’s voices and agency might support social cohesion and wellbeing. The ADVOST project sought to provide a deeper understanding of how teachers were using pedagogical approaches to facilitate the voices and agency of all young children in ways that valued and honored the cultural diversity they bring to the classroom.The set project phases needed some modification because the schedule start of the project coincided with the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. Not all the three case studies could be implemented in the original planned format so the research design required adaptations. The pandemic effected the research ethics and added some complications, such as children’s interviews were conducted online despite meeting them face-to-face.

The three case studies produced innovation preliminary findings which will be presented in a webinar. Finnish case study concerns Sámi language distance education and teachers and pupils working with traditional storytelling, outdoor education and playful learning. In the UK case study, the researchers worked with early years practitioners and their pupils to collaboratively explore how student voice might be utilised as a pedagogical tool to improve learning. The Canadian case study explored how arts – based pedagogies informed teaching approaches in innovative ways using digital media to enhance children’s storytelling and voices.

The webinar will be held in  Teams. The webinar is open for all to participate, and it will be recorded.

The project is part of activities of UArctic Thematic Network on Teacher Education.

The project partners are University of Lapland, Finland (project leader), Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada and Leeds Beckett University, UK.