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Arts based educational research in the early years

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journal contribution
posted on 26.10.2016, 01:39 by Barton, Georgina
This paper will explore arts-based educational research (ABER) as an effective and appropriate research method in the early years. It has been noted that the arts play an increasingly important role in the development of the child (Boone, 2008; Twigg, 2011a, 2011b; Twigg & Garvis, 2010; Wright, 2012). In fact McArdle and Wright (2014) call the arts children's first literacies. Research with young children can often be difficult given that they are often still developing their skills in communicating through language, whether oral or written. Other modes such as visual image through drawing, or audio through song, are innate skills that young children can use to communicate effectively. This paper will report on a number of projects that have used arts-based educational research methods with young children. It shows how much research, in the past, has often treated children as inferior participants, or in need of adult confirmation, whereas arts-based methods can be powerful platforms for research with children that gives children more of a voice in the research process.

International Research in Early Childhood Education, vol. 6, no. 1, p. 62-78