By Judith Gill
Realizing Our position examines the best way youngsters view their international. It poses questions of citizenship and the way young ones come to a feeling of belonging of their neighborhood of kingdom, kin, school room, and college. The publication describes and analyzes the responses of greater than four hundred kids to a chain of open-ended questions. whereas the basic goal of the publication is to spot and describe facets of kid's pondering as they grapple with their constructing feel of being on the earth, there are glaring implications for the undertaking of citizenship schooling.
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Additional info for Knowing Our Place: Children Talking About Power, Identity and Citizenship
Bruce (12): And she’s like the leader and we have to follow. It’s like if you’re an adult you’ve got power. If you’re adult, like if you’re older, or being the oldest in the family, being old gives you more power. Darren (11): It’s just like the teacher’s the follower and everyone in the class … Anna (11): No, the leader. Darren (11): Yeah, the teacher’s the leader and everyone in the class has to follow or else. Like the 9–10-year-olds, the 11–12-year-olds generally construct power in benevolent, paternalistic ways.
And you can change those rules if you wanted to? Mandy (10): No. John (10): No, not definitely. If you suggested that and a lot of other people agreed with you, then you could change the rules. I: Okay, and is that a fair thing, do you think? Mandy (10): Yep. John (10): Yeah. I: Supposing only one person wanted to change the rules? Mandy (10): That way the rules would stay as they were. I: So you’ve got to have more people? John (10): Yeah. 18â•…â•‡ Knowing Our Place A power to veto class-determined rules and the teacher’s role as ‘leader’ in the class are seen as being fair by the older children.
Their construction of government still appears somewhat paternalistic, relying on ‘head guys’ realising that things are wrong and need changing. The concept of having a political representative who is supposed to represent your views and interests – indeed, the entire relationship between the individual and the state – does not seem to be clearly developed. In fact, their opinion of politicians, possibly fuelled by media coverage of the campaign for an imminent federal election, is rather jaundiced.