Now showing 1 - 10 of 21
  • Publication
    Retomando los caminos hacia la participación: Aprendiendo de los niños, niñas y adolescentes trabajadores del café de Nicaragua
    (IIED-América Latina, 2008-11)
    En la mayoría de los estudios sobre participación infantil en los países del hemisferio norte ha predominado el enfoque de consulta con niños, niñas y adolescentes acerca del uso de servicios públicos. Muchos análisis se han dedicado a la descripción de diferentes modelos y modalidades utilizados para facilitar este tipo de participación. El modelo conocido como “Pathways to Participation” (Los Caminos hacia la Participación), propuesto por este autor (Shier 2001), es un ejemplo de este enfoque.
  • Publication
    Student Voice and Children’s Rights: Power, Empowerment, and “Protagonismo”
    (Springer Nature, 2019-05-29)
    All children have a right to speak out and be heard on all matters affecting their education. Adults have a duty not just to listen, but to give due weight to the views expressed. As participation is a human right, it does not have to be justified by reference to proven benefits. However, there is a growing body of research evidence to show that it indeed brings many and varied benefits to children and schools.
  • Publication
    Approaches to Youth Participation in Youth and Community Work Practice: a Critical Dialogue
    (Youth Workers' Association, 2020-08-31) ; ; ; ;
    Participation, and the inclusion of young people in decisions that affect them, is important to professional youth and community work practice (Smith 1983, 1988; Jeffs & Smith 1987; Irving, Maunders & Sherrington 1995; Harrison & Wise 2005; Ord 2007; Wood & Hine 2009; Batsleer & Davies 2010; Sapin 2013; Corney 2014a, 2014b). However, application of the concept is contested (Farthing, 2010, 2012) and, as Smith (1983) has warned, participation, while central to youth work, has not been well understood. Ord (2007) goes further to suggest that understanding what is meant by participation is crucial to good youth and community work practice.
  • Publication
    Children's Education Rights, Global Perspectives
    (Routledge, 2016-12-12) ; ;
    Education is recognised both as a right itself and an important means for the realisation of other human rights, ‘enhancing all rights and freedoms when it is guaranteed while jeopardizing them all when it is violated’ (Tomaševski, 2003, p. 7). Although it is not a right that is exclusive to children, it is enjoyed mainly by them and is crucial to their development and in many instances their survival and safety. Although similar provisions were laid down in the 1966 International Covenant on Social Economic and Cultural Rights (‘CESCR’), the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC, UN General Assembly, 1989), in articulating bespoke rights for those under the age of 18, provided a fresh platform that built on agreed global aspirations for education with a specific focus on children. What emerged was a unique and extended articulation of the rights that children have in relation to their education in not one but two lengthy Articles – Articles 28 and 29. These, along with a range of other provisions in the CRC, combine to form a series of interrelated entitlements that cannot be captured adequately by the singular term ‘the right to education’. In this chapter, ‘education rights’ has been chosen in place of the ‘right to education’ in an attempt to be true to the complex and multifaceted ways in which these provisions have evolved and been articulated in international human rights law and in particular in the CRC.
  • Publication
    Children's Rights in School: The perception of children in Nicaragua
    (Queen's University of Belfast. School of Education, 2016-07)
    For the many thousands of children in poor countries who drop out of school and so lose out on the life-chances that education might offer them, the notion of a ‘right to education’ has little meaning. Poverty and child labour are contributing factors, but for many children lack of respect for their rights in education is also a major problem. While current ‘whole-school approaches’ to children’s rights seem promising, failure to address underlying problems reduces their effectiveness. This thesis explores how children and adolescents in Nicaragua’s coffee sector perceive their human rights in school, providing insights that can contribute to the development of effective human-rights-based approaches to schooling, particularly in poor countries where the right to go to school must itself be claimed and defended. To come as close as possible to understanding how children themselves perceive their rights in school and the issues that concern them, the adult researcher worked in partnership with a team of child researchers in Nicaragua. The use of a distinctive methodology known as ‘Transformative Research by Children and Adolescents’ generated additional knowledge regarding the development of productive and ethical partnerships between child and adult researchers. The child researchers were facilitated in developing and carrying out a research project using qualitative interviews to address the above issues, including producing and publishing their own report; while the adult researcher gathered background information from parents, teachers and other adult informants. With the young researchers’ approval, their original data was subjected to a more thorough thematic analysis, which was compared with their own analysis. Four main themes emerged: (1) Developing positive human relations is funda¬mental for a rights-respecting school; (2) Students see some forms of behaviour management as rights violations, for example depriving them of playtime as punishment; (3) Lack of attention to the complex relationship(s) between rights and responsibilities has led to confusion and misunderstandings; (4) The child’s right to be heard was not an important issue for the children in this research, which raises questions for adult researchers inter¬ested in this topic. The main implications of the study are: highlighting the need for a rights-based approach to human relations in schools, particularly for dealing with behaviour issues; identifying the need for a more coherent and consensual pedagogy around children’s rights and responsibilities; and helping adult and child researchers develop more effective and productive partnerships.
  • Publication
    A change of Rhythm, Nicaraguan Style, in children and young people's participation: A simplified interpretation of the new international framework "A toolkit for monitoring and evaluating children’s participation" informed by the experience of the Nicaraguan pilot project 2011-2013
    (Save the Children, Nicaragua, 2016)
    Since the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child was adopted in 1989, we have known that all the world’s children have the right to participate; particularly, as defined in Article 12, the right to express their opinions and have these given due weight on decision-making on all aspects of their lives.
  • Publication
    Why the playworker’s mind-set is ideal for research with children: Child researchers investigate education rights in Nicaragua
    (Routledge, 2017-07-18)
    This chapter draws on my experience as a PhD researcher investigating children’s perceptions of human rights in school in Nicaragua’s coffee-growing zone to claim that, for a researcher such as myself coming from a playwork background, the ability to hold on to a playworker mind-set offers a distinct advantage when it comes to doing research in partnership with children. To develop this argument, I return to my playwork roots in England in the 1970s, and recount how from those roots grew the Article 31 Children’s Consultancy Scheme in the late 1990s, then how in 2001 I took these ideas with me to Nicaragua, where they gradually developed into the research methodology now known as “Transformative Research by Children and Adolescents” (TRCA). The TRCA approach is introduced, showing how its epistemology, values and methods reflect its playwork-inspired origins, and how it has subsequently developed through practice. I used TRCA as the main research methodology in my 2012-15 doctoral research project, where I obtained striking (and unexpected) findings on children’s perceptions about their right to play. The chapter concludes with a reflection on how my ability to hold on to a deeply-rooted playworker mind-set was a factor in making such findings possible. It also explores how this playworker mind-set may be advantageous for other researchers seeking to cut through the preconceptions and prescriptions of the adult professional world to engage more fully with children’s ways of thinking, and so get closer to a real understanding of children’s own experiences, perceptions and agendas.
  • Publication
    Article 31 Action Pack Children's Rights and Children's Play : Resources for Action to Implement Article 31 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child
    The right rest and leisure, to engage in play is usually missing from any discussions of children's rights. It is all too easy to fall into the trap of thinking only of those rights which are about protections; from poverty, from war and from abuse of every kind. This view will tend to see children as victims. The Article 31 Action Pack focuses on those articles which are about participation.
  • Publication
    Pathways to Participation Revisited: Learning from Nicaragua's Child Coffee Workers
    (Routledge, 2009-09-10)
    Work on children and young people’s participation in the UK (and other northern countries) has tended to focus on one specific aspect, namely consulting children and young people around their use of public services. Much analysis has focused on labelling different modes and models through which such participation may be facilitated. The author’s own ‘pathways to participation’ model is an example (Shier 2001; see also Kirby et al. 2003; Sinclair 2004).
  • Publication
    Adventure Playgrounds: an introduction
    (National Playing Fields Association, 1984)
    An Adventure Playground is an area fenced off and set aside for children. Within its boundaries children can play freely, in their own way, in their own time. But what is special about an Adventure Playground is that here (and increasingly in contemporary urban society, only here) children can build and shape the environment according to their own creative vision.