Research dialogues about what matters in early childhood: Understandings of Sustainability

Jo Albin-Clark, Helena Kewley

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


In this paper, a tutor and early career teacher share their dialogues in planning a research project around the significance of sustainability education in early childhood. The student project posed the proposition: If education is to be relevant, transformative, and meaningful, it must seek to prepare children for a future beyond current human comprehension; one drastically altered by the effects of climate change and other ecological crises. Whilst Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) is considered instrumental in changing destructive sociocultural attitudes that have led to the current climate crisis, disparities between intergovernmental objectives, educational policy, and teachers’ perceptions of sustainability can engender barriers to its implementation. Moreover, contemporary pedagogical discourse within ESD is pervaded by the anthropocentric predisposition to consider children as saviours of the natural world. In our dialogue we discuss both our positions and the tensions in undertaking projects through posthuman lens and making sense of research practice that employs participatory, sensory ethnographic methodologies.


Conference Annual Conference for Research in Education (ACRE): Transitions and Transformations: Educational Research in Rapidly Changing Contexts
Abbreviated titleACRE
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


Dive into the research topics of 'Research dialogues about what matters in early childhood: Understandings of Sustainability'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this