Volume 8 Issue 2 - September 1, 2014
“Kind Hands, Kind Face”: An analysis of how pre-school practitioners use children’s group behaviour to extend their social and emotional learning
Social and emotional competence relates to children’s ability to process and understand their experiences and their ability to utilise this throughout their lives. Rooted in theories of multiple intelligence, social and emotional competence is said to reach far beyond measures of attainment in understanding children’s wellbeing. This study aimed to explore how social and emotional learning (SEL) develops at pre-school stage, considering practitioner involvement in planned and naturally occurring learning. The triangulated qualitative methodologies involved observations, interviews, and focus groups with an identified focus on learning strategies used by the adults in the setting. Thus the intention was to research practitioner views of SEL, observe interventions used to develop SEL in children, and understand children’s experiences through observing them in social learning situations. The research observes a fundamentally consistent ethos encompassing expectations of staff about children, and concludes with an unexpected finding; that having processed such consistent messages, children themselves began to police their own environment.
Over the years, under the guise of fosterage and training, many girls have ended up as domestic labourers. Perceptions of child domestic labour are varied and often based on misconceptions about the practice and its effects. A common attitude is to deny that child domestic work is a form of child labour or employment at all; or to refuse to acknowledge that it is detrimental to the wellbeing of the children concerned. This paper compares some of the myths held about child domestic labour with the reality of a group of children who are involved in the practice in Ghana. The aim is to debunk some of the myths surrounding the phenomenon and possibly, influence the development of appropriate policies and interventions for child domestic workers.