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Participation resource guide

Participation in programme areas


Early childhood development

Alderson, Priscilla, Young Children’s Rights: Exploring beliefs, attitudes, principles and practice, Jessica Kingsley Publishers and Save the Children, ISBN-10: 1-8530 2-880-0, London, 2000.
This publication links younger children’s rights to the principles of the Convention on the Rights of the Child and examines how the CRC applies to children from birth to 8 years of age. It discusses ways to find a balance between young children’s rights to protection, provision and to participation. It considers the difficulties adults may be facing in communicating with children and offers practical
suggestions on how these can be overcome.

Arnold, Caroline, Sheridan Bartlett, Joanna Hill, Chandrika Khatiwada, et al., Bringing Up Children in a Changing World: Who’s right? Whose rights? Conversations with families in Nepal, Save the Children Norway, UK and US, Kathmandu, 2000.
This book is based on a study on early childhood development in four villages in Nepal. Based on conversations with families, it starts from what families already know about raising children and suggests a combination of preserving local and traditional practices and introducing new knowledge and behaviours to help families and children adapt to their changing environment. The document calls for more comprehensive and synergistic approaches to early child care and development, including health, nutrition, cognitive and psychological development within a rights framework.
Email: himalfo@savechildren.org.np

Bernard van Leer Foundation, ‘Young Children’s Participation: Rhetoric or growing reality?’ in Early Childhood Matters 103, ISSN: 1387-9553, The Hague, 2004.
This issue of the newsletter looks at the participation of younger children and how it can be practised and measured. It gives guidelines for creating an environment where children will be taken seriously. It includes an overview of current thinking at an international level on how young children can play an effective role in programming and in decisions that affect their lives.

Clark, Alison, Anne Trine Kjørholt and Peter Moss, Beyond Listening: Children’s perspectives on early childhood services, Policy Press, ISBN 186 134 6123, Bristol, UK, 2005.
This book takes a critical look at how listening to younger children in early childhood services is understood and practised. It is based on examples of work in six countries by researchers and practitioners who study younger children’s participation.

Clark, Alison and Peter Moss, Listening to Young Children: The Mosaic Approach, National Children’s Bureau, ISBN 1 900990 62 8, UK, 2001.
Developed with 3- to 4-year-old children in an early childhood institution, this book outlines the Mosaic Approach to listening to young children’s perspectives on their daily lives. Using many case studies and examples, it argues for practical services that are responsive to children’s voices and their competencies. This book can be a useful tool for working with older children and for children
with communication difficulties.

Dickens, M., Starting with Choice: Inclusive strategies for consulting young children, Save the Children UK, ISBN 1-8-84187-085-4 9, 2004.
This manual provides clear, practical guidance on consulting young children and includes a range of techniques to help them express their views and make choices. It also looks at when consultation can be effective and how to train and support staff to gain the skills they need.

Lansdown, Gerison, Can You Hear Me? The right of young children to participate in decisions affecting them, Bernard van Leer Foundation, The Hague, 2005.
This paper argues that there is an urgent need to explore the active participation of children younger than 8 in decisions that affect them. It offers suggestions on how this can be achieved.

Lansdown, Gerison, The Evolving Capacities of the Child, Save the Children and UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre, Florence, 2005.
This report draws on Article 5 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which states that children should receive guidance ‘in a manner consistent with the evolving capacities of the child’. The report examines the practical and programmatic implications of this principle and what it means for parenting and cultural traditions.

Miller, Judy, Never Too Young: How young people can take responsibility and make decisions, Save the Children UK, ISBN 184 187 077, London, 2003.
This handbook focuses on younger children and describes how they can take responsibilities and make decisions.

Treseder, Phil and Anne Crowley, Taking the Initiative: Promoting young people’s participation in decision-making in Wales, Save the Children UK, London, 2001.
This practical handbook shows how children younger than 8 can participate, make decisions and take responsibility for their actions. It provides practitioners with information on why participation works and includes tried and tested techniques for involving children in the decisions that affect them.

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