CHAPTER 3 CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK
In this chapter, I outline the theories related to the core concepts of my research topic. The information I present in the conceptual framework will direct my study and guide my interpretation of data. The concepts based on my theoretical framework include values, values education, children as citizens in a democracy and their interrelatedness. I will first explain these concepts before outlining the theories related to my study.
The concept of “values” is generally about emphasising on the civic and moral development of citizens (Halstead & Taylor, 1996). Civic and moral values are in some instances complex in the sense that some writers have focused on one aspect while ignoring the other, while some researchers view these concepts as serving the same purpose. Barber (1998), for example, focused exclusively on civic responsibility and avoided the area of morality. However, civic and moral values can also be seen as integrated because they both focus on the moral being of learners by assisting them to acquire values that can guide them to make appropriate choices in life (DOE, 2006).
The literature also explains values as everything from eternal ideas to behavioural actions (Rokeach, 1966). In my study, teachers are regarded as professionals who are expected to convey these values to learners formally through the implementation of values education. The concept of values education will be explained below.
Robb (1998) defines values education as an activity whereby people are educated about aspects that determine their behaviour. This activity can take place formally and informally. Values education is provided to all people by those who are more experienced, adults as well as inexperienced citizens such as children, not only in the knowledge of values but also in their application of values in their everyday lives. These experienced people include parents, the larger community and teachers (Robb, 1998).
The South Africa Education system, which is grounded on the country’s Constitution, views learners as citizens who can secure a new democracy (Joubert, 2009). Learners’ voices should therefore be heard as far as political, civic and governmental affairs are concerned (Joubert, 2009). Therefore, a holistic approach to the teaching of values/character education is recommended, based upon the assumption that everything that goes on in and around these learners affects their values or character (Lickona, 1993).
Values can be taught through a dedicated curriculum. That is why my study is situated in the classroom, where teachers teach learners values. There are different definitions of the term “curriculum”. Tanner and Tanner (1975) define curriculum as the planned official document that guides the teaching and learning processes for the personal growth and development of learners. According to Pratt (1980), a curriculum is an official written document that describes the teaching and learning activities.
In a broader definition, Hass (1987) states that a curriculum includes all the experiences that learners have in a programme of education with the purpose of achieving goals and objective in their education. In addition, in a formalised curriculum, students experience an unwritten curriculum characterised by informality and lack of planning. This curriculum is referred to as a “hidden curriculum” that includes values, intergroup relations and socialisation processes (Dreeben, 1968). Each student has a different parental background and at school, he or she encounters norms that will prepare him or her for involvement in public spheres. These norms are defined as independence, achievement and universalism (Dreeben, 1968).
As values education is said not to be explicit in the national curriculum for South African schools, it can therefore be referred to as being part of a hidden curriculum; it is learned alongside the planned curriculum (Jackson, 1988). While the hidden curriculum is taught through a number of subjects, my study will focus on Life Skills as a vehicle for the teaching of values and investigate whether the values taught by teachers are implicit or explicit in the curriculum.
CHILDREN AS FULL CITIZENS IN A DEMOCRACY
Curriculum 2005 (DOE, 2007) aimed to achieve a democratic and internationally competitive country with citizens who are creative and critical. Learners ought, therefore, to be equipped with skills to participate fully in society. It was drawn up on the basis of research (commissioned by the Department of Education) that explored the way educators, learners and parents think and talk about values in education and served as an important resource for the implementation of the new national curriculum, which included values and citizenship. It was realised that values are an important component of citizenship and citizenship education in the global and South African context (Joubert, 2009).
As I explained in chapter two, I will examine theories relevant to this study: The theories in question are Dewey’s theory of building a learning community, Kohlberg’s theory of moral development, Gilligan’s theory of moral development, the transforming society theory by McNaughton and Waghid’s expansion of compassion and imaginative action.
DEWEY’S THEORY OF “BUILDING A LEARNING COMMUNITY”
Being a philosophical pragmatist, Dewey (1859-1952) called for a democratic, child-centred and social-reform-oriented education in the USA (Colvaleski, 1994):
Dewey also emphasised that schools had the responsibility to train good citizens for a democratic community; a nation where school and society are aligned in terms of aims and practices (Dewey in Handlin, 1959:23; Dewey in Mooney, 2001: 1–19; Dewey in Palmer, 2001: 179–181).
Dewey argued that education and democracy are interrelated and that education should be used for progressive social change (McNaughton & Williams, 2004). He insisted that the child’s own experiences must form the basis for the curriculum and not the reutilisation, memorisation and recitation of the classical curriculum.
Dewey established a laboratory school at the University of Chicago (USA) where the development of a democratic social community in the school was a core business, with a commitment to participatory democracy. In a learning community, the goal was to advance the collective knowledge and to support the growth of the individual knowledge of members of that learning community (Scardamelia & Bereiter, 1994).
As the world becomes more complex, learners find themselves unprepared for both personal and social challenges. It is therefore important to direct their learning towards working with other people, including their peers, listening to others and developing ways of dealing with difficult issues and problems that they face (US DOL, 1991). My view is that through values education, young children in the foundation phase should be assisted to achieve this goal. Dewey believes that people learn best by a knowledge construction approach, not by assimilating what they are told.
According to Dewey, communication is important in building a democratic community of learners’. Through communication, learning is created and shared, and through communication, it is possible to understand how others think about and understand the world to build a shared understanding of what is valued and valuable for a group.
Dewey’s theory of building a learning community was extended by Alexander (2002) through his concept of “citizenship” schools. This concept provides a whole school and lifelong learning approach where young children are treated as citizens in a democratic learning community. Children are equipped with more power over their lives by valuing their own abilities and learning to participate effectively in a collective decision-making process (Alexander, 2000). This concept is echoed by the South African Manifesto on Education, Democracy and Values, which also states, “Democracy is a societal means to engage critically with itself” (DOE, 2001: 3).
The National Curriculum Statement Grades R–12 serves the purposes of equipping learners, irrespective of their socio-economic background, race, gender, physical ability or intellectual ability, with the knowledge, skills and values necessary for self-fulfilment, and meaningful participation in society as citizens of a free country (DBE, 2011: 4).
Values education in my study therefore comes to the fore, since elements of citizenship schools include ethos, decision making and a learning of culture that is based on democracy (Alexander, 2002). Alexander emphasised active citizenship as an important aspect of children’s participation in society.
A study in the United Kingdom conducted in Jewish primary schools, revealed that the emphasis of citizenship education was on teaching learners to respect other people as a challenge to racism (Joubert, 2007). This finding is significant to my study, since racism occurred in the past and might still be experienced in South African society, which might be a result of distrust between young people (Scholtz, 2005).
1.2 PROBLEM STATEMENT
1.3 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1.4 RATIONALE .
1.5 DEFINITION OF TERMINOLOGY
1.6 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
1.7 CASE STUDY
1.9 DATA COLLECTION
1.10 ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS
1.11 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
1.12 OUTLINE OF CHAPTERS .
2.2 SIGNIFICANCE OF VALUES EDUCATION
2.3 VALUES AND THE SOUTH AFRICAN INDIGENOUS COMMUNITIES
2.4 POLICY DOCUMENTS AND VALUES
2.5 VALUES, CULTURE AND LANGUAGE
2.6 REASONS WHY VALUES EDUCATION SHOULD BE IMPLEMENTED IN SCHOOLS
2.7 VALUES EDUCATION IN THE AGE OF ENLIGHTENMENT
2.8 VALUES EDUCATION IN THE INDIGENOUS AFRICAN CONTEXT
2.9 VALUES EDUCATION IN THE SIXTIES AND THE SEVENTIES
2.10 VALUES EDUCATION IN THE NINETIES
2.11 TEACHERS’ VIEWS OF VALUES EDUCATION
2.12 VALUES EDUCATION AND THE CURRICULUM
2.13 VOICES AGAINST POLICIES AS TRANSFORMATIVE TOOLS IN A NONRACIAL SOCIETY.
2.14 LIFE SKILLS AS A SUBJECT IN THE SOUTH AFRICAN NATIONAL CURRICULUM
2.15 THE HOME AS A PRIMARY SOURCE OF VALUES EDUCATION
3.3 VALUES EDUCATION
3.4 CURRICULUM .
3.5 CHILDREN AS FULL CITIZENS IN A DEMOCRACY
3.6 DEWEY’S THEORY OF “BUILDING A LEARNING COMMUNITY”
3.7 KOHLBERG’S THEORY OF MORAL DEVELOPMENT
3.8 SUMMARY OF KOHLBERG’S STAGES OF MORAL DEVELOPMENT
3.9 CAROL GILLIGAN’S THEORY OF MORAL DEVELOPMENT
3.10 MCNAUGHTON’S TRANSFORMING SOCIETY THEORY
3.11 WAGHID’S EXPANSION OF “COMPASSION AND IMAGINATIVE ACTION”
3.12 INTERRELATEDNESS OF VALUES EDUCATION CONCEPTS
3.13 SUMMARY OF THEORIES APPLIED IN MY STUDY
4.2 RESEARCH PARADIGM
4.3 RESEARCH METHOD
4.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
4.5 CASE STUDY
4.6 SAMPLING PROCEDURE AND SITE SELECTION
4.7 ASSUMPTION OF THE STUDY
4.8 RESEARCH PROCES
4.9 DATA COLLECTION .
4.10 FIELD NOTES
4.11 RESEARCH QUALITY PRINCIPLES
4.12 ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS
4.13 DATA ANALYSIS
5.2 DESCRIPTION OF CASES .
5.3 PRESENTATION OF DATA
5.4 THEMATIC ANALYSES OF TEACHERS’ PERSPECTIVES OF VALUES EDUCATION
5.5 REPORT OF FINDINGS BASED ON THEMES IDENTIFIED
6.2 COMPARISON OF FINDINGS WITH THE LITERATURE .
6.3 FINDINGS ON THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN IDEALS AND REALITY .
6.4 SILENCES IN THE RESEARCH DATA .
6.5 ANSWERS TO THE RESEARCH QUESTIONS .
6.6 RECOMMENDATIONS AND DIRECTIONS FOR FUTURE RESEARCH
6.7 FURTHER STUDIES AND RESEARCH
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