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ERIC Number: EJ1204901
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2019
Pages: 18
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0966-9760
Why Nurturing Curiosity Is an Ethical Endeavour: Exploring Practitioners' Reflections on the Importance of Curiosity
Menning, Soern Finn
International Journal of Early Years Education, v27 n1 p34-51 2019
Several authors have argued that early childhood education and care (ECEC) is essentially an ethical practice based on certain values and conceptions about the purpose of education. Is this also the case for educational practices surrounding the highly valued notion of curiosity? While psychological approaches portray it as neutral, this article aims to explore curiosity's normative connotations. To do so, an ethnographically informed approach and video-stimulated recall focus-group interviews have been used to gather Norwegian ECEC practitioners' reflections on the importance of curiosity. The reflections have been analysed using the concept of ethical rationalities and can be grouped into four approaches to valuing curiosity: the relational approach, the virtue approach, the consequentialist approach and the essentialist approach. The analysis suggests that different practices for nurturing curiosity are constrained and others are enabled, depending on the preferred ethical rationality. To prevent the nurturing of curiosity from being based on an assumed and restricted range of theoretical and ethical perspectives, it is necessary to invite practitioners' reflections on values associated with curiosity.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 530 Walnut Street Suite 850, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Tel: 215-625-8900; Fax: 215-207-0050; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Early Childhood Education; Preschool Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Norway