test Browse by Author Names Browse by Titles of Works Browse by Subjects of Works Browse by Issue Dates of Works

Advanced Search
& Collections
Issue Date   
Sign on to:   
Receive email
My Account
authorized users
Edit Profile   
About T-Space   

T-Space at The University of Toronto Libraries >
School of Graduate Studies - Theses >
Doctoral >

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/16766

Title: Learned Citizenship: Geographies of Education in Ontario Schools
Authors: Harris, Glenna
Advisor: Gilbert, Emily
Department: Geography
Keywords: citizenship
Issue Date: 19-Jan-2009
Abstract: Citizenship study of the past several decades has revealed citizenship as a multi-layered, multiply-scaled, and often exclusionary concept. Despite increasing and multi-disciplinary scholarly interest in the multi-faceted nature of citizenship as a political, social, and identity-oriented construct, it remains true that the majority of citizenship theory has developed in relation to adults, rendering children all but invisible to much citizenship discourse. Traditional citizenship theory has tended to position children as future adults and therefore as future citizens of the nation-state who prepare for citizenship through participation in public schools. Recent scholarship has also advocated children’s rights education as a key priority to help empower children as citizens in the present-day. This project investigates how citizenship in Ontario elementary schools, through curricular learning as well as non-curricular activities. I use multi-method research comprised of discursive analysis of provincial documents, semi-structured interviews with elementary school teachers in three school boards, and interactive activity sessions with elementary school students. These findings consider how provincially-scaled discourses persist through curriculum and policy which situate children as future adults and as responsible, competitive citizens in the present day. Teachers value such responsible citizenship as they negotiate the demands of delivering curriculum and maintaining functional classrooms, but concurrently contribute to local citizenship education through community knowledge and empowering student interaction. Children’s contributions reveal a willingness to associate citizenship with ‘good’ citizenship, law-abiding behaviour, and thus situate the school as a site where citizenship expectations are delineated. While these findings reveal the significant mediating role of local school teachers in delivering citizenship education as a supplement to standardized curriculum, only limited connections between citizenship and rights, and often between citizenship and the nation-state, are present overall. Children do figure as present-day citizens through their ability to perform responsible actions at any age, but this remains at best only tenuously connected to a citizenship of both rights and responsibilities.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/16766
Appears in Collections:Doctoral
Department of Geography - Doctoral theses

Files in This Item:

File Description SizeFormat
Harris_Glenna_C_200811_PhD_thesis.pdf8.53 MBAdobe PDF

Items in T-Space are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.