Intergenerational collaborative drawing: A research method for researching with/about young children


Linda Knight
Queensland University of Technology

Felicity McArdle
Tamara Cumming
Charles Sturt University

Jane Bone
Liang Li
Corinna Peterken
Avis Ridgway
Monash University

This paper focuses on the methodological effectiveness of intergenerational collaborative drawing (ICD). A group of eight researchers trialled this particular approach to drawing, most of them for the first time. Each researcher drew with young children, peers and tertiary students, with drawings created over a period of six months. The eight researchers came together in a ‘community of scholars’ approach to this project because of two shared interests: (i) issues of social justice, access and equity; and (ii) arts-based education research methods. The researchers were curious how ICD might methodically support their respective research processes.

As knowledge and theory about young children becomes more complex, researchers need responsive methodological tools to ask new questions and conduct rigorous, ethical research. This partial account describes how drawing together might perform methodologically. The data reported here draws from the detailed field notes, drawings and reflections of the researchers. Conclusions arise from the analysis of these reflections, with the authors suggesting ways in which ICD might benefit research with young children.

Australasian Journal of Early Childhood—Volume 40 No 4 December 2015

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