Norwegian teacher education is obliged to provide future teachers with analytical tools and appropriate practices that enable them to help children and young adults to reflect on issues linked to nature and culture. This includes examining the use and abuse of resources and discussing ecological responsibility, as well as observing and exemplifying how human activity has influenced natural areas so students can learn to practice and appreciate a sustainable relationship with nature.
Children’s and young adult (YA) literature and culture offer significant areas for research into representations of interspecies relations as well as areas that help develop a conception of or feeling for nature. Nature as presented to children and young adults in literary texts, images, films, games, apps, and in outdoor and educational activities likely influences the way young people understand and cope with actual environmental challenges and concerns in their immediate surroundings.
The main objectives of this NaChiLitCul project are to map out and analyse how interspecies relations and communication are represented in children’s and YA literature and culture and how we may foster interspecies awareness through ecocritical dialogues in literature studies and outdoor practices in Norwegian teacher education.
The project consists of four complementary work packages.WP1 aims at coordinating the theoretical framing of the project, and at creating a collective NaChiLitCul identity. WP2 aims at investigating how techne as the interface between humans and nature is constructed in children’s and YA literature and culture. WP3 aims at developing and exploring ecocritical literature circles as a method to further interspecies awareness in national teacher education programs. WP4 aims at developing and exploring the Lesson Study Model to further interspecies awareness in national teacher education programmes on outdoor practices.