Original Research

Imagination, Waldorf, and critical literacies: Possibilities for transformative education in mainstream schools

Monica Shank
Reading & Writing | Vol 7, No 2 | a99 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/rw.v7i2.99 | © 2016 Monica Shank | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 13 September 2015 | Published: 15 July 2016

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Monica Shank, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE), University of Toronto, Canada

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In the face of transmission-oriented national curricula, this study explores possibilities for claiming space for imagination, as ‘the most powerful and energetic of learning tools’ (Egan 1986), in early childhood education in mainstream Kenyan schools. Drawing from Egan’s work on imagination and Cummins’ Nested Pedagogical Orientations framework, this study interrogates the indispensable role of imagination in transformative education, as well as its utility in the ‘transmission’ of the government curriculum. This study draws insights from an initiative integrating imaginative, Waldorf-inspired pedagogies into mainstream pre-primary and early primary classrooms to explore how imagination-based pedagogies, including storytelling, creative play, poems and verses, drawing and painting, can support the development of critical literacies in young children.


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