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Poster Open Access

Mattering the situated and social nature of schoolyard play

Michelle Bergin; Maria Prellwitz; Margareta Lilja; Bryan Boyle

This research was shared at the inaugural World Occupational Science Conference, 2022 as a poster presentation and also invited participants to further engage with the research, thinking with theory on schoolyards as collective occupations. 

An initial analysis of an inquiry into children’s schoolyard play,considers schoolyard breaktime as collective occupations.Informed by post-qualitative approaches,this inquiry enacts an"agential cut“ diffracting data from three qualitative research studies exploring schoolyard play with Occupational Science conceptualizations of situated and collective occupations. The schoolyard is(re)presented as significant in the social lives of children,and as a space of inequality and exclusion. Researchers from diverse disciplines,have applied spatial and sociological theories,to understand issues of identity,agency,power,and belonging during interactions within the schoolyard. The role of occupations in these shared,social processes has received less attention.Situated materials, discourses and embodied doings intra-acting in a momentary cut are presented alongside a mattering of collective doing. Finding"the play”using post qualitative approaches can generate knowledges of the always becoming nature and differences entangled in collective doing in schoolyards. (In)forming practices recognises that focusing on what matters risks also excluding other kinds of mattering.


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