We got another chance to showcase the wonderful work that is happening at Lapage Primary School in Bradford in a recent Canterbury Christ Church University/University of Kent research report. The report sought to answer the question, “What are young children’s perceptions, experiences and preferences of charity?”. One of the central ideas behind this report is that early education is “fundamental in securing individuals’ long term social and political orientations” thus a perfect time to introduce discussion around philanthropy.
The research team spoke to 150 children aged 4 – 8 and found that children saw charity as a range of “pro-social behaviours” – both donating money and helping others. The report looks at how parents and carers can support their children in becoming more critically engaged in philanthropic behaviours and active in decisions about which charity they support. This is a key area for educators and caregivers alike – how can young children be supported to decide which charities they want to support and to engage with the range of ways that they can make a difference and not just in the traditional model of ‘transactional giving’. It’s clear from the report that even the youngest children are willing and able to be active stakeholders in this area and that the national curriculum lends itself wonderfully to embedding debate and discussion around charity from a very young age.
The full report including the case study on how Lapage’s year one children were engaged in the full life cycle of charitable giving can be found on our website (Link to report)