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Title: 'Come, let us Live with our Children': Undōkai, the Children's Play Festival at a Froebelian Kindergarten in Japan, 1889 - 2015
Contributor(s): Nishida, Yukiyo  (editor); Abe, Fusa (editor)
Publication Date: 2016
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Field of Research (FoR) 2008: 130102 Early Childhood Education (excl. Maori)
139999 Education not elsewhere classified
130299 Curriculum and Pedagogy not elsewhere classified
Field of Research (FoR) 2020: 390302 Early childhood education
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2008: 970113 Expanding Knowledge in Education
939999 Education and Training not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2020: 280109 Expanding knowledge in education
280114 Expanding knowledge in Indigenous studies
Abstract: Undōkai translates to 'sports day festival' or 'athletic festival' in Japanese, and functions as a display of athletic elements and an opportunity for outdoor play. It was developed in the mid-to-late nineteenth century as a result of social, cultural, religious and educational factors and it has become an most important school event from kindergarten to secondary education. Specifically, undōkai in early childhood education is regarded as a unique style of outdoor play which includes play, games, singing, dancing and athletic activities. Despite its sometimes teacher-centred orientation, the undōkai of today is similar to the 'play-festival' (Spielfest) devised by Friedrich Froebel for use with young children. There have been debates in recent decades about whether undōkai is good for young children. This chapter examines the development of one such child-centred undōkai as a children's play festival at a Froebelian kindergarten in Japan. The questions addressed include: What are the Froebelian educators' motivations for developing undōkai? What does the child-centred undōkai look like? And, finally, what was the process for creating the child-centred undōkai? The answers to these questions are drawn from early education contexts across time and cultures.
Publication Type: Book Chapter
Source of Publication: Kindergarten Narratives on Froebelian Education: Transnational Investigations, p. 151-166
Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
Place of Publication: London, England
ISBN: 9781474254434
HERDC Category Description: B1 Chapter in a Scholarly Book
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Editor: Editor(s): Helen May, Kristen Nawrotzki, Larry Prochner
Appears in Collections:Book Chapter
School of Education

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