RELIGIOUS DIVERSITY IN KINDERGARTENS IN VIENNA
Helena Stockinger, 17.11.2014
Outline
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Preface
Religous landscape in Austria and Vienna
Studies on religious diversity on young children
Research question
Research design
• Methods
• Selection of kindergartens
• First results
• Handling of religious diversity in kindergartens
• Conversations of children about religious diversity
Introduction
• Diverse contexts in Europe
• Importance of the institution kindergarten
• “The preparation of the child for responsible life in
a free society, in the spirit of understanding,
peace, tolerance, equality of sexes, and friendship
among all peoples, ethnic, national and religious
groups and persons of indigenous origin” (Article
29, Convention on the Rights of the Child)
AUSTRIA
VIENNA
Roman Catholic: 73.7 % / 62.5%
Roman Catholic: 49.2 % / 37.1
Protestant: 4.7 % / 3.7 %
Protestant: 4.7 %
Islamic: 4.2 %/ 6.8 %
Islamic: 7.8 % / 12.5 %
Orthodox: 2.2 % / 5.8 %
Orthodox: 5.8 %
no religious denomination: 12 %
no religious denomination: 25.6 %
not specified: 2 %
not specified: 4.2 %
other religious denominations: <1 % other religious denominations: <1 %
Population Census 2001 / Estimate 2012, 2013
Studies about religious diversity in
kindergartens in Germany
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Hoffmann, Eva: Interreligiöses Lernen im Kindergarten?
Eine empirische Studie zum Umgang mit religiöser Vielfalt
in Diskussionen mit Kindern zum Thema Tod. Berlin: LIT
2009.
•
Edelbrock, Anke/Schweitzer, Friedrich/Biesinger, Albert
(Hg.): Wie viele Götter sind im Himmel? Religiöse
Differenzwahrnehmung im Kindesalter. Interreligiöse und
interkulturelle Bildung im Kindesalter Band 1. MünsterNew York-München-Berlin: Waxmann 2010.
Research question
How is religious diversity in kindergartens
handled and how do young children talk about
religious diversity?
Research design
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Ethnographic approach
Grounded Theory (Strauss/Corbin 1996; Corbin/Strauss 2008)
Thematic Coding (Flick 2007)
Transcription of all the data
Coding and memoing
Methods of the research
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Observation during one school year
Group discussion with the children
Group discussion with the pedagogues
Interviews with the heads of the
kindergartens
Selection of the two kindergartens
• Same district in Vienna
• Children of all religious denomination are
allowed to visit the kindergarten
• Heads of the kindergartens assume religious
diversity as positive
• Respect for other religions in the concept
• Religion is a factor in the kindergarten
• A Catholic and an Islamic kindergarten
Religious denominations in the 2 kindergartens
Catholic kindergarten
Islamic kindergarten
Catholics: 45.7 %
Catholics: 8.1 %
Muslims: 17.4 %
Muslims: 91.9 %
No religious denomination: 17.4 %
Orthodox: 13.1 %
Hindu: 2.2 %
Sikhs: 2.2 %
First findings
• Tendencies concerning religious diversity
in kindergartens
• Tendencies concerning the conversation
of children about religious diversity
Conceptual considerations of religion and
religious diversity in the kindergartens
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Religion as part of the daily routine
Religion as additional, voluntary service
Concepts are fragmentary
No enforcement to take part in religious
activities
Elements of religion and religious diversity in
the kindergarten
• Celebrations
• Prayers
• Conspicuity of religion in the
kindergarten
• Religious activities
Celebrations
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Religious celebrations of the majority religion
Religious celebrations of the non majority religion
Celebrations with no religious background
Secularised celebrations of religious origin
Providing information about religious celebrations
Prayers
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Prayers of the majority religion
No prayers of the non majority relgion
Unified prayers
Secular slogan instead of a prayer
Communication about religious diversity in
the kindergartens
• Some efforts to broach the issue of religious
diversity
• Avoidance of communication about religious
diversity
• Reasons for the avoidance:
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to avoid challenges and conflicts
to follow the tradition
missing knowledge
equality for all the children
religion as teaching values
Summary of religious diversity in the
kindergartens
• Fragmentary concepts
• Dominance of the majority religion
• Lack of communication
First findings
• Tendencies concerning religious diversity
in kindergartens
• Tendencies concerning the conversation
of children about religious diversity
Topics raised by children of the majority
group about their own religion
Catholic kindergarten:
• Church
• Celebrations
Islamic kindergarten:
• Qu`ran
• Mosque
• Washing before prayer
• Moral commitment
• Celebrations
• Own religious
denomination
How children of the non majority group
discuss their own religion
Catholic kindergarten
• no discussion of their religious denomination
or any religious celebration
Islamic kindergarten
• mentioning not being a Muslim
How children in the Catholic kindergarten
discuss religious diversity
Non majority relgion:
• do not mention their absence
Majority religion:
• notice the absence of some peers
• do not have any explanation for this.
How children in the Islamic kindergarten
discuss religious diversity
Non majority religion:
• mention that they do not take part in Religious
Education, because they are not Muslims
Majority religion:
• questions about religious denominations,
religious habits, celebrations
• notice absence of some children in Religious
Education and have explanations for this
How children of the non majority religion behave
concerning religious diversity
• Participation in majority religious behavior
• Differentiation of the children to the religious
behavior of the majority religion
• Alternation between participation and
differentiation
Summary of the discussion of religion and
religious diversity of the children
• Differences between the two kindergartens
• Differences between the majority and the non-majority
religion
• Children notice religious differences, sometimes they
do not have explanations.
• Differences seem to be a matter of course for the
Muslim children in the Islamic kindergarten.
• Children do not talk about religious differences in the
Catholic kindergarten.
• Children of the non majority group do not talk about
their religion.
A few implications because of the empirical
findings
• Kindergartens have to find structures that do
not discriminate against the non majority
religion
• Educational system
• Support for the kindergarten teachers
• Development of the kindergartens
• Support communication in the kindergartens
• Support from a not involved person
For further questions or remarks:
[email protected]
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RELIGIOUS DIVERSITY IN KINDERGARTENS IN VIENNA Helena Stockinger, 17.11.2014