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Governance and Voluntariness for Children in Swedish Leisure-Time Centres: Leisure-Time Teachers Interpreting Their Tasks and Everyday Practice

Maria Hjalmarsson



The aim of this article is to explore and discuss the tension between certain aspects of governance and voluntariness for children in the context of Swedish leisure-time centres meant for younger school children. The data consists of interviews with leisure-time teachers in five settings. The results show that there appears to be a paradox in that not offering children organized activities may be interpreted as childminding while at the same time the leisure-time teachers emphasize the importance of letting the children choose which activities they wish to be involved in. This may be a question of how the leisure-time teachers interpret and understand the concept of leisure and its consequences in everyday practice. In absence of a task to evaluate the learning outcomes of the children, the leisure-time teachers need to find other ways to describe and show the high quality of the activities offered. Working with carrying out quality reports may be such a means.

Keywords: Leisure-time centre, leisure-time teacher, quality, children, voluntariness, governance, teacher professionalism


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