Tensions of Difference in Integrating Refugee Children in Norwegian ECEC Centers
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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OriginalversjonKimathi, E. (2023). Tensions of Difference in Integrating Refugee Children in Norwegian ECEC Centers. Nordisk Barnehageforskning, 20 (4), 43-62. https://doi.org/10.23865/nbf.v20.409
This article explores the tensions that arise in the integration process of refugee children in Norwegian ECEC centres. For many refugee children, ECEC centres form the first public institution where they learn about the norms and values outside of their homes. Using institutional ethnography as a method of inquiry, data was gathered using semi-structured interviews with ECEC professionals, focusing on how they interact with refugee children and how they do everyday integration work. The article adopts the concept of the "civilizing process" by Norbert Elias as the overarching analytical concept. The findings reveal that integration of refugee children involves tensions in negotiating language, civilising children into Norwegian ideals of childhood, and civilising parents into the Norwegian cultural ideal of parenting.