Talking Circles

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Cartmel, Jennifer
Casley, Marilyn
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Susanne Garvis & Donna Pendergast

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2014
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Abstract

Through the process of talking to one another, children become creators of their own future as they collaborate and build relationships. The Talking Circles are designed to encourage children to ask questions about their lives and how they can make a difference for themselves, each other and their community. This process helps to build the resilience and leadership skills of children. These qualities are important to help children consider day-to-day challenges and further contribute to their sense of wellbeing. Children today experience many issues that can be interpreted in different ways. If we view children as strong, capable individuals who co-construct their own experience, we as children's services educators, in conjunction with parents, are providing children with the skills to deal with the current nature of society. This chapter explores a concept called Talking Circles, which can be used to build relationships with other children and adults, and help children understand their everyday experiences. The chapter begins by describing the structure and process of the Talking Circles. Second, it describes the importance of the Talking Circles to the wellbeing of children. Finally, it outlines the range of strategies that can be used within the Talking Circles to foster and support children's abilities to engage in conversations with other children and adults. These strategies form the basis of the Talking Circles and, when used on a regular basis in school classrooms and child-care settings, have a profound influence on children's wellbeing.

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Health and wellbeing in childhood

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Social Work not elsewhere classified

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