Integrating Community-Based Values with a Rights-Integrative Approach to Early Learning Through Early Childhood Curricula

  • Rachel CaplanEmail author
  • Aurelia Di Santo
  • Colleen Loomis
Living reference work entry
Part of the Springer International Handbooks of Education book series (SIHE)


This chapter presents an application of the conceptual model of social justice that integrates community-based values with Di Santo and Kenneally’s (Child Educ 90(6):395–406, 2014) “rights-integrative approach to early learning” (Caplan et al., J Child Stud 41:38–46, 2016). The conceptual model emerged from an analysis of the British Columbia Early Learning Framework (Government of British Columbia, British Columbia early learning framework. Ministry of Health and Ministry of Children and Family Development, Victoria, 2008). The aim of this chapter is to discuss how the learning framework exemplifies the integration of children’s rights with community-based values. Examples of how professionals working in early learning settings may integrate conceptualizations of children’s rights of a “community of children” in addition to more conventional conceptualizations of child rights as individuals are provided.


Children’s rights Community-based values Early childhood education Rights-integrative approach Community of children 


  1. Akkari, A., Loomis, C., & Bauer, S. (2011). From accommodating to using diversity by teachers in Switzerland. Journal of Multiculturalism in Education, 7, 1–11.Google Scholar
  2. Albee, G. W. (1986). Toward a just society: Lessons from observations on the primary prevention of psychopathology. American Psychologist, 41, 891–898. Scholar
  3. Angelique, H. L. (2008). On power, psychopolitical validity, and play. Journal of Community Psychology, 36(2), 246–253.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Caplan, R., Loomis, C., & Di Santo, A. (2016). A conceptual model of children’s rights and community-based values to promote social justice through early childhood curriculum frameworks. Journal of Childhood Studies, 41, 38–46.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Di Santo, A., & Kenneally, N. (2014). A call for a shift in thinking: Viewing children as rights-holders in early childhood curriculum frameworks. Childhood Education, 90(6), 395–406.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Government of British Columbia. (2008). British Columbia early learning framework. Victoria: Ministry of Health and Ministry of Children and Family Development.Google Scholar
  7. Lansdown, G., & Wernham, M. (2012). No. 3 Understanding young people’s rights to decide: Are protection and autonomy opposing concepts? International Planned Parenthood Federation.Google Scholar
  8. Loomis, C., & Akkari, A. (2012). From the will to the field: Parent participation in early childhood education in Madagascar. Africa Development, 37, 87–99.Google Scholar
  9. McCullum, C., Peletier, D., Barr, D., Wilkins, J., & Habicht, J.-P. (2004). Mechanisms of power within a community-based food security planning process. Health Education & Behavior, 31(2), 206–222.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Nelson, G. (2010). Housing for people with serious mental illness: Approaches, evidence, and transformative change. Journal of Sociology & Social Welfare, 37, 123–146.Google Scholar
  11. Nelson, G., & Caplan, R. (2014). The prevention of child physical abuse and neglect: An update. Journal of Applied Research on Children: Informing Policy for Children at Risk, 5, Article 3.Google Scholar
  12. Nelson, G., Prilleltensky, I., & Hasford, J. (2009). Prevention and mental health promotion in the community. In D. Dozois & P. Firestone (Eds.), Abnormal psychology: Perspectives (4th ed., pp. 440–457). Scarborough: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  13. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. (2005). Convention on the Rights of the Child: General comment no. 7: Implementing child rights in early childhood. Geneva: United Nations.Google Scholar
  14. Pacini-Ketchabaw, V., & Berikoff, A. (2008). The politics of difference and diversity: From young children’s violence to creative power expressions. Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, 9, 256–264. Scholar
  15. Rappaport, J. (1987). Terms of empowerment/exemplars of prevention: Toward a theory for community psychology. American Journal of Community Psychology, 13, 121–148. Scholar
  16. Riemer, M., & Van Voorhees, C. W. (2014). Sustainability and social justice. In C. Johnson, H. Friedman, J. Diaz, B. Nastasi, & Z. Franco (Eds.), Praeger handbook of social justice and psychology (pp. 49–66). Westport: Praeger Publishers.Google Scholar
  17. Tarasuk, V. (2001). A critical examination of community-based responses to household food insecurity in Canada. Health Education & Behavior, 28(4), 487–499.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Trickett, E. J. (1996). A future for community psychology: The contexts of diversity and the diversity of contexts. American Journal of Community Psychology, 24, 209–234. Scholar
  19. UN General Assembly. (1989). Convention on the Rights of the Child, 20 November 1989, United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 1577 (p. 3). Retrieved from
  20. Zimmerman, M. A. (2000). Empowerment theory. In J. Rappaport & E. Seidman (Eds.), Handbook of community psychology (pp. 43–63). Boston: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rachel Caplan
    • 1
    Email author
  • Aurelia Di Santo
    • 2
  • Colleen Loomis
    • 3
  1. 1.Canadian Observatory on Homelessness, Faculty of EducationYork UniversityTorontoCanada
  2. 2.School of Early Childhood StudiesRyerson UniversityTorontoCanada
  3. 3.Balsillie School of International AffairsWilfrid Laurier UniversityWaterlooCanada

Personalised recommendations