A child’s-eye view of social difference

Children are increasingly the focus of Government policy, and improvement of outcomes for children in disadvantaged areas is a priority. However, little is known about how children see and experience poverty, wealth, and ‘social difference’ in their everyday lives. This report explores their own views, using their terms. A participatory approach was used, which enabled the children to lead the research focus. The report compares the similarities and differences between the findings from the two groups. The study was conducted with 42 children aged between 8 and 13. Of these, 19 were from a disadvantaged housing estate and 23 attended a fee-paying independent school. The children participated in a series of workshops and helped to choose the research methods, which included role play, photography, mapping and ‘draw and write’ techniques. The report will be of interest to researchers and policymakers in the fields of education and child poverty.