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Updating the content of home economics modules in terms of sustainability

Irena Logar (2017) Updating the content of home economics modules in terms of sustainability. MSc thesis.

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    Home Economics is an obligatory subject in the fifth and sixth grades in nine-grade Slovenian elementary schools. Its objectives and contents are targeted at educational work that stimulates students to form positive viewpoints, knowledge and behaviour towards sustainable society development. The goal of the master’s thesis is to research curricula of the obligatory subject Home Economics and the elective subject Modern Food Preparation with regard to aims and contents that deal with sustainable development. The research included students’ theoretical knowledge of sustainable development and determine the transfer of gained knowledge to various life situations to which they are exposed. For the needs of the research, descriptive and causal non-experimental methods of empirical pedagogical research was used. The research included 120 students from the fifth and sixth grades, and students who attended the elective subject Modern Food Preparation. The data of sustainable contents that is included in the discussed curricula was obtained with the analysis of the curricula; students’ knowledge, viewpoints and behaviour were determined with a purposely designed questionnaire that was filled in by the students. Based on the survey of the curricula and the analysis of the empirical research, a proposition for upgrading the existing curricula shall be formed, as far as the content as well as the method and didactic purpose are concerned. This can significantly contribute to systematic education of children and adolescents for sustainable development. The results of the research show that the topics dealing with sustainable development are not or are not well represented in the curricula. That is why we have drafted new, up-to-date concepts that would be included in the curricula and catalogues of knowledge. We also propose the incorporation of the principle of sustainability into the fundamental principles that we take into account in implementing the general objectives of the curriculum for Home Economics. The students showed the most knowledge in the answers to the questions that are included in the curricula and discussed in the lessons about recycling, waste separation, reuse of waste, handling dangerous waste, energy saving. The largest lack of knowledge was found in new terms that are not included in the curriculum, such as fast fashion, invisible water, quality certificates, and so on. We were also interested in the pupils' opinion on the frequency of using knowledge that they acquire in Home Economics and then use in everyday life. The results show that there were no statistically significant differences between the opinions of the surveyed pupils in the fifth grades and the pupils in higher grades on the use of acquired knowledge in Home Economics and the elective subject. Statistically significant differences were revealed only in the different opinions of pupils in the 5th grade and other pupils regarding the avoidance of packaged foods and the refusal of plastic bags when shopping. All surveyed students believe that the most useful and often transferable knowledge in everyday life is cooking; the least-used knowledge gained in Home Economics processing and design of old clothes into interesting clothing. The content of sustainable development should be included in the curricula and catalogues of knowledge that should guide the teacher in planning, directing and implementing educational work, since only in this way we will be able to achieve changes in thinking and functioning of the society towards sustainable development and ultimately achieve goals that are included in The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

    Item Type: Thesis (MSc thesis)
    Keywords: home economics teaching, home economics literacy, sustainable consumption, development of practical skills, environmental education, sustainable development, sustainable competences
    Number of Pages: 78
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    izr. prof. dr. Verena KochMentor
    doc. dr. Francka Lovšin KozinaComentor
    Link to COBISS: http://www.cobiss.si/scripts/cobiss?command=search&base=50126&select=(ID=11736393)
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 4757
    Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2017 08:16
    Last Modified: 27 Sep 2017 08:16
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/4757

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