Spiritual Meditations

Being in the Early Years
Living reference work entry
Part of the Springer International Handbooks of Education book series (SIHE)


Western education systems typically place significance on the development of the whole child; however, the spiritual domain of development is often neglected due to the belief that religion and spirituality are synonymous notions. The purpose of this chapter is to explore the varying understandings and ideas of spirituality in an attempt to illustrate its significance and possibilities within the early years. This piece does not attempt to isolate a single definition of spirituality but rather recognizes spirituality as a way of being and focuses on meditating ideas of what spirituality can be in various contexts of the early years. Through the exploration of current literature and application of relevant narratives, this piece emphasizes the avoidance of spirituality within educational settings and the common characteristics or foundations of spirituality. Finally, the chapter will offer practice implications that can support educators in welcoming spirituality into the classroom environment.


Spirituality Early years Spiritual development Whole child Pedagogy 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.York UniversityTorontoCanada
  2. 2.The University of Guelph-HumberTorontoCanada
  3. 3.Ryerson UniversityTorontoCanada

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