Sagoo, Gopinder Kaur (2009)
M.Res. thesis, University of Birmingham.
This qualitative case study considers the formation of a vision for learning by members of a Sikh education trust called GNNET, established in the Midlands, UK, in 2001. Four participant interviews are analysed to build a picture of the meanings, values and life experiences which underpin their endeavours to articulate an ethos. These bring together a range of understandings, personal stances and communicative repertoires, generating common themes as well as highlighting distinct approaches and orientations. Sikh identity pertains to a shared religion, ethnicity and culture, originating five centuries ago in the Punjab region of northern India. This tends to be researched as a subject of study rather than a basis for exploring approaches to learning itself. Associated with the Punjabi words sikhna (‘to learn’) and sikhya (‘learning’), the tradition is rich in educational concepts, arising from its sacred text and resulting discourses and practices passed down through oral tradition. GNNET seeks to identify, apply and share these concepts, emphasising that education should help one to develop spiritually as well as prepare one for work and life in society. Thus, this study also hopes to prompt further research contributing Sikh perspectives to the field of children’s ‘spiritual, moral, social and cultural development’.
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