Children’s Communities of Mixed-Ages

Research output: Contribution to Book/ReportChapterpeer-review


This chapter considers the origins of mixed-age grouping, its theoretical underpinning and worldwide examples today. It examines the role of mixed-age interactions in families and neighbourhood communities and considers mixed-age grouping as developmentally appropriate practice with young children. The chapter explores the practical implications of establishing mixed-age communities of learners. It concludes with the idea that although mixed-age groups for young children are much debated, they are common in early years settings around the world. They are typically adopted for two reasons: either out of demographic and economic necessity or as a result of pedagogical choice based on the belief that mixed-age groups are superior to same-age ones in supporting, for example, children's social development and their sense of community within the earliest years of their lives. Intentional pedagogy refers to intentional learning on behalf of the children and intentional teaching from the practitioners: the many decisions made as children work towards challenging but achievable goals in the learning process.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationYoung Children and Their Communities
Subtitle of host publicationUnderstanding Collective Social Responsibility
EditorsGillian Sykes, Eleonora Teszenyi
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781315151342
ISBN (Print)9781138558526, 9781138558502
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jun 2018


  • Children's communities
  • Communities
  • Children
  • Mixed-age groups


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