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Fathers and male guardians are important stakeholders in children’s education: do Lego building and scratch-like programming activities hold a key to involving them more?

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Abstract

Previous research indicates positive influences on engagement, expectation and outcomes of learning when fathers and male guardians support and work with their children. In primary school settings, fathers and male guardians are less frequently seen to be involved in educational, school-based discussions and activities. The research reported in this paper indicates how a contemporary project is positively supporting father and male guardian involvement with their children, using technologies (Lego Technics Mindstorms and Scratch-like programming) as an important medium, where building and programming enable shared and collaborative learning. The findings highlight important ways in which this project is enabling this shared activity learning, through intergenerational learning practices. Clear implications for wider national and international development are raised. Recommendations are offered.