In recent years, there is a growing interest for attending to children’s voice in environmental research. The theoretical developments in knowledge about children view them as social agents who can make sense of their own experiences in relation to the environment surrounded them. In this report, we add reflections from an ongoing project “voices of the future” which aims to reimagine future of treescapes in the UK. Using examples from two primary schools in the northwest of England, we discuss children’s knowledge about trees and how children talk about their lived experiences with trees. Centring on our field work experiences, we discuss how children skilfully communicate distinctive meanings of trees using distinctive modes of communication. We look at how children make sense of the world around them, stressing on developing multiple and relational ways of attending to children’s knowledge about trees and their experiences of natural environment in educational settings.

Author Biography

Samyia Ambreen

Samyia Ambreen is a Research Associate in Education and Social Sciences Research Institute (ESRI) at Manchester Metropolitan University. Her research interests include understanding children’s interactions through a participatory research design, with a focus on ethnicity and cultural diversity. She is also interested in hope, children’s spiritualty, and care towards environment.

Khawla Badwan

Khawla Badwan is Reader in TESOL and applied linguistics at Manchester Metropolitan University. Her interdisciplinary work brings together expertise in intercultural communication, literacy debates, language education, language and climate change education, language and social justice, language and identity, and sociolinguistics of globalisation. Her most recent school-based research projects include the ‘Voices of the Future’ project funded by the Natural Environment Research Council and the ‘Children’s Sociolinguistics’ project funded by Manchester Metropolitan University.

Kate Pahl

Kate Pahl is Professor of Arts and Literacy at Manchester Metropolitan University. Her work is concerned with literacy and language practices in communities. She is the author, with Jennifer Rowsell, of Living Literacies (MIT Press 2020). She is currently the Principal Investigator of ‘Voices of the Future’, a three year project funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), exploring the relationship between children and young people and Treescapes.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.