Listening: Trying to Understand the Adolescent

By Gabriel Julien.

Published by The International Journal of Literacies

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This action research was conducted over a three-year period with twelve boys, age 12 – 17, who live at Mission, a drop-in centre, in Port of Spain, the capital of Trinidad and Tobago. The research was based on a case study in which unstructured interviews and participant observation were used to collect data. Field work was carried out twice a week at different days and hours. Data revealed that listening is absolutely necessary in trying to understand the goals and the aspirations of these adolescents. Although it is not easy it is suggested that professionals and citizens would do well to listen and understand the lives of children in order to bring about change.

Keywords: Listening, Understanding, Empathasing, Adolescents, Children, Perspectives

The International Journal of Literacies, Volume 19, Issue 3, pp.79-88. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 356.228KB).

Dr. Gabriel Julien

Retired Principal, Ministry of Education, Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago

Gabriel Julien Ph.D., was an educator in a secondary school, for some ten years. He served as vice principal and principal in a secondary school for a number of years. He has done extensive action research among street children in Trinidad and certain parts of Latin America. As part of his research, Dr. Julien spent significant time listening to children and trying to decode their voices as accurately as possible. Today, he continues to work among street children in his own country. Dr. Julien was a part-time lecturer at the Arthur Loc Jack School of Graduate Business and also at the School of Continuing Studies, University of the West Indies. He is an external evaluator with the Accreditation Council of Trinidad and Tobago.