Practicing Death Education in Elementary Schools. Reflecting on the Implementation of a Unit Plan in a Year 3 Classroom


As empirical research in the field of death education is still rather limited, this paper aims to explore some of the complexities of implementing a unit plan on loss and grief in a Year 3 classroom in Cyprus. This research is based on an Action Research study that includes the design, implementation and evaluation of a unit plan which serves death education’s objectives and goals. In particular, the research and pedagogical intervention uses children’s literature to introduce death issues to young children. The findings highlight some pedagogical, curricular, and social challenges of integrating the concepts of loss and grief in the elementary school curriculum. They also contribute to a better understanding of the broader value of formulating a pedagogy of loss and grief that provides opportunities for young children to study the meaning of grief and the practices that support those who grieve. The paper concludes by discussing the pedagogical and research implications for death education in elementary schools.




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