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Out-of-School, at Home

Home Hangouts

While young people’s access to personal space continues to be mediated by a variety of economic, social, and cultural factors, young people in the West spend an increasing amount of the after-school hours in personal or private spaces. Teens’ bedrooms, in particular, have become important sites for leisure and learning where individualized and networked media use is increasingly commonplace.

The authors in this section explore the organization, technologies, and relationships that affect young people’s out-of school time at home. In “What (and Where) Is the ‘Learning’ When We Talk About Learning in the Home?,” Julian Sefton-Green offers insights into how at-home learning is constructed differently for different families and considers the significant role “talk” plays in defining learning as separate from other nonschool activity. In the second essay in this section, “Global Childhoods, Asian Lifeworlds: After-School Time in Hong Kong,” Nicola Yelland, Sandy Muspratt, and Caja Gilbert explore home spaces through a cultural lens, asking questions about eastern and western perceptions of home learning.

Two final pieces focus specifically on the experiences of young women. Kortney Sherbine offers a conceptual essay, “Becoming-Belieber: Girls’ Passionate Encounters with Bieber Culture,” and photographer Rania Matar offers a photo essay drawn from her collection “A Girl and Her Room.” Taken together, these two pieces offer a historical nod and contemporary update to landmark out-of-school research on girls’ “bedroom culture” (McRobbie & Garber, 1976).