October 29, 2015
Robert H. Lee Alumni Centre, 6163 University Blvd., Vancouver

Korczak Relief


Janusz Korczak and the Importance of Listening to Children’s Voices in Education: Theory, Research, and Practical Strategies

Lecture Abstract: Throughout the literature it is increasingly recognized that a child’s and adolescent’s functioning in school is inextricably linked with his or her sense of belonging and connection to the school environment and his or her relationships with peers and teachers within it. Thus, it is necessary to obtain the perspectives of children and youth regarding their school experiences and for them to be included in decisions that affect their lives in schools in explicit and authentic ways. This presentation will focus on the aspects of Janusz Korczak’s work that can inform both present and future efforts to bring children’s voices into schools. Included in this discussion will be some of the recent scientific findings which indicate that including students’ voices not only leads to higher academic achievement, but also supports the development of their empathy, compassion, and well-being. The session will also include a panel of young children who will be asked to provide their own experiences on why this is important and give their advice to educators and others on how to include children’s voices into the fabric of schooling.

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Kimberly A. Schonert-Reichl, Professor in the Human Development, Learning, and Culture program at UBC and the Interim Director of the Human Early Learning Partnership in the School of Population and Public Health in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia.

Panel: A panel of children.

Moderator: Maria LeRose, Program Director for the Dalai Lama Center for Peace and Education

Registration:  For more information and to register, please visit jklectures.educ.ubc.ca.  This event is free of charge.



This Centennial Session lecture is the second of six in the “How to Love a Child”, the Janusz Korczak Lecture Series which is devoted to key issues crucial to the well-being and rights of children and young people today.  The goal of the lecture series is to foster conversations among academics, professionals and child advocates from diverse fields concerned with the welfare of the child.

All lectures are free of charge and will be held at the Robert H. Lee Alumni Centre, 6163 University Blvd.  Registration is required.

  • Tuesday, September 29, 2015, 7:00pm
    Keeping our Promise to Children: the Relevance of Korczak’s Legacy for Children Today
    Keynote Speaker: Mr. Irwin Elman, Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth of Ontario, President, Canadian Council of Child and Youth Advocates
  • Thursday, October 29, 2015, 7:00pm
    Janusz Korczak and the Importance of Listening to Children’s Voices in Education: Theory, Research, and Practical Strategies
    Keynote Speaker: Dr. Kimberly Schonert-Reichl, Professor, Faculty of Education, University of British Columbia
  • Wednesday, November 25, 2015, 7:00pm
    The Evolution, Current Status and Future of the “Best Interests of the Child” Principle in the Protection of Children’s Rights
    Keynote Speaker: Ann Cools, Senator for Toronto Centre-York
  • Thursday, January 21, 2016, 7:00pm
    The Human Rights of Aboriginal Children
    Keynote Speakers: Dr. Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond , BC Representative for Children and Youth, and Dr. Michael DeGagné, President and Vice-Chancellor of Nipissing University
  • Thursday, February 18, 2016, 7:00pm
    Janusz Korczak’s Enduring Legacy: Social Paediatrics in Canada and Vancouver
    Keynote Speakers: Dr. Gilles Julien, Social paediatrician, president and founder of the Fondation du Dr Julien, Mrs. Hélène Sioui Trudel, Mediator, Health and Law Alliance, and Dr. Christine Loock, Children’s and Women’s Health Centre of British Columbia and Social Paediatrics RICHER Program leader
  • Wednesday, April 6, 2016, 7:00pm
    Summary Lecture
    Keynote Speaker: Dr. James Anglin, Professor, School of Child and Youth Care, University of Victoria



Janusz Korczak (1879 – 1942) was born in Poland and was one of the world’s first child rights advocates; he must also be considered one of the greatest.  His influence on our contemporary thinking and discourse about childhood and childcare places him in the ranks of such luminaries as Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Heinrich Pestalozzi and Maria Montessori and his impact on international child rights policies, laws and practices is unparalleled.

In addition, he was a brilliant doctor and superb writer of books for adults and young people, who during his life and since has inspired millions in his native country, across Europe and around the world.