ERIC Number: ED178173
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Relation of Children's Sex-Typed Behavior to Classroom, and Activity Structure.
Carpenter, C. Jan
The effects of preschool children's activity participation on a broad range of social and task-oriented behaviors was investigated. Effects of high versus low structure activities within classrooms and effects of high versus low overall structure between classrooms were examined. A measure of the amount of teacher feedback to individuals was used as an index of the degree of structure for each activity. Classrooms were rated as high or low overall structure based on the amounts of teacher-led and directed activities they incorporated. Eighty-three children, aged 2 1/2 to 5 years, in five preschool classrooms were observed during daily free choice of activity periods. Results showed that within classrooms, boys participated more in low structure activities and girls participated more in high structure activities. Findings also suggested that children in low structure classrooms were spending more time in self-organized play. The rate of compliance to teacher's directions was higher in high structure activities and high structure classrooms had more compliance than low structure classrooms. Low structure classrooms had more novel behavior than high structure classrooms and within low structure classrooms, more novel behavior occurred in low structure activities. Within classes, boys showed more self-initiated activity changes than girls. The self-initiated activity changes occurred more in low structure classrooms than in high structure classrooms. These findings were interpreted as supporting the idea that sex-typed behaviors are learned through participation in activities differing in structure. (JMB)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Child Health and Human Development (NIH), Bethesda, MD.
Authoring Institution: Kansas Univ., Lawrence.
Identifiers: Activity Structure
Note: For related document, see ED 170 052; Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (San Francisco, CA, March 15-18, 1979)