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ERIC Number: EJ1152174
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1941-1243
Play in Natural Environments: A Pilot Study Quantifying the Behavior of Children on Playground Equipment
Miller, Lucy Jane; Schoen, Sarah A.; Camarata, Stephen M.; McConkey, John; Kanics, Ingrid M.; Valdez, Andrea; Hampton, Shannon
Journal of Occupational Therapy, Schools & Early Intervention, v10 n3 p213-231 2017
Playground design is critical to school-based practice, insuring access and use for all children. The play behavior of children with special needs is qualitatively and quantitatively different than their typically developing peers. However, empirical data is needed to support the therapeutic value of playground equipment used with school-aged children. Thirty-two hours of videotape was collected from 140 children who were typically developing (male = 56%) and 41 children with a variety of developmental disabilities including autism, ADHD, sensory and regulatory disorders (male = 76%), ages 3 to 15 years. Six pieces of playground equipment were analyzed using a behavioral coding system for sensory features, social interaction, self-regulation, motor skills, and play levels. Content validity of the behavioral coding scheme was obtained through a case study. Proprioception was enhanced through active use of the playground equipment. Increased verbalizations and positive affect were observed across all pieces of equipment. Symbolic play, novel use and motor planning were fostered. Regaining regulation and expressions of self-esteem were quantifiable. Correlations support relations between proprioception and social interaction; positive affect and social interaction; motor planning and self-esteem; and play levels with positive affect and social interaction. Improvements in regaining regulation, self-esteem, and postive affect were demonstrated through the case study analyses. Playground behaviors could be described using a behavioral coding scheme that includes sensory features, social interaction, self-regulation, motor skills, and play levels. This behavioral coding system validated the features of an inclusive playground and quantified the effectiveness of intervention.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Colorado (Denver)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A