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FREQUENCY OF PARALLEL, ASSOCIATIVE, AND COOPERATIVE PLAY IN BRITISH CHILDREN OF DIFFERENT SOCIOECONOMIC STATUS

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Abstract:

This pilot study tested for socioeconomic status (SES) differences in the frequency of social play in British children. Participants were 40 children, 3–5 years old, selected in equal numbers from two nurseries, one in a high and the other in a low SES borough of East England. Ten episodes of play from each nursery were observed, transcribed, and coded into Parten's (1932) play categories (parallel, associative, and co-operative play) obtaining a total of 282 instances of social play. The child's frequencies of the three types of social play were used as the dependent variables in a SES × Gender multivariate analysis of variance. There was only one significant result, the main effect of SES for associative play, indicating that this type of play is twice as frequent in low as in high SES children. Findings indicate that there are no SES or gender differences in the overall frequency of social play, but children of low SES have a significantly stronger propensity toward associative play.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2006.34.5.587

Publication date: January 1, 2006

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